Usually, when I plan my kids' birthday parties, I let them choose a theme and then plan food, games, decorations around the theme. We've done a luau, under the sea, The Incredibles, Disney, horses and Thomas to name a few. This year that's gone out the window! Either I'm getting too old, or I'm finally getting a clue that this is done more for the parents than for the kids. I remember asking my son and his friend if they'd like me to put together some games for this year's party and they both responded, "NO!" in unison. OK. OK. I get it!
I never had or expected having a birthday party every year but I've created those expectations in my kids. It's been a combination of peer pressure (all my friends think this is what should be done), having the disposable income to put them together, and my view that it's not such a bad thing. My family thinks I'm spoiling my kids. I kind of am but they're not really that bad (that's what all parents of spoiled kids say, right?). No, really. I know a lot of kids who are WAY more spoiled than mine. My kids listen to authority figures and don't talk back, they don't expect presents beyond Christmas and their birthdays, they have kind hearts, and they say please and thank you. I think we're on the right track so I'm going to keep throwing them birthday parties as long as they want them!
Last night my son had a sleepover. He invited four little boys (but one chickened out). They had a great time! We borrowed a Game Cube from a friend with a couple of Pokemon games and some Pokemon DVD's and they played outside and ate pizza and brownies. That's all they wanted! Here was the most popular activity which involved gaining speed on a scooter or skateboard and then flying off of it and rolling down a hill. They did it for hours!
The other big hit was the game cube, of course!
I'm exhausted and glad the birthdays are over for another year. It's a love/hate thing for me for sure! I hope they will remember these days fondly, though. That's why I do it.