I Don't Do Parties

Hello. My name is Amber. And I have an addiction.

An addiction to NOT throwing birthday parties for my children.

Birthday parties make me cringe. And break out in cold sweats. And I have been known to feel faint and nauseous when discussing possible party options.

Hospitality is not my thing, and hosting parties at my house is about equal to having a root canal. Picking out party plates does nothing for me except make me anxious, and don't get me started on the party favors. Just don't like it. At all.

In fact, I can count on one hand the number of birthday parties (that friends were invited to) that I've held for my kids on one hand. And combined, my kids have had 20 birthdays. Not such a good record that I've got going on. And those birthday parties were all hosted somewhere other than my house. Like the skating rink. And Chuck E. Cheese. You know...the write the ginormous check, but they do the work for you parties.

All of that to say....I have a problem.

My oldest rascal turns 9 in a week or so. And although the fact that my baby is turning 9 is problem enough for me, my bigger predicament is that he wants a party. Rather, he has a notebook full of plans for this party.

A baseball party.

At the baseball field.

And everyone is to wear either a white shirt or a blue shirt. And we are to have a baseball game.

And his mother is about to have a panic attack.

Because, remember...I don't do parties.

Now before you get all "Suck it up, Cupcake" on me, hear me out.

Because I'm so adamant in my whole No Party Policy, the younger two rascals (who have already had their 2009 birthdays) didn't have friend parties this year. There were no party plates. And no treat bags. And certainly no baseball games turned birthday party.

So...in the interest of not playing favorites, and in the interest of protecting myself from the incessant "It's Not Fair" montage that I know would ensue for the next 567 days, how in the world of all things good and blessed, can I give that boy a party?

Because....really. It isn't fair. And maybe even more than that....

This mama don't do parties.

So...what's a mama to do? And before you start, save the whole, "Just start giving the kids a party" thing. Because even if I tell you that I'll try...I know me, and I know that I won't.

Oh...and don't start feeling all sorry for the rascals. They get a family party (complete with spoilage from the grandparentage), and a homemade cake that is decorated by hand by me, and really groovy presents.

That is, of course, if their mother doesn't forget their birthday. Ahem. But we won't discuss that again. No need to drudge up my excellent parenting skilz.


Jessica said...

I am cracking up right now. Did I not JUST post about my party dilemma and you told me very assuredly that you DO NOT THROW PARTIES. Guess you spoke too soon! I say, humor the kid. Kiddos love birthday parties and yours are getting old enough that they're going to want to celebrate with their friends. Let me know if you need any help/ideas. You know Wilton makes a cool 3-D baseball cake pan...

Jim said...

Well, let me see!!! What did we do to you that caused this aversion to birthday parties? There was such a gap between your Sis and you, I'm not sure if we had a "it's not fair" kind of reaction, at least not regarding parties. Well, back to your present delimma - truly it doesn't sound fair - can you rationalize that with Kea? How about doing an "un-birthday" party for all three at a neutral time - minus the gifts, plates and hats, etc., just for good old-fashion fun and keep your present family birthday tradition intact?

I know as one of the "spoilers" we don't help much. (wink, wink) But we'd sure like to help someway.

For some reason the song "it's my party and I'll cry if I want to" started running through my head with your blog.

Looking forward to being with you all tomorrow.

Mich said...

Do you need me to start planning your parties for you? Because you know I love it!!!

As for the fair...nothing in life is fair, unfortuantely the two younger ones are too young to understand that. I don't know sis, what to tell you. Maybe we will discuss it while we are on vacation. :)

Stephanie said...

Hey Amber,

I'm about an hour and a half away from Pigeon Forge. Not to far.

As for the party....if you don't have one, what will lil Keaton do with that notebook full of plans?

Andrea said...

Parenting is all about making the rules up as we go, right? So how about this. From now on, it's your family tradition to do a "home" birthday party when you turn 9. But you have to help plan the whole deal. It sounds like he already has, so tell him that you and your husband will provide the funds, the transportation, plus the manual labor to make this thing work but he has to plan everything. Your boys are old enough to assemble treat bags. That's one of my girls' jobs the day of or the day before the party.

This is the FIRST year my kids are NOT having a party. Instead we are doing something big for each birthday. We went to Disneyland for Heather's. Stephanie's is coming up and we are planning something special for her too.

