Want to know the secret to throwing a GREAT Birthday Party? Don’t plan one…… Worked for me!
The past two birthdays, my youngest daughter Emily has had a small party with friends, but very few of those invited ever showed up. My youngest son (3rd child of 4) hasn’t really ever had a birthday party. We tried a couple of times, but his birthday is 4 days before Christmas, and that is a hard time of year to try and get guests to come. We always say we are going to throw him a party the month before, or the month after, but so far…. it hasn’t happened. My husband and I had both agreed that until Spencer had a turn at having a big party, we would not throw any more parties for the other children. We told Emily in advance that for her birthday we would celebrate together as a family, just like we did on Spencer’s birthday… we explicitly explained we would not be having a “party”.
SHE had other plans……
The morning of Emily’s birthday I woke with a migraine….. I was determined to try to get rid of it before the kids got home, I did not want her birthday spoiled by my headache. I took some medicine, went to my room, blocked all the light I could, and crawled under the covers and went to sleep. Emily’s birthday fell on a Monday, and I really needed to get some cleaning done from the weekend, but I didn’t wake until late that afternoon. My headache was still there, but better. It was so late in the day, I didn’t have time to clean or even take a shower before time for Greg to be home. But…..we weren’t going anywhere, we were going to just stay home to celebrate, no one was coming over, and I didn’t feel good, so I didn’t worry about it. I threw on some clothes and made my way downstairs to start preparing lunch. After lunch Greg went to bed, and I took it easy for the next hour as I waited for the kids to get home.
When the bus arrived, and Emily came inside she had a friend with her that lives in our neighborhood. She said that “R” wanted to know if she could have some cake and ice-cream with us……. O.K.
Greg, upstairs sleeping, woke when he heard the kids come in, so came down in nothing but sleep pants to wish Emily Happy Birthday, and to set up his FLIP Camera to record her opening her gifts and blowing out the candle. As he began to set up the camera, the kids made their way to the table. I heard “R” state that she was the first one to arrive at the Party. Wait a minute….wait a minute…..the first to arrive? I reminded Emily that this year we were not having a party, she nodded her understanding….
At this point the Camera was set up and recording. Greg told her to go ahead and open her gifts. As she tore into the first present…..
KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK………… more guests had arrived.
Panicking now….. I asked Emily how many people she had invited? Her friend “R” stated matter of factly, “Lots of People”. Greg, half naked, except for his sleeping pants, said he was going to bed, and practically raced up the stairs. On his way, he glanced out the front window, and hollared….”Teri! The whole neighborhood is at our front door!!”
So I…..having had NO shower, having NO makeup, Hair NOT brushed or even made an ATTEMPT made to tame it, wearing YESTERDAY’s dirty clothes (and THANK GOODNESS, a Bra) …. made my way through my DIRTY house to the front door….
Emily had invited all the neighborhood kids over to her “party” for cake and ice-cream….. and they all came, including one parent. Had I planned for a party, we would not have had as many guests as we did for Emily’s “Reverse Surprise Party” she threw…..
I just barely, by the scrape of my teeth, had enough cake and ice-cream to go around.