My beautiful daughter turned 6 years old last month. After much deliberation, the hubby and I decided that this was the year we were going to throw her a party. Not an intimate gathering at the house, with a select few, huddled round sandwiches and jammie dodgers but a real party. Venue, catering, the whole ball of wax!
Our girl chose the place and made a list of who she wanted to celebrate with and in a matter of weeks, we had a princess themed party planned for 19 little ladies. Against the backdrop of today’s life, it was so nice to have something normal and happy going on. Birthdays should be celebrated and children’s lives should be free of stress and negativity.
During the entire party planning shenanigans, there was about 4 minutes of sheer panic over one thing….
What if no one turns up?
I needn’t have worried. All physical invites were followed up with a digital invite, courtesy of a WhatsApp group…I didn’t even know how to set one of those up so I was totally winging it from the start. Within moments my phone was popping off with happy and glorious acceptances. Everyone that my girl had invited was coming! I was thrilled, for like a minute; then reality hit… crap! They’re all coming! Every. Single. One!
I quite enjoyed putting everything together. The cakes, treats and party bags. Only had a slight twinge that I was being taken for a mug, when I found myself buying and wrapping other people’s gifts to my child. I wrapped each present in different paper, changed my handwriting and thought of every little detail. Had to really, everyone else was busy. I just nap all day clearly!
The day of the party was here and because I had been so diligent/anal in my planning up to this point, I found myself with very little to do. The quiet, pierced by a constant nagging feeling that I had forgotten something.
The party was in full swing and it was a roaring success. Everyone had a great time and it will be remembered for just that. No one got hurt, no one was bored, no one choked on their food and no one was without a party bag on departure. Seeing everyone laughing and singing happy birthday to my daughter and how special she felt in that moment was everything. I am so proud of her, I was proud of us as a family. It felt amazing to forget the world and all its problems and be exactly where we wanted to be.
“Well done! You can relax now, it’s all over” said one parent to me.
Little did he know that I will not relax until the next day, when they all return to school and I know that no one got food poisoning! I really detest how my brain works sometimes.
Back at home, my daughter couldn’t believe the amount of presents she had received. She was so busy playing with her friends that the gift aspect had never occurred to her. It will take several days to open them all, it feels like a little Christmas in the Summer!
With today’s expectation to film or photograph your child opening a gift, to then send it on to the friend or family member that generously provided said treat, I’m always prepared. Gone are the days of innocent whoops of delight, at just about anything, including an empty box. We are now firmly in that phase of blunt statements and truth bombs!
As I pass a rather soft present to my child from my in-laws, I have my phone recording the whole experience. I can’t wait to send a lovely video to them capturing her delight. She shakes it, feels it then says,
“If this is clothes, I’m not happy!”
Needless to say, I stopped the recording immediately and opted to send a photograph with thanks instead. It was technically clothes but It was a gorgeous Snow White fancy dress costume, which unfortunately we had to return as it was too small. One of our gifts was also met with my daughter’s arched brows. It was a lovely rainbow writing set, which I thought she would like as she loves to write…not today!
My parents, however, nailed it! Her Barbie and Chelsea playset was a total winner and she has been playing with it ever since. It’s funny how her friends’ gifts were all winners and the treats from us and the wider family were a mixed bag in terms of reactions. I guess we are not down with the kids!
I have no time to dwell on that though. I now have my husband’s 40th birthday to plan…