Andrea said...

Oh, and good luck with this.

Carpoolqueen said...

I'm with ya' on the party thing. But I'm fortunate in that I only have to do one a year that covers everyone, so it helps.

Emily said...

Hmmm... sounds like you're in a pickle!

Could you take him to see a game instead of the big party? Although that might cost the same. Good luck with that! ha!

Jessica said...

I agree with someone up there who said that they get to have a party when they are 9. You do this one and then you only have two to go! and you get some time to plan the next two! I love birthday parties! Ave's is going to be a luau theme at the waterpark on Sunday, you should bring your rascals. that is, if they like hanging with the 3year old crowd.

and p.s. I concur that we shoud meet already!

Ginger@From The Cocoon said...

actually...my kids turned 17 & 14 this month and guess what...no party...I didn't even bake a cake...and worse than that...I forgot to blog about them on their special day!!

So...I'm all about not doing parties...they're resilient..and will survive. Save the money for something improtant...like...a moms day out to regain sanity

Amy Fulmer said...

Ok. So.

This one time. At Charity Ball. For an auction we had a sports party. And the deal was some clever person came up with the idea that hiring a few "famous" high school baseball players to play baseball with the little guys at the high school field would rock their world. I think there were practice jerseys involved. And apparently grown folks agree, because the party went for a couple hundred dollars. So maybe do you know some way cooler older fellas who could handle the entertainment portion of the party? Cuz then you would be left with Cracker Jacks (prize included) and cupcakes.

And, technically, the oldest should have the first friend birthday party-birth order and all. But since it is a baseball game, the two little ones could invite a friend or three?

Now I'm gonna go not plan a birthday party. Because we are (thankfully) not there yet. HEHE.

Nina Diane said...

I'm with ya! I was so glad when my kids became too old for that. All of that gift bags, kids running around....whew.....glad it's done! Tell the 2 younger ones they can have a party when they turn 9!

Cathy said...

We started out from the very beginning saying that they wouldn't have a party every year....maybe just every other year...maybe.

I say you tell the younger rascals that when THEY turn 9 that's when The Party happens.;) Then you're covered from having to do future parties. OR you can do what our friends do and let them invite just a few friends for a movie night w/ popcorn and sleepover party. No party games. No decorating. Not as many extra kids.:)

And now I have "it's my party and I'll cry if I want to." going through my head. Jim-Dad-Thanks for that!

mimi said...

I do not do parties either!! I even go one step farther...we have not even had one at one of those places. Zip, nada. We only do family parties. Usually at my mom's house because..like you...I break out in sweats and grow faint just thinking about it!

Stephanie @ My Answered Prayer said...

Ok...so when we get back we'll get together and plan this thing....do it for Keaton....he's such a trooper...he's always the oldest and always feels like the oddball out so do it!!!! I'll help with it.

Although...Emily did touch on something....what about a travs game and let him take 2 or 3 friends...we could go too so you'd have enough seats in the van...or better yet...church is already having a travelers outing. Just sayin'

Elizabeth said...

I wish I could help you out, but I'm the worst party planner in the world. All of my friends got those skills. I mean skilz.

I think you should plan a sleepover! Ha Ha.

Michele said...

Stick to your guns girl!!! What about getting the fam, head out to the baseball field and play a game of baseball together. . . then load everyone up (the fam that is) and get some ice cream. How's that for compromise? (someone may have already suggested this . . . I didn't read the other comments . . . if so, ignore me please)

I do parties here at my house for my kids, but very simple parties. I will usually plan some sort of activity (i.e, treasure hunt, make a bracelet) something easy. Goody bags? If I even do them . . . consist of candy. I just had one mom thank me at Alec's recent b-day party for just doing candy. She said, "I hate it when it looks like the parent spent more on the goody bag than I did on the present." Amen!!!

I can't wait to hear what you decide.

lisa@littlesliceoflife said...

I'm with you on the parties. I HATE planning them.

That said, I have planned a few and I'll help you plan one! And you can tell the other two boys that they get a party when they turn 9. That way you only have to do one every few years but it's still fair.

In fact, I would only do parties for years that are multiples of 9 so the next one you're liable for is the 18th and what kind of 18-year old wants his mom to plan his party? So you're off the hook!