I'm finding that it's hard to plan anything truly special for my daughter's birthday. I don't necessarily do a whole lot better with her brother, but as soon as his birthday's over, it's already too late to start thinking about hers from scratch. So, it was several days after Smunch's birthday that I sat down with Mam to talk about a guest list.
I don't know where this child came from. I really don't. She isn't a thing like her mother. I can tell you that. I always had a few really good friends and some peripheral friends, but I wasn't friends with everyone. Mam, is friends with just about everyone. There are some notable exceptions, but there are 24 kids in her class. Even if she's not fond of a quarter of them, that's still 18 children to invite. In the end, she invited 17, including a kindergartner from down the street, a friend who goes to another school and two girls who aren't in her class this year...in addition to a full half of her first grade class.
I made a snap decision that if we had to have that many children at our house, they were going to watch a movie. I chose "A Bug's Life". Despite the ladybug in the movie being a rather surly male, I figured it was probably as close to "on theme" as I was going to get.
The kids started arriving at 4:30. By five, they were sitting down creating their own mini-pizzas out of English muffins and all the fixins I could come up with. Pizzas were flying into the oven and flying right back out.It was complete chaos. Kids were loud, kids were crazy, some kids were grumpy. Prodded by her current "boyfriend", Mam announced it was too loud. I suggested she rethink inviting so many kids next time.
Once kids started finishing their dinner, we sent them off to play Twister in the family room with Daddy.With 15 kids, it was still crazy. Not too many kids can play Twister at once.
Mercifully, we started the movie as soon as 5:30 rolled around. And a beautiful silence filled the air as 15 children became complete zombies in front of the TV. Of course, there was plenty of giggling, but relatively speaking, it was so under control!When the peace was finally over, at least there was cake to keep them occupied.Naturally, half of them complained about either the fondant or the strawberry filling. Cake never occupies kids for as long as you'd hope. We ended up having Mam open her presents...something children rarely do at birthday parties anymore.
When that was over, they all went HOME. And that was the best part of all! That and the next morning...Mam's actual birthday...when she got her brand new bike, which she already loves.Funny to think there was a time when I was near certain that she'd never be able to ride a bike...much less have a crazy birthday party.