My wife came home the other day after picking our kids up from school and she walked in the front door with a flabbergasted look on her face. Dropping all of their bags and lunchboxes on the floor, she held up a handful of envelopes. Looking at me she said, “You have got to be kidding me….four more!”
Horrified, I smashed my face into the pillows on the couch and screamed “NO NO NO!”
Four more birthday invitations from the kids at school. Dear GAWD no!
A couple of days prior our son came home with 3 other invites, and last month we had to go to 2 birthday parties. Add all of these wonderful party passes up and our weekends are suddenly being consumed with shindigs for goofy classmates that we’ve never even heard of. Parents, are you reading this nodding your heads because you’re experiencing the same frustration? The constant flow of colorful card stock inviting excited peers and annoyed parents to an afternoon of luke-warm pizza, and cupcakes with excessive frosting.
The invites that are surprising me the most are the ones that are coming from our daughter's pre-school friends. Tiny little 3 and 4 years olds pining for attention at their Frozen themed festivities - and yes they’re ALL Frozen themed. All of them.
We’ve definitely noticed that birthday invites are starting to trend younger and younger. My guess is not at the request of the little pip-squeaks either, but rather Pinterest parents competing to outdo each other in the world of competitive celebrations. Gone are the days of waiting until your child is pencils deep into elementary school before group birthday parties start - nowadays parents get bombarded by bombastic bashes for little blobs that still poo their pants. Talk about excessive frosting.
And let’s talk cost - start adding up gifts for these sweet little angel children. Twenty bucks a pop seems to be the going rate for a gift (more if you want to look like the top parent at the party). Add that up over our kids 2 classes and you get roughly 35 gifts that we have to supply (be boo bop boo - math) you’re looking at $700 bucks a year to bestow presents to kids that your child probably doesn’t even like!
My buddy Dom from the radio show came up with a GREAT suggestion on how to alleviate some of the stress and headaches of having to go to so many of these delightful events. I’m totally on board with his recommendation, how about creating 2 massive birthday celebrations that encompass all of the students at once? One for spring and summer birthdays and then one later in the year for fall and winter babies. How great is that idea!? You’re able to knock out a huge chunk of kids all at once - then you’re only ruining two Saturdays a year instead of a couple months worth. And the presents? Either cancel the gifts altogether or maybe adopt this “fiver party” idea that I’ve seen some news outlets covering. In lieu of material gifts, guests can bring five dollar bills to give to the birthday boy/girl. The child can then take their haul from the 10 kids they invited to their party and buy a $50 gift of their choosing - or save the money! The kids learn a little money management and there is far less stress on the gift giver and a whole lot less money spent on these joyous celebrations. You dig it?
Support my partners - coffee brewed RIGHT here in Sedalia, Colorado. Order some - it’s the only coffee in my pot!