My kids love parties, I think all children do. It can often be seen as a bit of nightmare to have to sit and wait for a couple of hours as they have their fun. We also have to come up with a present for the birthday boy or girl and spend awkward silences sat next to other parents, who are usually on their phone but I don’t have a problem with any of that.
What I do have a problem is when people say they are going to come, then don’t.
We recently had a party for my eldest. We hired the leisure centre who provided a hall with bouncy castle, football goals and speaker for me to plug my phone into for music. After an hour of bouncing around, we then went to a smaller room which we had set tables and chairs out with food and drink, before having the Happy Birthday rendition and then seeing the rest of the second hour out with some party games.
I don’t mind blowing up balloons, sticking banners to walls and getting there earlier to lug tables and chairs around. Again, I have a problem when people cancel on you, for no real reason.
There have been countless news articles and Facebook posts about parents invoicing those who say they are coming, but don’t attend. I’d never go that far. I understand if there is an emergency, or if it is a genuine mistake – a friend of ours had a party on the Saturday with one child and one on the Sunday with the other child, they drove on the Saturday to the one which should have been Sunday and as it was quite a distance away, couldn’t get back in time to rectify their mistake – I think that is fine and an acceptable excuse.
However getting a text on the morning of the party saying “so-and-so can’t come today because we have family coming round which wasn’t planned”, is a poor excuse.
What you did have planned in was a party, which you said you would attend.
Can you imagine if half the people who said they were going to come cancelled that morning? Not only have we spent money hiring the venue, buying party bags and sorting things out, think of the little boy who’s birthday celebration it is. If you have no interest in going, or you’re willing to drop your invite and change your plans, don’t RSVP saying yes.
In the end, we had a great time and I know the kids had fun.
There will be one less invite sent out next year.