Monday, March 2, 2009
Post-Traumatic Birthday Party Stress: Lessons Learned
1) Do Not Print Extra Party Invites
Or you will have extra party guests.
2) Do Not Assign the Distribution of Said Invites to your Six-Year-Old Daughter
Some invitations will never make it home to the prospective guests' parents. Which will necessitate a second round of invitations, corroborations and desperate pleas, by phone, e-mail and fax.
3) Do Not Invite Too Many Kids
Ten is too many. Unless they bring their mommies. And/or parole officers.
4) Boys are Different from Girls
They hit each other. They dogpile each other. They start pillow fights and will not stop until you take away all the pillows. Boys will push all of your buttons quicker and much more overtly. Do not strangle them.
5) Use Television as a Weapon, if Necessary
When the "playing" begins to resemble a scene from The Lord of the Flies, turn on the boob tube. They will mollify.
6) Arts and Crafts Activities Provide a Focus and Help Prevent Bloodshed
Maybe the Crips and Bloods should try making masks out of paper and string. Sort some things out.
7) Amidst the Chaos, Hug any Child who Asks for a Hug, No Questions Asked
8) Do Not Invite the Little Friends of the Little Sister of the Birthday Girl, just to be Considerate to the Little Sister
Plan a separate activity for them, off-site. Otherwise, you're throwing two parties in the same apartment.
9) Do Not Fly Solo
Make sure other adults are present. As eyewitnesses. Consider a ratio of one grown-up for every three ankle-biters.
10) Arrange for your Putzfrau to come the Day After