Wow, I remember when a birthday party involved sitting in the backyard with a bunch of aunts and uncles and grandparents in lawn chairs. Someone made a sloping chocolate cake with drippy candles and everyone watched you open up the obligatory new swimsuit present. I am a July baby after all. Everyone sang an off key Happy Birthday and the kids were then free to roam the backyard and catch fireflys. End of story.
Well, times have changed since the dark ages of the 1970's my friends. All self respecting parents now must cash in the college fund to have an extravaganza. When Ava turned 2 I swung by the grocery on our way to our friends football party and picked up a Nemo cake. The "party" was the held at my friends house during half time. That's right...15 minutes of cake eating for the kids and a present or two and back to the third quarter and that included clean up. Last year when Ava turned 3, we stepped it up a notch. We ordered Chinese take out and actually ate at the dinner table as a family. Wooo Hooo, that's big stuff for us. The three of us had cake and a few presents. Ok, well our days of seeking to counter balance commercialism, and appreciating the simplicity in life are over I am afraid.
My birthday deprived precious one attended two, yes two, birthday parties this weekend. She has been to the land of milk and honey and she's not coming back for the lame 1/2 time show.
First party, Saturday afternoon had balloon animals, hand painting, and amazing goodie bags to take home. (The goody bag was as nice as the gift we brought.) Lame parent moment. The second was, well sheer unadulterated heaven if you were between the ages of 3 1/2 and 6. I mean how could you not have the time of your life at a place called Sugar Buzz? I am not making that up...it is called Sugar Buzz.
So, Miss Ava is working the circuit now. She is carefully weighing her options. Which are somewhat limited as far as venue since she is a January baby. She is oh so careful not to completely commit to any one option when we talk about what she might like to do for her birthday. She is playing it cool, and keeping the door open. She has another 2 invitations taped to the refridgerator for the month of October. A gymnatics party and a build a teddy bear party...ugh. All these options for a kid who comes from a country where they don't traditionally even celebrate birthdays. Everyone just celebrates another year older at Chinese New Year.
Here's to keeping dialogue open. Teach moderation, and the importance of respecting life which is what a birthday is all about right? Oh crap, who am I kidding...she will only turn 4 once and who can resist a sweet plea for a princess for a day party. Might we cave in and attempt the kiddie cotillion? Stay tuned...