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Does anyone think birthday parties are getting over the top? - Page 2

post #21 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I'll admit to paying extra to have parties somewhere other than my house. It's just so so so much easier. But I am not in competition and I don't have any expectations for anyone else's parties. I'm just lazy.
Oh yeah, me too
post #22 of 56
My DD's 4th was done out of the home, but I don't think it was over the top. It was a tea party, and I brought straw hats and fake flowers and ribbon for the girls to decorate the hats as an activity/party favor. I had to bake the cake because of DD's egg allergy, but the tea service was a big hit and it was so cute seeing the little girls in their big hats nibbling finger sandwiches and sipping tea (or in one case water). There were actually only five kids, ages 3-12, plus two teenagers and about five adults, mostly family. The only reason we even DID the party at a tea house instead of on my mom's back porch was because I thought my dad and stepmom would be more comfortable at a neutral location.

Then they cancelled on me at the last minute and weren't even there. Hmph.

Still, the party was a big hit but for DD's 5th I'd rather not shell out quite so much--though $10/child and $5/adult plus a gratuity wasn't really all that expensive compared to parties at kids' party venues DD's been invited to.

If DD had been in daycare/preschool this year, I'd have done what I did last year and just taken vegan chocolate cupcakes to snack time in her classroom.

I like that "limit one kid per year of age invited" idea. That's actually what DD had this year, but they were her cousins and my best friend's 2 kids, not peers out of a classroom where a kid might feel pressured to invite everybody rather than choose favorites.
post #23 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravin View Post

I like that "limit one kid per year of age invited" idea. That's actually what DD had this year, but they were her cousins and my best friend's 2 kids, not peers out of a classroom where a kid might feel pressured to invite everybody rather than choose favorites.
We do this too. Ds's b-day is late summer, so we have the advantage of not having to invite classmates unless we want to!
post #24 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
The parent handbook for my DS's preschool actually mentions this! It says (and I think I've heard this elsewhere, just as a general etiquette tip) that if you're passing out invitations at school, then all the kids must be invited, but if you're passing out invitations privately, then you can just invite those kids who are close with your DC.
Yeah, we still got flack for the few kids we invited with privately sent invitations. Kids still talk (at the older ones do) and parents find out. It's such a tricky situation, but you have to do what you feel is right and what makes sense to your bank acct.
post #25 of 56
Birthday parties are getting way out of hand. We went to a party last year and the theme was Peter Pan. The invitation was more elaborate than my wedding invitation so I knew it would be over the top. When we arrived the kids were given wings to dress as Tinkerbell and a felt hat and sword to dress as Peter Pan. We went into the backyard and they had rented two rides (one was one of those swinging ships), a bounce house, trampoline, train that went around the house. There was also a face painter, ice cream booth and people dressed up as Mickey, Minnie, Peter Pan, Tinkerbell. The whole thing was catered and included two huge cakes. My kids had a blast (http://farm1.static.flickr.com/249/4...cad71987f0.jpg) but I left thinking, "Wow all that for a three year old! Wonder what it will be like when she turns 16."
post #26 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden View Post
Yeah, we still got flack for the few kids we invited with privately sent invitations. Kids still talk (at the older ones do) and parents find out. It's such a tricky situation, but you have to do what you feel is right and what makes sense to your bank acct.
Yeah, I've heard of that happening too (with kids talking at school and other kids' feelings being hurt). Is it just a preschool thing? Because in elementary school, most kids have a definite set of friends -- I can't imagine having wanted to (or having been expected to) invite my *whole* elementary school class just because I wanted to invite my two girlfriends who happened to be in the class. Does this odd expectation end in kindergarten (hopefully)?
post #27 of 56

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Edited by RainCoastMama - 2/26/14 at 10:35pm
post #28 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Yeah, I've heard of that happening too (with kids talking at school and other kids' feelings being hurt). Is it just a preschool thing? Because in elementary school, most kids have a definite set of friends -- I can't imagine having wanted to (or having been expected to) invite my *whole* elementary school class just because I wanted to invite my two girlfriends who happened to be in the class. Does this odd expectation end in kindergarten (hopefully)?
Not where I live. It is expected that you invite all the boys or girls in your class. You don't have to invite both genders though.
post #29 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by maya44 View Post
Not where I live. It is expected that you invite all the boys or girls in your class. You don't have to invite both genders though.
Huh. I guess I'll just have to be "rude" then, 'cause that seems crazy to me.
post #30 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I'll admit to paying extra to have parties somewhere other than my house. It's just so so so much easier. But I am not in competition and I don't have any expectations for anyone else's parties. I'm just lazy.
This is me too.
post #31 of 56
Yes, I think they are getting out of hand.
post #32 of 56
I haven't read through the replies, but I have to say, yes, I think many parties go over the top anymore! Especially where I live!

What really bothers me is seeing parents spend gobs of money on a party, inviting everyone, and it being all about the parent and not about the child. I've seen lots of birthday children become very overwhelmed at their own parties because their parents plan these parties that are more like smallish wedding receptions.

