FIFA World Cup, Watertown. Minnesota. June 27, 2010
I have long been known for two things by my nieces and nephews (aside from the obvious abject sarcasm): fancy birthday cakes and themed birthday parties for Charlie in June. Given that they are mostly all grown up now, I assumed — wrongly — that they would meet my new passivity with joy. No more feigned excitement over winning a squirt gun for hula-hooping the longest. No more wading through a glossy coating of spit-strewn fondant to reach the cake.
Win, win. Right?
Wrong, as usual.
My niece Megan called me the day before Charlie’s birthday to ask me what ‘the Theme’ for the party was. “Really,” I asked? “Cuz if you don’t have one, I do,” she said.
WORLD CUP. You know, since just about all of the kids play soccer.
It was a great idea, I admitted. If only a little freakish because The Pioneer Woman, who I both adore and despise, because she seems a lot like me — only about ten times nicer and more sincere — recently posted something about her family playing backyard soccer something akin to the World Cup.
Whatever. I can’t let the blog-o-sphere dictate my life, can I? World Cup it was.
2 v 2. Five minute games. No prisoners.
As the hostesses, Morgan and I agreed to be partners as Team Mexico:
And were quickly eliminated.
Knowing the birthday boy’s propensity to pout when losing, we paired him with his talented Uncle Bennett and called them Team USA.
And they won.
…course, their bracket wasn’t too tough, having played Team Mexico early in Round one…
In the middle, were Team Belgium (dictated by Granny’s festive attire — don’t pay any attention to her complaining. She thought we were being too hard on her.)
Paired with her favorite oldest grandson, who had much trouble with bad reffing calls:
Team Sweden: two blond-haired blue-eyed specimens
That struck terror in their opponents with one talented striker…
…and one defensive goon.
And, the dichotomous Team Amsterdam, named for their flashy and somewhat questionable attire:
And also because, like their namesake, they entertained us all day long:
It was a hot, fun day. Tacos for dinner and home-made Buster Bars in lieu of cake, since Charlie didn’t “feel too good for cake” that day.
Also these little morsels of desire:
The Famous Bootleg:
Blend 1 can lemonade and 1 can limeade with one bunch of mint until mint is very fine. Reserve syrup in a pitcher. To make drink, add clear liquor of choice (vodka, gin or rum) with equal amount of syrup and top off with club soda and lots of ice.
Pam’s Caprese Appetizer:
My friend Pam made these for my birthday celebration, and honestly, I had never seen them served this way. I fell in love and have served this to everyone who has stepped in my door in the last two weeks. Slice mozzarella thin, add one leaf basil, top with a slice of tomato. Sprinkle with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Pop one after another into your mouth until you get self conscious.
But ultimately the best part of the day, aside from celebrating Charlie, himself, was watching my mom out on that “soccer field” running around like a crazy woman
Something tells me she’s not gonna like all this attention, but I just had to share these pictures. She looks damn good. She would look damn good for being almost 60, but she’s almost 70!
I get my looks from her.