The Sleep Over Cure

08klass-blog480-300x227Terri Cettina wrote a sleepover article in Parenting called The Sleepover Survival Guide,  in it she has some really practical tips and thoughts.

And while I read it I thought, OKAY I hear you, Terri, but I won’t NEED a survival guide, because first I’m a WAY COOL mom, and I’ve got this one down COLD!  I listened to other mothers’ horror stories, I took my notes, AND I’ve followed all the rules written on every SLUMBER Party article out there.

I had a theme, I had an invite list narrowed to only the girls that got along (mothers too – check one for me…I’m double covered!), and most importantly I discussed expectations ahead of time with my daughter.  It was her FIRST birthday SLUMBER party a rite of passage for any 8 year old.  I had everything on a list and timed.  I overpaid for someone to wash, style and sparkle hair, for another to buff and polish fingers and toes, I had a movie picked out with family members dropping by in costume- all in theme.  I set bedtime to 10pm.

The only thing I didn’t count on was the girls going ROUGE!  OFF SCHEDULE…doing their own thing in their own time.  AND I didn’t count on them NOT falling asleep eventually….

It was around one in the morning when I REMEMBERED something I forgot.   How my mother handled my first-rite-of-passage-PAJAMA-party.  The Sugar Plum Tree!

A 19th century poem recited to us to help us fall asleep and dream of a sweet wonderful adventure.  The twist for us was when we woke up there would be a little candy under our bed…sort of proof the tree was real.   It worked for me, and for my friends, we were so eager to get to sleep we were tripping over each other to get to our sleeping bags.

So….I thought…let’s try it! I explained to my little charges that I was telling them a magical poem, and I apologized because I meant to do it sooner because the Garden of Shut Eye Town where the tree grows closes at 2am.  So they would have to listen closely and fall right to sleep for the magic to work.

Within 20 minutes they were all wiggling in their bags – trying hard to fall asleep.  By 3am I could have run the vacuum in their room and I doubt if anyone would have budged.  Unfortunately for me, because I didn’t plan it well, I had to run out to buy the candy, and fill 8 little bags before they really woke up.

Was it worth it?  Me not sleeping and needed a pot of coffee to stay awake?  And running out of the house to find candy at ungodly hour?  YES!  To see them all wake up SCREAMING that it was real!  Well, that was better than cool!  And my daughter now had the BEST birthday SLEEPOVER EVER!!  At least that’s what the party of 8 said.

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    Start your family tradition TODAY with this SPECIAL OCCASION bedtime picture book!
    Take a journey across THE LOLLIPOP SEA to the GARDEN OF SHUT EYE TOWN, where the SUGAR PLUM TREE grows and whisper a word in the GINGER DOG'S ear. The CHOCOLATE CAT will appear the next morning, leaving PROOF under the bed that sweet dreams come TRUE!
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