We've tried combining our kids' birthday celebrations(they are both 1 month apart from each other), etc. But the best party we ever had was when our DD had a slumber party when she turned 10. That was a lot of fun! (Except I was dead tired in the morning, but oh well!)
post #33 of 56
Ds will be turning 6 and up to this point they have all been at home. We do get our cakes from Costco because they are huge and only $14.99 for a huge decorated bakery cake.

For the first few years we just did pizza and veggie trays, that sort of thing, then another year ds wanted a large sub sandwich. But then the next year I hired a caterer who actually was a lot less expensive then getting one of those huge sub sandwiches, ingredients for sides, paper products, etc. and they did all the setup.

This year though, ds in in K, and for the first time he's inviting his whole class and other friends to Pump It Up, one of those party inflatables places. I have to provide cake (Costco again) and it is going to be pretty expensive. 32 Kids are invited plus their parents will be there. But after this year it's going to be a greatly reduced number of kids, probably just his good friends. He understands this, and he also understands that the party is a lot of his gift. I am really excited about having it somewhere other than our house. Every year I have a huge Halloween party for him, and his birthday is only a few weeks before Christmas. Add to that the fact we ALWAYS get sick right before his party and I am just exhausted. My in-laws come in the fall as well for 10 days - so this year dh and I decided were going to let the party place do the work. All I have to do is send out the invites, pay the bill, and pick up the Costco cake. I can't wait!
post #34 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I'll admit to paying extra to have parties somewhere other than my house. It's just so so so much easier. But I am not in competition and I don't have any expectations for anyone else's parties. I'm just lazy.
Heh, sign me up for this boat. I'm the same way. I'd rather have the party somewhere else, just because of the clean up before and after the party. We did my son's 4th at the local bounce house (place filled with jumper things) he loved it, and the place did everythign for me. It was stress free, and the kids had a blast. I'm certianley not trying to one up anyone... I just want my kid to have fun, and to make it less stressful for the family. IE, me not stressing out! lol
post #35 of 56
We do homemade parties but I really love the idea of holding it somewhere else - we just can't afford that one. ITA that parties are going way out of control, my sis does homemade parties too, when she gave the party treat bag away at the end one child turned around and said 'Is that all? It's cr@p!' Sis replied that he could give it back if it was that bad - he didn't, as parents I think we have to be really careful about the message we give to kids about expecting so much when at a party or holding one - a birthday party is the celebration of birth and a important for the family and those involved but we don't have to invite all and sundry. Just my tuppence worth!
PS I am stunned that people would phone to ask where their invite is - that is astounding! Whether they think it's lost or not!
post #36 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I'll admit to paying extra to have parties somewhere other than my house. It's just so so so much easier. But I am not in competition and I don't have any expectations for anyone else's parties. I'm just lazy.

Add me to this list. I hate the celan up after having the party at our house.
As for other people being over the top, well, that i their perogative. I don't feel compelled to compete with it. I throw the kind of party I want and they throw the kind of party they want.
post #37 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kewb View Post
Add me to this list. I hate the celan up after having the party at our house.
As for other people being over the top, well, that i their perogative. I don't feel compelled to compete with it. I throw the kind of party I want and they throw the kind of party they want.
I agree with everything you're saying. I just dislike the trend. I don't think it's good for kids--the birthday child or the guests. As the Birthdays Without Pressure website points out, it's really representative of excessive consumerism in our society....
post #38 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Yeah, I've heard of that happening too (with kids talking at school and other kids' feelings being hurt). Is it just a preschool thing? Because in elementary school, most kids have a definite set of friends -- I can't imagine having wanted to (or having been expected to) invite my *whole* elementary school class just because I wanted to invite my two girlfriends who happened to be in the class. Does this odd expectation end in kindergarten (hopefully)?
At my kids' school it's not unusual to invite the whole class but classes are tiny 6-12 kids so it's not so many kids. It's also not uncommon to invite just close friends. It goes both ways. I think in schools with larger classes, the invite the whole class thing ends by Kindergarten.
post #39 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I'll admit to paying extra to have parties somewhere other than my house. It's just so so so much easier. But I am not in competition and I don't have any expectations for anyone else's parties. I'm just lazy.
Same here!

And I make the invitations because it is something I enjoy, not because I am trying to show-off or one-up someone else. I love to scrapbook so I spend a lot of time making the invites (and a lot more money than if I would just buy standard ones!). It is a hobby and I would hate for someone to think that I was trying to do an "over the top" party because of my invites.
post #40 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I'll admit to paying extra to have parties somewhere other than my house. It's just so so so much easier. But I am not in competition and I don't have any expectations for anyone else's parties. I'm just lazy.
This would be me too!
We have back to back holiday birthdays in our family it's just too stressful for me. I can handle doing the family parties, but doing a kids party too is just too much.
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