Tomorrow is Tiny Pants' big 0-5. Somehow the single digits don't have the proper ring to them, do they?
When I was a kid there was the golden birthday rule- you could invite as many people as you were years old. Somehow, that has changed to you can invite anyone you know, have ever met, or thought about meeting, and their siblings, aunts, and cousins. I'm not sure how or why, but birthdays have morphed into extravaganzas that everyone I know says they aren't doing again next year, but…
Secret sidebar: I love throwing these damn things, but don't tell anyone.
I throw a good party, in my opinion, and I've learned not to sweat the details so much. You see, there is a great Mom Birthday Army. When you have a birthday party, all these moms swarm in a well orchestrated militia and set up and organize and hand out cake and smile and help clean up. When the next mom has a party, a different and perhaps overlapping circle of moms pitch in. None of us could ever deal with it all on our own, but none of us have gone down the tubes yet (but my day could be tomorrow).
Some moms have raised the birthday to an art form; I've been to the home party with homemade decorations, cookies, and games, all done perfectly to theme. I've been to the "no presents - only gifts for charity" party, which made me realize my children are spoiled present-hungry buggers whom i have failed as a parent. There was the brilliant mother who had her child write out thank you notes before the party to hand out as everyone left, which I meant to do before tomorrow, but somehow haven't gotten around to yet.
There's a point, though, where the party can get too over the top. We've been to parties with so much going on you need a decompression chamber afterwards to detox from the clowns and ponies and balloon animals all coming at you at once. We have returned from parties with live pets we never intended to obtain. (OK, that was just once, and I am sure the mother of the birthday child counted on the parent's ability to say no if they didn't want a new pet.)
Tomorrow we are having a small get together consisting of everyone my son knows, their siblings, parents, a small petting zoo, and a pinata. What could possibly go wrong?
(Come back tomorrow for funny pictures if I manage to take any in the ensuing chaos.)