Parenting Blog

It's my party and I'll cry if I don't get an Audi

Kid’s birthday parties are out of freakin’ control. Parents are spending small fortunes to throw infants, toddlers and older kids (have you ever glanced at that asinine MTV “Sweet 16” program?)elaborate annual events in what seems to have become a keeping-up-with-the-Jones’ type of parental pee contest. For our daughter’s first two birthdays, we hosted family and a friend or two at our house – which seems almost old-fashion these days. We even prepared the food and baked the cake ourselves… from scratch. The horror!

Although there does seem to be at least a small movement to return to a more modest party experience and regain a bit of control over these events, many folks I know are still going nuts on their precious little darling’s b-days.

Considering the extravagance is usually never requested by the child (at least not until they become accustom to it) and in some cases may be totally lost on them, the events become a “look at us, aren’t we great parents” exercise in flexing monetary muscle.

And I haven’t even mentioned, other than the title of this post, the gifts that some over-fortunate kid’s receive come birthday time!

All that being said, I am tempted to have her 3rd B-Day party at World Cafe Live in Philly, which may be classified as over-the-top. Justin Roberts is playing there very close to her big day in March and we three have been really digging his new disc and the videos of some older songs on his website. The expense, I guess, is not THAT much greater than hosting the event ourselves – if I choose to put dollar amounts on the set up/clean up time involved and the frustration of (some) unruly kids running amok (and never shutting doors behind them as they escape to and return from the backyard… man that bugs me… is it really that difficult to close a damn door?!)

We have a certain sense of pride having in-house parties, even as I bemoan the idea leading up to the date – for the simple fact that two of my main domestic roles are cleaner and cook, making it a rather busy time for yours truly.

From a comment on a previous post, I learned that Rachel and Morgan of Gustafer Yellowgold have, the past, performed as Bert and Mary from Mary Poppins at a kid’s party. Now that would be cool!
If only I could manage to have them perform in our home, thus bringing the live musical entertainment to us! That would be a nice compromise, I think.
I have not even emailed them about this though, as I am sure the cost of bringing them down from Brooklyn to our place would be greater still!

Anyhow, what to do? Do we again have it back at our pad and continue with the traditional party thing or splurge a bit and have a great time at a concert, but risk setting the bar way too high for future parties and ending up trying to out do ourselves every year?

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