In five weeks, we’ll celebrate my baby’s first birthday. Just how we will celebrate it has been weighing on me lately. How big should a first birthday party be?
I’m for small birthdays on principle. I don’t want to set an impossible standard of gift-giving, for one thing. And I don’t ever, ever, ever want to spend an afternoon supervising a group of small people in Chuck E. Cheese’s. I realize it’s probably an inescapable fate, but I’m going to try really hard.
But this kid is loved, and we want to celebrate her. It’s just a matter of figuring out how best to do that.
We attended a lovely first birthday party last month that I thought was very well done. It was a gathering of family and friends at home with barbeque and birthday cake. The birthday boy’s parents said “no gifts” and were totally disregarded.
Our house isn’t really big enough to hold even just close family and friends comfortably, so that puts me in a position to figure out somewhere else to have it. My parents’ house? A park? A rented room somewhere? You see how quickly this kind of thing can ramp up.
And what about food? Am I feeding adults, or are we just having cake and ice cream? I mean, whose party is this? I think that’s a serious question because the baby isn’t going to have a much of an idea of what’s happening, so that kind of makes it my party, right?
Clearly I have been over thinking this. But friends have been asking me for months now if I’ve started planning her first birthday party yet, so I’ve had time to obsess. And I see lots of blog postings about birthday parties. Ohdeedoh has a whole series on kids’ parties with themes and decorations and favors that put my best aspirations to shame. This post on Unclutterer is closer to how I feel about kids’ birthdays.
So far, I plan to have a round, layered yellow cake with chocolate icing and sprinkles, and I’ll cut a slice for her to “smash.” Because I really like yellow cake with chocolate icing and sprinkles, and I can easily make this myself for very little money. I kind of don’t get the smash cake thing. I don’t judge it, I just don’t get it. (Other things I don’t get: tattoos, garter tosses). I plan to decorate with balloons, and possibly make a balloon banner. I’ll use Paperless Post for invitations (I like this one). Still haven’t decided about food and location. I’m starting to think our house is the best place even if it isn’t quite big enough.
So tell me, moms, what do you think about first birthday parties, and birthday parties in general? Am I being too austere?