Friday, May 16, 2008

DCMM: This Year's Party Theme is "Slapdash"

I've found that one of the things I'm good at as a parent is being prepared. I'm rarely caught without an extra diaper or a desperately needed snack, and if we're going out somewhere, I usually have everything we need. And then some.

The same thing goes for my kids' birthday parties. I'm always prepared with plans, invites, guest lists, and activities ahead of time. Not so this year. This year I am totally screwed.

I throw a good party, if I do say so myself. Especially children's birthday parties. I tend to go simple (a sundae-decorating party here, a trip on a trolley there, some water balloons waaaay over there), but I always have a theme (e.g. cooking, trains, beach).

This year I planned a joint party for my 5-year-old and soon to be 3-year-old without properly thinking it out. And by "planned," I mean "set a date."

I chose guests that my kids like and play with (which is no small feat, considering one of them doesn't much care for other children) and who have properly aged siblings that complement the theme of "Forced to Have a Joint Party."

Hey! I have a theme!

Suddenly, I have 16 kids coming, a party date of tommorrow (!), an unready house, and no idea of what activities to force the children to participate in. I'm not one of those people who thinks it's important to have a clown, a pony, and a moonbounce at your child's catered birthday party, but I do think I should greet my guests with something more than, "Um, hi. Here's some cake."

There's nothing like wrecking two kids' birthday parties in one shot.

How's this sound for a consistent theme? Musical chairs, followed by a rousing game of Pin the Light Saber on the Jedi, followed by (mumble, mumble), and (mumble). Then pizza and cake (topped with a Transformer for one child and Thomas the Tank Engine for the other). Then the kids can beat the hell out of the Darth Vader piƱata my mom bought my son as a decoration for a different party. Then goody bags (filled with dinosaur, race car, and Winnie the Pooh paraphernalia). Then home.

I'm not completely panicking though because, fortunately, three- and five-year-olds are not very picky when it comes to parties. I think I have the main things covered: cake and goody bags. And ice cream.

Also fortunately, birthday party preparedness is not a pre-requisite for good parenting.

Original DC Metro Moms Blog post.

See how the party went at Jean's blog, Stimeyland.

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