Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Birthday Party...

Yesterday was Collette's "official" Birthday Party. Now mind you this was not her first for this year, but it was her "official" one. She had one on Thursday evening (her actual birthday), we took her out to dinner and she was thrilled to death when the wait staff all came over and sang "Happy Birthday" to her. She had another one Saturday evening with both sets of Grandparents and her Nana (Great-Grandma). Her "official" party was held at the local kid hangout here. It's a great big warehouse filled with inflatable slides and jumping houses. They play music really loud and the kids get to jump and slide for 90 minutes. It turned out to be lots more fun than I had originally imagined, most of the adults got in on the act and were having just as much fun as the kids! After your jumping session, they herd you into a room filled with picnic tables and you get to have pizza and cupcakes and open gifts. Collette had a blast!

We had the usual relatives come (cousins and their children, Cindi, Waldo and Nichole and several close friends and their children). The problem with kids from school is this... No one EVER RSVP's and so one never knows how many children to plan for. In Collette's class a good majority of the kids have non English speaking parents, so I can understand that it might be difficult to grasp the birthday party concept, or that they may feel intimidated communicating, but the kids know all about birthday parties, you'd think they would want to come and have fun! So, as usual, we invite all fourteen children and two and a sibling show up - this is getting really frustrating for me. I didn't even make goodie bags this year (so terribly unlike me) because I had absolutely NO IDEA how many children to expect - my luck, I make thirty bags and six kids show up - then I have to figure out what to do with all the "goodies" and I've wasted a considerable chunk of change. Only one child even noticed that there weren't any goodie bags and that's because she was trying to scam three extra for all her siblings at home. I was happy to see Collette's best friend from school show up ("mumzy's" little girl) but noticed that "mumzy" herself did not bring her, Daddy did.

I was kind of disappointed that we did not get to throw a big "theme-y" party (last year's was "Pirates" complete with capt'n jack himself) and the year before that was "Elivis's 50's" (I couldn't find an Elvis that year). They're always the talk of the town for months afterward. I always have lots of fun planning them and Collette just plain loves a good party so it works out well. I do have to admit that there is something to be said for just packing your gifts in the car and going home afterward (no cleaning up, no setting up). It was kind of relaxing for a change but not something I'd like to do every year.

Next year......I'm thinking a Jungle Safari.....with maybe a Steve Irwin-type character for entertainment.....I can see it now: Vines hanging all over from the ceilings, giant jungle animals in the corners, safari hats for all - maybe even drinks from a canteen...Collette absolutely LOVES monkeys so, who knows??...


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