With less than a week to go until Evan's 4th birthday party, we are in panic level red in my household. Correction -- I am in full panic level -- I don't think my husband really cares and Evan expects everything to go swimmingly.
Why the stress/anxiety/panic over a 4-year-old's party, you may ask? Well, I suppose I wouldn't be in a tizzy if I had just invited the usual suspects (family and friends who have always been part of Evan's life). But now with Evan in preschool, that opened up a new wrinkle. Invite the whole class, even though he's only known these kids for a month? I was not ready for that. 18 kids in my cozy home? No thanks. So at the risk of raising eyebrows among the moms, I let Evan invite the three kids that he seems to hang with the most. (Don't worry, I didn't send the invites to the school, I don't know much, but I do know that's a no-no.)
So now I'm faced with having about 10 kids plus their parents in my house. What to do? It's really HOT outside. I don't have a pool. I've wrestled with the idea of a bounce house, just to keep them busy and get them all tuckered out. But that goes against my previous stance against out-of-control parties. Plus it's not really in my budget. Then again, I haven't completely ruled it out. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?
I emailed a magician to find out his prices. His website was promising. I thought the kids would find him hilarious. He promptly emailed me back. Forty-five minutes of his time would cost me $450. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
What to do? I'm sure they can entertain each other, right? And what about food? It's at 3 p.m. That's strategic on my part -- doesn't that mean I can get away with not serving a full meal? Or do people still expect to load up their plates? Can't I just do cake, chips and fruit?
I realize I need to relax. But this is new territory. What are those parents going to think of my lame little party? Do I care? I shouldn't. It only matters that Evan and the kids have a great time, right? Oh, and my resolve about goodie bags is melting as well. Why am I taking my angst about out-of-control parties out on the kids? Candy and favors are not going to break the bank. Bounce houses and magicians will.
Steer me to the Pin the Tail on the Donkey games at the party store, then give me a glass of wine, and I'll be fine.