Yesterday we celebrated Dominican Republic's Independence Day - el 27 de Febrero. I couldn't help but think that if this had only been the U.S. Independence Day, July 4th, I would have been enjoying many refreshments with real alcohol instead of the virgin Cranberry Mojito that wonderful Husband made me. Oh well, there's always next year.
As all good Americans when there is a warm weather holiday to celebrate, we celebrate with pasta salads, solo cups, and a grill bursting with grilled meat - meats that cluck, meats that moo, meats that are spicy or Italian... yummmm. As all good Americans, we celebrate with a BBQ.
Husband dressed Rafa in her BBQ clothes and I finally dressed myself - no small feat when you're feeling this big. Our family of three headed over at 4:00. We were first to arrive - on time - unheard of in DPT (Dominican People Time) but we knew that Rafa's bedtime at 7:00 would make us first to depart too. (Yes, readers, Husband and I are ferocious about the same bedtime. It's what has let us order pizza and watch movies on properly named "PizzaMovie Friday" and allowed us to actually like each other every other day of the week for the last 10 months of our daughter's 16 month romp here on Earth. Please stop telling me that we have to be "flexible" about our bedtime. Her bedtime is the reason we are still in love.)
As a wise man once said on a totally different topic:
"My choice is what I choose to do and if I'm causing no harm it shouldn't bother you."
Applies here too.
I like arriving early to parties. You always get the closest seat to the food and drinks table. And being 36 weeks pregnant, I don't need to make excuses about not moving from this seat, especially with men:
I say: Ugh. Ahhh. My vagina bone feels like it's going to fall out whenever I get up.
Terrified Man says: Oh. Oh gosh. Ok. No worries. I'll climb over you. Don't move.
(I don't actually pull out the vagina bone card unless it's Husband who gets more information then he probably needs about my vagina bone.)
Rafa, Home Hellion, reverts to Baby Shy Shy when we get somewhere new. So she stands by the door staring around at her new surroundings. Husband and I, never far, leave her there. She'll figure it out in her own time. Eventually she walks over to where we are - where I am - because I am seated next to the food table. She is our hungry, hungry, hippo. The apple doesn't fall far kinda thing.
Our host, dips an orange pepper into dip and offering it to Rafa asks me, "Will she eat this?" To which I respond, "She'll eat anything you give her." - which is awesome now but something I need to teach her is a No Bueno Idea when some creepy guy offers her a piece of candy, deary. She takes the pepper and first licks off the dip - I've taught her well. Then she slowly eats the pepper waiting for it taste as good as it did with the dip - her daddy has taught her well. When she's done, she' back at the table, looking at me, saying, "Mas (-more in Spanish)"
Our host then offers her a strawberry dipped in whip cream. Heavenly. The next hour or so continues like this, Rafa trying mostly everything on the table except the things I won't give her like Spicy Buffalo Chicken Dip - although Husband seems to think that she could handle Spicy Buffalo Chicken Dip. She's now totally comfortable eating in her new surroundings and I make my way to the outside terrace and sit out there with friends.
After a bit, she walks through the open sliding door towards me with Husband right behind. Immediately I look at her face and notice that around her eyes is a bit red.
Me: Is she ok.
Meeks: She's fine. Why?
Oh fathers. You just don't catch what mothers do.
I note the pepper in her hand but I also notice the piece in her mouth that she is slightly gagging on. I'm not worried about the gagging - this happens often with our hungry hippo (yes, this has happened before. Having a good eating kid is awesome but one of the downsides is that she often shoves whole pieces of things in her mouth and then realizes that she needs more than 8 teeth to help it go down). But something seemed different from the other times I've seen her gag. I've also seen this before with Jersey, our puppy mill hot mess rescue poodle with a sensitive stomach.
I reacted the way I do when Jersey tries to throw up on our new couch or area rug (although the rest of of floor is tile - he chooses the f*cking carpet - every single time!), I stuck my right hand out in front of her mouth just in time to catch her throw up chewed up pepper, saliva and gross sh*t into my hand instead of our hosts' terrace.
A one handed catch I would like to point out.
Meeks: Oh maaan.
Me: Did you give her the Spicy Buffalo Chicken Dip?
Meeks: No. (Sees me looking at him with my non-believing eyes) I swear.
Me: (Stare down. He knows this to mean move fast)
(He walks inside to find me a paper towel.)
I sit outside on the terrace having barely moved my colossal belly from the chair let alone my seated position, holding Rafa's arm with my left hand and her vomit in my right hand.
No vomit on the terrace and only a small trickle on her BBQ dress.
Personal Information Vault: I always felt a certain affinity for Jorge Posada #20 since my birthday is on the 20th. Totally arbitrary. Nonetheless... great catchers think alike.