Sunday, November 11, 2012

Yordan Turns Two

My little host-brother Yordan had his big day on October 8th (yes, I know I'm a little slow on the updates), and so we staged a birthday bash in his honor. The birthday celebration plan started small, but soon ballooned out of control (read this post again, and you might catch the pun there). Here's a rough timeline of how the bash took shape:

2 weeks Out: 
Dina can be found fretting about how they are going to afford a cake, pinata, and food for Yordi's party.

1-2 Weeks Out:
Dina listens to a little birdie's idea that since Yordi is only 2 years old, he's not going to remember much about his big day, so we should just do a simple family get together in the house.

1 Week Out:
Dina delegates Cate, Yeferson, and I to make homemade, hand drawn invites for the party's guests. Dina, Roger, Yeferson, Yordan, Cate, and I make the cut for the original guest list.

6 days, 23 hours, and 50 minutes Out:
Dina adds the two neighbor girls, Keren and Yeni, to the list.

6 days, 23 hours, 49 minutes, and 59 seconds Out:
It starts to become obvious that Yeferson is the more excited about the party than anyone in the founding committee, including the birthday boy himself.

5 Days Out:
The financiers of the party hold a diner-based planning meeting. It's agreed that Roger is in charge of buying the cake, Dina will cook some popcorn and make some jello, and Brice will buy the materials to make a pinata with Yeferson.

Yeferson almost shoots through the roof with excitement.

3 Days Out:
The guest list increases as Dina lets the word slip about the fiesta to her cousins down the road.

Brice wonders around the market in Caraz, with the general idea the he's going to make a "Pig Pinata". After about an hour of aimlessly meandering, he leave 40 soles lighter, with copious amounts of pink art supplies, 3 bags of candy, and 2 cardboard boxes.

2 Days Out: 
Cate arrives from Lima that morning.

45 minutes after her arrival, Cate referees a breakfast argument between Yeferson and Brice over what shape the pinata will take. Transcripts from the debate are as follows:

Brice: "How about we make a pig! (chancho)" (said in an overly excited, 7 year old appropriate voice)
Yeferson:  "How about Barney!!!" (said in a even more enthusiastic voice)... referring to the damn purple dinosaur.
B: Chancho
Y: Barney
B: Chancho
Y: Barney
B: Chancho!
Y: Barney!
B: Chancho!!!
Y: Barney!!!
(repeat 6+ times)

Cate: (aside)  "Brice, why don't we just make Barney?"
Brice: "No Cate, I already bought the materials for a pig."
Cate: "OK. Yeferson, this time we're going to chancho, but next time, we'll make Barney"

1 hour after Cate's arrival:
Yeferson concedes artistic control of the pinata.

1 Day Out:
Cate and Brice spend the night planning the fiesta. Major points of concern being how to build a pig pinata, and what to use to hold the candy. With the help of "Mr. Google" we copy an young girl's hello-kitty design (obviously making it a pig instead of a cat) and begin thinking about the candy solution.

Google Results: Como Hacer Una Pinata

18 Hours Out:
Best candy solution determined: A giant balloon that could also act as the pig's stomach.  We begin filling a giant balloon with candy using a "stuff and blow" technique only seen in ancient Mayan drawings (Cate stuffs candy down the neck of balloon, and then I inflate it until candy falls to the bottom... keep in mind that we have 3 bags of candy).

14 Hours Out:
All the candy is squished into the balloon.

8 Hours Out:
Disaster strikes as we discover the balloon became punctured overnight. Brice's attempt to patch the hole using a bike patch and rubber cement ends with a melted ball of candy due to a strange chemical reaction.

7 Hours Out: 
With some candy salvaged, Cate and Brice agree to use a cardboard box as the stomach, and augment the candy with schwag sent to me from the states from friends and family (pencils, pens, band-aids, chapstick, jump rope, shoe laces, etc.) BIG SHOUT OUT TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY.

6 Hours Out:
Yeferson and Yordan spend the day in my room making the pinata and blowing-up balloons.

5 Hours Out:
Cate is spent, and takes a nap in the balloons.

3 Hours Out:
Dina guesses the guest list to be between 8 and 12 and begins cooking while Cate and I decorate my patio.

Yeferson comes to show off his new suit.

 Yordan show that he also has a lesser seen 'birthday suit'

During the Bash:
More than 20 kids arrive.

Roger insists on using his DVD player and Boombox/light display box in the rain to play music, instead of my "tiny computer with small speakers"... party begins to take a dive as the music isn't very kid friendly.

Cate keeps the party alive by hosting party games such as mummy races using two rolls of toilet paper (meanwhile, Dina gets mad at me for using my toilet paper for the mummy races, and collects the paper in a bag).

Dina is very content that people are eating the food, and specifically asks me to take their pictures

The boys dance and play together

Dina and Roger insist on a family picture with Cate (but not me).

I insist on my taking my own family pictures, some of which included me

End of the Party:
Cate had to catch a night bus home that night, so we let the kids break the pinata, and then everyone went home before the rain came (ending the party at about 7:30ish). It was a big success, especially the pinata.

To end it, I'll always remember the mob of kids reaching for candy after the pinata burst, and seeing Roger happily walk away holding two pencils and... a jump rope (he's the one dressed in the white shirt).