Who's the party for, when they're still under four? ~ My IdeaLife

Wednesday 18 May 2011

Who's the party for, when they're still under four?

Nothing new to see here as am feeling guilty again *boring*. This time it's in addition to the usual suspects:
- telling off husband in front of the boys (swear words may or may not have been involved)
- ignoring not one but two whinging children for 20mins who had both awoken early from their afternoon naps
- rushing bedtime so I can sit down and relax

The list goes on but I'd rather you didn't lose the will to live, so the reason I'm feeling guilty today because I saw a photo of my boy looking at the party happening in front of him with a frown.

This was meant to be my birthday boy, at his party - enjoying himself. Doesn't look like it does it? Between rushing around getting people drinks and catching up I noticed that he was surveying the relatively 'out-of-control' scene a lot of the time rather than joining in. I wondered what he was thinking. A few things came to my guilty mind like, ‘Who are half these kids fighting over my toys?’ or ‘Why aren’t Marlowe or Helena from kindy here?’

It’s hard to admit but when I look back on this party there were only a few things that were really for him, namely the cake, that he adored (see below), the balloons, which you may have already heard about and the presents, which he is still enjoying. The rest was for adults, two in particular: his parents. It was a chance for us to catch up with friends, utilise our newly renovated backyard, and let our hair down, well as much as you can with two very little humans to sustain.

It made me rethink the whole party thing prior to the fourth birthday, and I was all ready to try this scrooge-like approach out on our second bub who’s not yet one. Then my hubby said "what about the photos? he’ll look back and say ‘Why didn’t you have any parties for me like you did for my brother?’” So in the spirit of equality I may have to have another fun adult event for a little person who may or may not enjoy it and will definitely not remember it. If I had my time again I think I’d probably alternate years and skip the two-year birthday. Or would I? He did love that cake and his smile was unmistakable when everyone sang him Happy Birthday...mmmnnnnnn.

What do you think? Are there better ways to celebrate when they’re under four?
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© My IdeaLife 2011, All rights reserved


  1. I guess it's all about the acknowledgment, celebration, and hoping that some part of the event was embedded into his memory...so he can look back and say he did have a "happy" childhood and that mommy and daddy loved him...

  2. Hi Rachel - yes that's a good point and as I said there were definitely parts he LOVED so my guilt is probably a little misguided...

  3. Don't feel guilty. You're a great mom, and this is only one picture. I'm sure there are plenty other pictures with your little man smiling from ear to ear. Parties are rough on kids because they get overstimulated and tired. But they still love them! Especially when it's for them!


  4. Ah, perhaps you have an 'observer' on your hands & he enjoys watching all that is going on around him! I know what you mean about the parties though! I always make sure that we celebrate the our girls birthdays on their actual birthdate by having a day out doing something they like(zoo, beach, etc). And every year(Piper, my eldest will be 5 this year)I question my sanity when we have one! Natasha xx ps thanks for following my blog! :)

  5. Thanks Roseann & Natasha,
    I think I do have an 'observer' so will try not to feel guilty and you're right there were other photos where he was very chuffed. Must not feel guilty for no good reason!

    Nicole x

  6. Hey there. Dropping by from my blog that you checked out. I agree so much on the party thing!!! I have a 7, 10 and 11 year old, and I have had to say...enough is enough:)

  7. Thanks for your comment Rebecca - did you throw parties every year for every child or did you put another system in place? ('system' doesn't seem like the right word but you know what I mean I hope!) I'm thinking every second year until five or four and then I suppose peer pressure kicks in?


  8. Hi! Found you off VB! Your husband's comment was EXACTLY why we made sure to have a baby shower for all 3 of our boys- we didn't want the questions years later when they saw pics. I've nominated you for the Stylish Blogger award. Check out more info at http://confessionsfromboystown.blogspot.com/2011/05/stylish-blogger-award.html
    I can't wait to read more of your stuff- I'm following you now, btw.
    Talk to you soon!

  9. Hi Amber - yes as much as it pains me to say it my hubby is right (heehehe) so will have to do a 1st and 2nd party for the new little one too. Thank you very much for the lovely compliments and the nomination! wow! am off to check out your site now,



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