Here's the thing. I'm not a fan of birthday parties. I think they can get out of hand and you drop a crap load of money on renting a place, on food, on loot bags, on presents, on decorations....on...you get the picture. And I'm not really sure how much your kids remember them.
The one party I remember, and I think I only do because I have a picture of it, was a party where we all made hats. Yup. Construction paper, stickers, crayons and hats. Toss in a cake and done - Bob's your uncle.
Will was pretty excited about his birthday this year so into planning mode I went. Last fall, a friend mentioned how she rented the public pool for her daughters birthday party. My eyes lit up. No one at my house?! Hmmm. My friend Beth's eyes lit up. We decided then and there that for our kids 4th birthday's, we'd share the pool and have a duo party for her twins and Will.
So that's what we did. On Sunday, we had mutual friends and family, and our own friends pile into the local pool for the low price of $140. Beth went to Costco and stocked up on snacks. I handled the cake and a few decorations. Neither of us wanted to have presents since our kids would be spoiled at family celebrations so Beth came up with the BEST idea. Please steal it. Every kid brought a wrapped book from home that they weren't interested in anymore. We put them in a box and then when they left, everyone, including the birthday boys and girl, got to take home something to unwrap. So. No lootbags, no presents and no one feeling awkward about coming empty handed. We swam for an hour and partied in the park for an hour. Done, cleaned up and fun by all...all in two and a half hours.
Everyone, including the birthday kids, loved it. The friend who told me about the pool? She had her party the day before. We upped the ante with tablecloths and a folding table. Meryl and her husband say next year they're topping us by bringing gin and tonics to the Saturday bash. What the hell will we do to top it on the Sunday?
What about you? Big birthday parties or low key goodness??