Gwen is always announcing, “I’m four and a half!” to anyone who will listen. I love the half year kids tack on. She’s been four and a half for quite some time. At least since she stopped telling people she’s almost five – days after she turned four. Her birthday is in two weeks and according to her, she will be four and a half until then.
Although I shouldn’t judge. I have been known to do similar things with my age. “I will be 30 on my next birthday.” Of course this is days after I turned 29. I think I did that all that year. I missed out on being the age everyone pretends to be. Now I don’t even remember how old I am and since I don’t do math in my head I’ll tell you my birthdate and make you figure it out!
That reminds me, when we first moved in the Relief Society President came over to visit. She was asking me all these get to know you questions. Some information she was writing down because it would be useful for the other sisters like my address and phone number. Then she asked what my birthday was. I should have told her a month and a day. That’s all she wanted to know. But since I had seen so many new doctors after finding out I was pregnant I said, “Twelve seven seventy-seven!” As soon as the numbers came out of my mouth I realized what a dork I sounded like and quickly apologized.
Anyway, this post was supposed to be about Gwen and the executive decision we have made regarding her birthday party this year.
We have been throwing birthday tea parties for Gwen the last two years. It’s been a lot of fun. And since I have a tendency to overthink everything I also get the impression that these parties have made our friends uncomfortable. I’m sure I’m making mountains out of molehills but last year especially I felt like my friends thought we went too far. I scored awesome deals from Halo Heaven but I think people wished we would stop giving their daughters so much stuff. Too many party favors.
That little, possibly untrue, insecurity really has little bearing on our decision to scrap the party this year. The biggest reason why we want to skip doing a party is because frankly Gwen doesn’t need any more toys. She is completely spoiled and wants for nothing. While I could tell guests no gifts are required it’s a birthday party. The only way I could see guests actually not bringing gifts is if we had a party at the park. I’ve seen parents invite a bunch of kids to a local park for a play date and cupcakes. The cupcakes are as party as it gets. Those are great birthday parties when the weather can be counted on.
Originally we wanted to have a destination party. Doesn’t that sound so posh! We wanted to have the party at Build A Bear Workshop. It would be great since we could actually invite boys, including her boys (her brothers). But we decided to save ourselves the money and put it towards our “surprise” trip to Disneyland this year.
The problem is she has blabbed about her Build A Bear party to every single friend she has, including our next door neighbor we carpool to school with who was never going to be invited since she’s Gavin’s age! This morning Elena was asking about her party. It was awkward. Gwen said, “I can’t talk about it or Mom and Dad say we’ll just have the party at home!” Gwen has no idea we’ve already decided to not have the party. Actually we will but not the way she thinks we will. None of us have been to Build A Bear so it will be a family party. I can handle three new stuffed toys in the house as opposed to the alternative – three new stuffed toys plus several new gifts from all her friends.
Being a parent is so much harder than I thought it would be.
At least others can learn from our emotionally scarring mistakes!