Tuesday, July 22, 2008

We're Going on a Trip in our Favorite Rocket Ship


A few weeks ago I caught about ten minutes of an Oprah episode where another family was bemoaning the fact that they were in debt. Ever intrigued by other's turmoil (hence the psychology degree), I listened as the wife of this family discussed the crazy amount of money she had spent on her children's birthday parties in years past. Such parties included a trip to the spa for elementary age girls for "mani's and pedi's", fake snow delivered to their house, elaborate carnival themes, and destination parties.

I likely rolled my eyes as this lady attempted to defend her choice to dish out $2,000 in an attempt to create a winter wonderland in their California backyard.

Isaac's third birthday is in less than two weeks and I am in full party planning mode. Despite my hostility to the lady on Oprah for having such expensive parties, I find myself having to keep my own desires/wishes/crazy ideas in check when planning our kids' parties.

When Isaac turned one, we had a safari themed affair (Read about it here and here). We went so far as to contemplate creating a large display where party go-ers could stick their head through a hole in order to have their picture taken in a safari-esque jungle. That never happened, but I did go a bit crazy on turning our entire house into Party Zone Central, staying up all hours of the night crafting odds and ends so that Isaac could ring in that first full year of life in style. I needed about a three day nap when the whole thing was over.

I learned my lesson with that party and now attempt to curb my creative desires and keep things reasonable. Rather than inviting the entire preschool class and an odd assortment of our adult friends, we are sticking with family and a small amount of Isaac's buddies. There will be no bounce house or sledding hill. We might actually kick it old-school and play a game of musical chairs. After much thinking and pouring over a variety of party supply magazines, Isaac decided upon a Little Einsteins theme. He is terribly excited and is counting down the days until party time (which can be quite perplexing since he sometimes considers the morning and afternoon two separate days since they are divided by naptime...we are working on that).

Now, if you will excuse me I am off to Google "How to Make a Life-Size Rocket".

I did say I was keeping it semi-reasonable, didn't I?

4 comments:

Amber Smith said...

It sounds like you are making a good decision. With Mary Alice, I planned and planned to make her birthdays extra memorable. She doesn't even remember her 4 year old party and barely remembers her 5 year old party. With Major, we've gone the family only route. Maybe next year we will have a friends birthday party? All that to say... You are smart to save the sledding hill and other over the top ideas until Isaac is a little bit older. :)

Jennifer said...

yep, it's really easy to get sucked into the big parties. I will say that I do spend a bit more than I ever thought I would (however nowhere near creating a winter wonderland in my yard) mostly because I pay to have it somewhere. Its worth it to me to pay more to host it somewhere that includes an assistant and someone to clean up after we walk away. On the other hand though, I usually keep it simple but creative. I'm sure you have looked at Nick Jr website but I got some great ideas there when we had Hudson's 4th bday at the zoo. It was a Diego theme and I got some great ideas there. I was able to make/print most of the decorations, goody bags,ect....so the cost wasn't too bad in the end.

My biggest issue with bday parties is the goody bag. It seems that everyone tries to make them bigger and better and when it comes time for your own child's party most of us feel pressured to spend a lot in this area.

Good luck with the planning and can't wait to see some pictures. I know you'll make it great!

Robin said...

I'm sure Isaac's birthday party will be just perfect! And if it's not, he probably won't remember anyway! :)

Good luck!
Robin

p.s. We are headed to Searcy this weekend and will say hi to your folks if we see them!

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