I am somewhat apprehensive about entering the crazy world of children's birthday parties. My own memories of birthday parties were pretty low key. I'm an August baby, which usually meant all my girl friends coming over and hanging out in the backyard. When I was 10 we hit the drive-in together. Most of the parties were sleepovers. Much of our time was passed simply laughing and giggling and hanging out. Nothing high-maintenance or that required extensive planning. And you know what? I kind of liked it that way. I even know a lot of adults prefer themed parties, ranging from time periods (like the roaring '20's) to movie themes (like "Pulp Fiction.") If I threw myself a party now, it would likely be barbecue and volleyball and just hanging out gabbing.
Lately I've had a peek at the other side of children's birthday parties. I've always known that some kids like parties themed, but to me that meant nothing more than paper plates and party hats. I don't even do specially decorated cakes.
An acquaintance of mine recently had a birthday party for her 7 year old daughter. It started off with her daughter wanting to go bowling, and then, as she writes, "spiraled from there." It was '50's themed. Here are a few things she did for the party:
- sewed poodle skirts for the girls and t-shirts for the boys
- used old 45's for the invitations, and made a personalized record label for the invites
- refreshments were milkshakes, and cupcakes decorated like records
- back home for a hula hoop contest, bubble gum blowing, the twist, a drag race, and the limbo
Wow. I know everyone has their talents, and I can easily acknowledge this isn't one of mine. I grew tired reading her account of the party and just thinking of what went into the planning! It makes me grateful for boys who will hopefully be happy with a baseball or football game and burgers on the barbecue. Oh, wait. We have only winter birthdays. Perhaps I'll take up my parents' solution for my December sister of having her party with friends in the late spring. That seems like an easier solution than hosting a bunch of boys inside the house, or doling out a ton of money to take them out to a special place.
What were some of your favourite birthday party memories? Did you bask in the glory of intricate plans or prefer a more laid-back approach?