What I learned this week…”Slumber” Party is a Misnomer.

by Janelle Hanchett


  1. On Friday, Ava had her 10th birthday party.  It was a slumber party. There were SEVEN 4th and 5th grade girls in my house, at once. Did you catch that? SEVEN. SEVEN 10 and 11 year old girls.
  2. There was a lot of squealing.
  3. There was not much slumbering.
  4. Setting aside one moment of self-doubt when I thought I may need to call a few of the mothers as back-up, or, perhaps, to pick up their psychotic screaming child, it all went well. In fact, I decided that I kinda dig that age.
  5. They’re just so weird. I love it. One moment they are playing “babies,” (literally, playing house with baby dolls), the next second they’re talking about “dating,” which of course they have no understanding of whatsoever. (Evidently, in 4th grade, dating means “holding hands at lunch.” I asked.)
  6. The truth is I loved being around them and I was rather fascinated by the precious, precarious spot they all inhabit – teetering on the cusp of pre-teen years…holding on to the last moments of girlhood – but so consumed with each one. When they’re little kids, they’re TOTALLY LITTLE KIDS. When they’re pre-teens, they are totally pre-teen. They are walking contradictions – walking conflicts. Like all of us, I guess. Only they haven’t yet learned to hide it. They’re just so real.
  7. Tomorrow my first child turns 10. Double digits, people. Somehow I am kind of okay with this, but I think that’s solely because I don’t have time to be upset. I’m too deep in chaos and survival mode to feel anything right now. Maybe that’s a defense mechanism. Maybe that’s denial. Maybe this one just isn’t hurting that bad.
  8. Of course, there’s always tomorrow.
  9. I believe the highlight of the evening was when one girl said, in the heat of an animated discussion on the horrors of healthy cafeteria food, “They serve these weird orange mushy things!!” And another girl looked over, rolled her eyes, and said “Um, they’re called sweet potatoes.” I don’t know why I loved that so much. It was just adorable.
  10. Either that or it was the moment one girl said to Ava “Your mom is COOL” and Ava said “Oh no, she isn’t. She thinks it’s funny to tell people she studied music and dance at Julliard while she twirls around singing 80s songs.”
  11. Okay, but that is damn funny. Don’t you think?

Speaking of the 80s, check out this picture of Ava opening her presents, complete with blue eye shadow, which they put on themselves, pretending they were going “clubbing.” Ha.Ha.Ha. Clubbing.

She was so happy. It was awesome.

6 Comments | Posted in weeks of mayhem | November 20, 2011
  • Annie

    My sister is at this age, and I know exactly what you mean. She and her friends will tug around baby dolls and then want me to help them apply my make-up. I don’t remember being like this, but I guess we all went through it!
    And yes, that Julliard joke is damn funny.

  • Ross

    Wait you didn’t go to Julliard…? You have some crazy talent!

  • Kateri Von Steal

    Very Cute.


    She looks very happy!

  • Nj housewife

    I look forward to that age. My boys are 3 & 5 and putting me through the ringer right now (we’ve had a bad tantrum day today). I’m focusing on the teenage years to come (even though I’ve heard those are pretty damn tough). Thanks for giving me a quality blog read for the night 🙂

  • Cheney

    I am afraid of that age. I have a sister that is 12 years younger than me, and I remember her age ten very well, and it was a rough one, that particular tween year.

    Wait. I probably shouldn’t have said that to you?

    Anyway. Ha! Clubbing. Good thing she doesn’t know what MY idea of clubbing is..

  • Leah

    Ha! How funny! I have a 6 yr old daugher and 3 yr old twin daughters too! Yes, I said twins! What am I going to do when they get big?? And I think its hard now… dun dun dun…