We finally arrived at the ice rink and it looked very crowded from the parking lot. We were pleasantly surprised to find that there were actually 2 rinks and that on one of them the high school teams were playing hockey, so that's why the parking lot was so crowded. Parker was enamored with these "hockey" boys and declared he was going to be a hockey player when he got big. I finally explained to him that he would have to learn to skate first, so we pried him from the glass and got everyones skates on. I decided to forgo the skates in case some of the kids didn't like it and wanted to go back to the snack bar or watch the hockey game. This is where our night took an ugly turn. WARNING: This is the bloody party.
No sooner had everyone gotten on the ice than one of Jackson's friends fell and busted his nose and mouth. I literally turned around and he was there behind me, bleeding profusely. If you have ever had experience with a busted nose, you know that it seems like this must be the plug for the body's entire blood supply, because it will bleed for what seems like forever. It really wasn't too bad, but I know it hurt him, bless his heart. We decided to call his parents who just happened to be in Huntsville, and they came to check on him. By the time they got there he was back on the ice and had decided to continue his night with us. All the boys were so glad he stayed.
They skated their little hearts out until it was time to go. Parker now dearly loves ice skating and asked this morning if we could go back. He still insists he's going to be a hockey player when he gets big, which is fine with me because I love it too. Mia fell down a lot, but she really liked it. All the boys did great for their first time. Maybe next time I'll get out there with them.
On the way home they scared each other to death with ghost stories. They all took turns telling the same old stories that we used to tell as kids. I can remember being terrified of some of these tales as a kid, and I guess they were to because when Jeremy checked on them in the early hours of this morning they were all (yes all 4) in Jackson's bed asleep. I wish I had had the energy to find my camera and take their picture, but good grief, it was 4 a.m.! They finally got up for breakfast, then played until it was time to go home.
It's hard to believe Jackson doesn't want me to plan him an elaborate "themed" birthday party anymore, but he really just wanted to have his close friends over to spend time together. It's even harder to believe that he will be 9 years old on Monday. He is a lot like me in his personality and mannerisms, which is a bit frightening, but I hope he gets over the bad ones and learns to embrace the good ones! It was a great weekend with all his friends. I hope he looks back on these times with his friends and remembers them fondly. I know in my own experience that most "good" friends are indeed fair weather friends, but Jackson has picked some good ones, and I hope they remain close as they get older.
Jeremy & Parker
The whole gang
Parker contemplating his hockey career
Mia working hard on pancakes for the boys' breakfast
Jackson and friends