Month: October 2017

Happy Birthday!

Growing up I do not really remember going to a lot of birthday parties.  What parties I do remember were mostly family events and vague memories of childhood friends family parties that we were invited to.  I am not sure if this was just the era we grew up in or if my small group of friends, like my family, did not do parties like I am experiencing with my kids.

Even before having kids of my own, I worked for a company who provided entertainment for kids birthday parties.  This was more than I was used to but most of the parties I worked or observed were in home parties and the 60 min of entertainment was a nice break for the parents.   Still not what I was used to growing up.

Now that my son is 5 and invited to more and more birthday parties, he is starting to ask and plan for his party in March! To date we have always done family parties and the last two years inviting some friends to meet us somewhere like Chuckie Cheese to play and have cake.  I am beginning to think he feels left out after attending parties at Bounce U, Sky Zone, My little Gym, Science Seeds  and one tomorrow at iPlay America that have 20+ children there.

With our life right now, this has not really been an option.  The cost of these parties are easily a weeks worth of pay if not more.  I was originally thinking a small gathering at our home for his next party.  He will be 6 so he gets to invite 6 friends, not including family.  If the weather is nice they can play outside if not its a small enough number that the basement can handle it!  I know enough tricks from preforming at parties to give it some entertainment and the cost down.  It worked great when he wanted a costume party.  Now he is begging for a Bounce U party where he can invite his entire class.

I am not sure if that is in the cards for us, but with several more months to plan we may be able to compromise.  I am hoping with some diligent planning and budgeting we can work out a deal with the location, All Heart Academy, where our son takes Ninja Warrior course training.  They have a birthday package that includes a free month for the birthday child, if we can apply that to the party it should be doable.  Not exactly what he wants but I think a good compromise of being able to invite his class mates and friends while keeping it simple.  I hope!

Right now I am thankful our daughter has not experienced the party invite craze yet and we can still get away with cake at home . . . not to plan a Let it go/Elsa and triceratops themed day for her third birthday in December!

RSVP

Recently I hosted an open house .  Very informal but invitations were still sent via social media and text.  I had eight people say they were coming, one who was unsure and a LOT of no responses.  A few people shared their regrets, even last minute.  Hey, I understand, life happens.  For this type of invite  a  nice sorry cant make it maybe next time works!

I have always said I am a no pressure person, and I mean it.  Really believe the art of just spending time with friends is lost on my generation and younger and would love to bring that art back!  Technology has made it easier for people to keep in touch and see the experiences others are having but the more I observe, the more it seems these experiences are lacking friends, they are more insular.

Why do I bring this up?  Out of the EIGHT people who said yes, two cancelled last minute (one of those had a legit family emergency) and the other 6 where straight out no shows.  People I spoke with during the week about the event, even some that day, and not once did they say “Oh hope it is awesome unfortunately I cant make it. ”

According to the Spruce, “The term RSVP comes from the French expression “répondez s’il vous plaît”, meaning “please respond.” If RSVP is written on an invitation it means the invited guest must tell the host whether or not they plan to attend the party.

RSVP does not mean to respond only if you’re coming, and it does not mean respond only if you’re not coming (the expression “regrets only” is reserved for that instance). This means the host needs a definite head count for the planned event and needs it by the date specified on the invitation.”

In addition, “It is bad form to cancel an RSVP unless you have a very good reason, limited in general to illness or a death in your family. The host will already have made plans based on your attendance.”

Maybe I am old fashioned, but this is how I always felt about RSVPs.  I would not say I am coming unless I know I will be able to attend.  Even if the day of the event there is something else I would rather do, including letting my introvert side rule, I go because I said I would be there.  For me this is more a show of respect for the host and my friend who thought enough to invite me then it is about me.  They went through the time to organize, clean, prepare or buy food based on those coming.  How would you feel if you planned an event , had friends who said they would be there and they never showed? That is why I go.