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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This may read ridiculous so just bare with me. There seems to be more pressure for parents to have "kid" parties earlier. Our older son had his first kid party when he turned 5. So, why am I feeling guilty about just celebrating our ds's birthday with just us? I just want to do balloons, he loves cars so we are going to a local indoor car race place, and a nice dinner/cake -- with some family. When did you have your first "kid" party? He just started jk too so he has some buddies but really has just started connecting with them.<br>
What are some thoughts on this?
 

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For DS, we have done b-day parties since he was 1. He is VERY social and always wants to have lots of friends over. Even at 1, he actually played with the kids and had a ton of fun.<br><br>
DD is not very social. I did do a party for her when she turned 2 but it was a combined party for her and DS. She had 2-3 friends while DS had 10-12. She didn't want a party for her 3rd so we just did a family dinner and cake and presents. Last year (4yo) was the first time she really had a party.<br><br>
I love doing b-day parties! I am going to be so sad when they actually outgrow wanting to have a big party.
 

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I think this is totally family and kid dependent. We had a very small party for DS when he turned one and it felt too small. But I like the idea of having the first birthday be a celebration for the mother for getting through the first year. So, for DD, we had a big party with *my* friends. For DS we started kid parties at 2, but I have friends whose kids are turning 6 and they have never had a big party and that's ok. I have another friend whose son hated his big 4 year old birthday party.<br><br>
Really, this is a non-guilt issue. I guess I would feel guilty if one of our kids were begging for something and we said no for some reason that I actually didn't think was that good. But really your family car party sounds lovely and it doesn't sound like DS is even asking for anything else. And if he does, "Our family starts kid parties on the 5th birthday" is a perfectly fine response.
 

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We had DS's first party with friends at 2 yo--basically when he was old enough to enjoy play groups. We invite friends of the family who have kids around the same age, so it's really just an excuse for everyone to get together. The adults get to hang out while the kids have an extended play date. We serve food and cake, but we don't go crazy with party games or anything like that. It's just a fun casual thing for everyone. We don't have any family in the area, otherwise I would be inclined to have more of a family-centric birthday for the earlier years.<br><br>
Is your son being invited to birthday parties yet? I would not feel any need to have a kids party until your son asked for one. I have seen kids 2 and 3 years old have complete meltdowns at their own birthday parties because it was overwhelming to them, so I'm not an advocate of starting too early either. We started earlier than I would have guessed, but it's worked out because of the way we do things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
He hasn't asked for a kid party...he just wants to have one friend over. He hasn't been invited to any parties yet either.
 

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We've been having parties since DS was 1, too. He's also very social and loves to 'entertain' and be around people. He had his first kid party - where kids from his school/daycare were invited at his 3 year party. It was such a cool venue that he wanted to invite as many kids as possible - indoor wooden train sets ALL over the place!! They played for hours after the initial cake/present/pinata time was over. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
Next year, in January, he'll have another kid party, but we're gonna keep it at home, invite some kids from school and let them go crazy in our house. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>chkpea</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/14711205"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">He hasn't asked for a kid party...he just wants to have one friend over.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> Awesome. Give him what he wants. Why the guilt? I did do a 1st birthday party for ds but that was more for other people than him, really. He didn't ask for an actual party until he turned 8. The years in between were either just family or something with one friend. One year we went to a museum with the friend and her mother and they came back to our place for pizza and cake.
 

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I've felt that guilt. But not enough to subject myself to a huge party full of kids.<br><br>
We did our first kid party for my older son's 7th bday. He never asked to have friends over for it, but we always did a party with our extended family so there were kids there anyways.
 

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The old school rule of thumb is 1-2 kid friends for the age they are. We only had family for 1, we had family and three families and their kids for 2, and for three we had a whole lot of family (everyone came that year) and three kid families. It seemed like too many people for our house. Next year I may have a kid party, but still want to do the family thing at home. A lot of DS friends had kid parties starting at 2. I don't get it. The whole thing just seems so overwhelming. Even with the 30 people that were here for DS 3rd birthday- he was overwhelmed and did not share well. He is usually a lot more social. I think too many kids is overkill, and frankly I don't want a bunch more toys etc that they would bring as gifts. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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My dd is turning 4 in Dec and we have never done a non-family b-day party for her and are not planning to anytime soon. I love just a small family party (just us and my parents). We still decorate and everything, make our own cake and ice cream, etc. DD is very introverted so she's okay with this.
 

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I find people go waaaay overboard for birthdays around here. Do what feels best for your family.
 

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We had a bday party for K's 1st birthday, I think we invited five or six littles his age, so there were 7 families, nice, small and calm. We didn't do a 2nd bday party, we did a third which was a playdate at our house-so very casual. I wasn't going to do a 4th bday party but he started talking about having a playdate for his birthday, so we are. Again small and very casual.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
thank you all for your responses. We have decided to go with 3 friends and a play date at our house. And yes this is what he wants. We will decorate some cookies - shaped like cars and they can play and have cake. Keep it simple, right? I am all about that but must admit I get caught up in "what everyone else does" syndrome. thanks for keeping things in perspecive
 
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