There are some holidays that you can get away with blowing off. You’re tired. You should be able pick and choose where and when you want to put in that extra effort. No one will ever hold it against you if you want to dress yourself as a giant turkey for Thanksgiving. Just don’t expect the rest of us to do the same. Fair?
But the one annual festivity you can’t ignore is your child’s birthday. There is although one exception, and that is if you’re in exile on an deserted island with no way to plan a party: no phone, no party planning skills, no coconuts to make alcohol free cocktails. And if you find yourself saying to people, “We’re just going to do something simple this year”, it means you’re most likely looking for approval to slack off. And why wouldn’t you? Kids parties have become insane. Who can possibly keep up?
Recently Allana couldn’t help but comment on a very snazzy pair of shoes her daughter’s friend was wearing. They were covered in sparkles and lit up as she walked. The child’s mother wasn’t sure how to answer when Allana inquired where she might purchase a similar pair of shoes.
“Oh..ummm…I’m not sure. They were the take away gift at a birthday party we just went to.”
Huh? What happened to the classic loot bag with dollar store pencils and fake tattoos?
“Yeah…apparently the new trend is that you have to buy every kid a present who comes to the party.”
Say what?! Please tell me this isn’t true.
Samantha handles similar situations with ease and grace…by not going to any parties, ever. She would however like to state for the record that she does give her children the option to go to parties, or to have one, and they aren’t interested. Also, in New York there seems to be no such thing as a ‘drop-off’ party, so every child’s birthday party just ends up with a lot of children racing around drunk on juice boxes and gummy worms, and a bunch of sad parents in ‘weekend-casual-cashmere’ looking like they would pay any amount of money to be at home sipping coffee and reading the paper.
“I would honestly rather be dipped in hot wax and rolled around on carpet tacks than attend a single child’s birthday party again in my lifetime.” Quote, unquote by Samantha Bee.
So here are our top 10 ways to keep your child’s birthday party under control:
- Do not buy gifts for the children coming to your party. Why? We refuse to answer this question.
- Do kick it old school. Whatever happened to the party in the basement? Allana distinctly remembers her mother doing 12 loads of laundry while throwing her a 10th birthday party.
- If you’re child has already attended 5 princess birthday parties please, for the love of God, come up with a different theme. Not just for the kids, but for us…please. We’re begging you (Well, Allana is, Sam will not show up.)
- Do throw a party that suggests “No gifts”. We know. INSANE. But really, think about it. Watching a child open presents at a party while surrounded by other screaming children is quite similar to watching a pack of hyenas eat a buffalo.
- Don’t stick around at the party. Don’t you have something to do? An errand to run? No one wants to feel bad that they didn’t purchase wine to serve you. Get out while you can! No really, just go. (New York – please take note)
- On that note. Children’s birthday parties are also a great reason to gather friends and throw a party. Make it clear if it’s for parents. Pop the champagne! Pass around the catered hors d’oeuvres. Just don’t forget about lighting the candles on the cake for the birthday kid.
- NO JUICE. Unless you’re a fan of screaming. (see Sam’s response)
- Don’t invite people who hate parties. (I love you Samantha Bee and think you look fantastic in cashmere)
- Just go for it. Blow it up. Drink some wine. Watch as the cheezies get crushed into your imported persian carpet and accept the fact that this is your life for at least the next decade.
- Or, go to Chuck E. Cheese, sit in the corner and pretend you don’t know anyone.
p.s. Allana loves parties. Please invite her. Keep in mind she may show up as a giant turkey.