Sunday, May 17, 2009


The kids brought it up again. As much as they know I hate the subject, they had to ask.

"Mom, can I have a birthday party this year?"

I sighed. I am not exactly talented in party-planning. I would prefer to pay each kid the amount it would cost to host a party and call it good.

However, there are the rare moments when my mind can surprise me with its pure genius. Moments like today.

I started out by answering Thumbelina's birthday party inquiry with another question. "How old are you going to be this year? Thirteen? Unlucky number thirteen? Who celebrates that number? No one, that's who."

And then the idea began to form. It was like magic.

"Actually, Thumbelina, I think you totally should have a party!" I exclaimed with excitement.

"Really?" she questioned skeptically.

"Definitely! It can be a 'Series of Unfortunate Events Party'. You know, because you'll be unlucky number thirteen?"

Thumbelina likes this series of books, so her interest was piqued. "Okay..."

"Yeah! We can send out invitations and everything. You can even invite thirteen friends! And on the day and time that they arrive, we can have a sign on the door in a fancy 'Series of Unfortunate Events' font! It will say:

Due to a series of unfortunate events,
today's party has been canceled.
Please leave your gifts at the door
and attempt to make your way home.

What do you think?" I asked, really, really super excited for the first time in my life about throwing a birthday party.

She just rolled her eyes.



Maleen said...

That is the BEST party I have ever heard of!

It makes planning a snap. You could even go the extra mile and leave little party favors like change purses with holes in the bottom or coupons that have expired.

Mom not Mum said...

That is MY kind of party. Love it! Hahaha.

Anonymous said...

That's hysterical. You make me jealous--so creative. Here are a couple of links with some ideas: and .
We did a camp-out bday party for Lawson this past Sept and it was a blast--wienie roast, smores, tents, the whole shebang. Pretty cheap, too.


Amy said...

Okay, Gerb, I am soooo with you on this one. I love your response! Perfect!

Anaise said...

Oh man! I so don't do birthday parties for my kids--I think it is because we are our own party--like your family! We celebrate at home with cake and decorations and presents, but there's something about hosting a gazillion neighborhood and church friends into organized chaos for the sole purpose of acquiring presents (that I won't approve of anyway) that I find impossible to cope with. We have OTHER parties--just not birthday ones.

I wonder if my kids will be scarred for life?

(The negative side of this is that today is my birthday, and I still haven't come up with a way to celebrate that will satisfy my family!)

Gerb said...

Maleen- Thanks! I guess the eye-roll meant something like, "Mom, you are such a dork", though. I like the coupons that have expired idea... you and I could go into business! Party Planning for Teens! What do you think?

MnM- I honestly think it would be fun to do and videotape the kids reactions as they arrive. That could keep me smiling for months!

L- Lawson's party sounds like a great idea. Thanks for the links, too! I am trying to decide on what to do for my turning-16-year-old son's bday next month. I think he'd be happy with a few friends and lots of pizza.

Amy- I was amazed by my own mind. I couldn't believe she didn't jump all over the idea!

Anaise- I am completely with you on this. We celebrate as a family as well - and that's no small number of people! My kids have had maybe 3 friend parties apiece so far. Actually, the youngest 5 have never had a friend party yet... although Cowgirl (age 8) is finally on to me and has started asking for one next year.

If your kids are scarred, they can be roommates with my kids someday and they can be scarred together. ;)

Sister Pottymouth said...

AWESOME! I hate doing birthday parties, so I don't do them. Sadly, the only three I've ever done were for Atticus. Two of them were only because he really, really wanted them and offered to help pay for part of the cost. Sweet Boy and Mr. Wiggle Brows will just have to feel deprived.

Teachinfourth said...

In a word: Brilliant!

Becky said...

Clever one Gerb.....You know me.....I LOVE BIRTHDAY PARTIES!!!!!!!!! Although, Ask me again at the end of August after I've had a party in June, July and August for 3 of my kids who have birthdays way to close together! I just might go crazy this summer planning a Cowboy, Build-A-Bear and ZOO party!!! At least I'm keeping Kodak in business, right?

annette said...

Geez Loueez- I'm with Thumbelina on this one. I adore my family, but I love to get together with my friends. I figure my kids do too. So I don't stress, I let the kids plan it (with boundaries of course). I did this with Wiz Kid's recent B-day and he came up with a prize store- divying up the "cash" and letting his friends "buy" what they wanted. He had 2 drawings for "$50", and in addition to wii/ds games, he played one he called, "Guess what you are eating". A taste test of sorts. It was fun.

Still, you forgot to mention that although you don't "do" parties, you do spoil your kids on their birthdays- take them out, let them choose, special dinner, etc. I've heard about it :)