And sometimes you don't need a reason at all! That's how it all started for my grandma and her granddaughters. That first spontaneous party has become a 3 time follow up tradition for us that grows in number and extravagance each time.
The first party was perhaps the best because it was spontaneous. It seems that if you call your grandma late enough in the evening to arrange a visit at the thoughtful suggestion of your cousin, you run the risk of her already being in her pajamas. And if you have any consideration, you insist she not get redressed. And if your grandma is self conscious or silly (I can't decide which) she'll insist that you visit in your pajamas too! Now, it's only reasonable that the little sisters upon seeing the fun about to be had, join the fun. Throw in a short jaunt down the road toward the setting sun, a scrabble game, braided hair, cameras, and some juice, and you have a perfectly memorable evening that reminds you who you are and who you value. The memories are apt to always conjure up a giddy contentedness that compels you to relive the experience.
And so you do. Only now you begin to think you need an excuse other than visiting grandma to show up at her place in your pajamas. After the success of the first party, I can't imagine why a reason is considered necessary. At any rate, a pajama birthday party for grandma, at which we present her a pair of pajamas as a present, seems only appropriate. A few additional cousins are invited last minute and the night is fun. Many different games, juice and snacks, a little acting, a special time of singing together, and a sleep over for the cousins in the basement, cements the sense of belonging deep into our souls. This time however, the only regret is that not all the cousins were invited. The exclusions were not intentional, but they were exclusions that were noticed.
And so, for the sake of everyone experiencing the fun, another party is planned at the first opportunity. This time the instigator of the first visit is preparing for marriage. A pajama party seems a perfect celebration. And celebrate we do. You can't see the counter top for the piles of food brought for the occasion. And there are almost not enough seats to go around. But the conversation is pleasant and a paper version of the game telephone, hilarious! The party is a little more low key than some in the past but still to be treasured for the interaction with family, especially grandma.
No matter how long these parties continue or how soon they cease, the memories of bantering with grandma, watching her delight in the presence and fun of her granddaughters in the comfort of her home, and looking around at the people most like you, will be treasured. I only hope the parties have communicated as much value to grandma as they have to me. I have a hunch they have, because the small community grapevine has found its way back to me on an occasion or two with comments of some of grandma's friends about her parties with her granddaughters.