Monday, October 29, 2007

No Presents Parties

I just read this:

I'm curious to hear other people's take on it. We have been invited to some kids parties with this request and we too brought a gift. I believe my choice at the first was art supplies (coloring books & pens or crayons). I too felt weird not bringing anything, but figured the mom was in a similar boat as I in wanting and needing no more toys! I felt art supplies (w/a gift receipt so they could be returned if still too much) was a happy medium. I've also bought character PJs for similar requests; needed clothes that probably cost more then mom wants to pay for a pair of PJs, but not considered "boring clothes" by child because of the character on the PJs.

When reading this post my first thought was that maybe the mom could let the b-day boy keep a few favorites and send the rest to charity? Or maybe get rid of an equal number of existing toys that way. But part of me (the consumer in me who has been told that is mean) feels like that might be a bit heavy for a little kid. I mean life lessons are great, but does his b-day party have to be one too? I'm not sure how I feel about it. I'm totally guilty of both sides.

Next year I'm dodging the bullet as far as the big one is concerned; my plan for DD#1 is a "tea party". I'll let her invite 5-6 girlfriends and we'll go to a local tea room where the girls will receive a tea service catered toward kids, but served on real china & such. My SIL did this for my niece's 5th b-day & it was such a cool party. All the girls dressed up in their princess dresses & they loved the fact that they had real china, the sugar cubes were violets and that lunch/tea consisted of finger sandwiches (PB&J), mini rice crispy treats, a mini sundae & other varied sweets. They also hired "Cinderella" to come to the party and entertain the girls with face painting, an interactive story and such. The girls just about died. Yes, I want this party for me, but I think my older one will appreciate it just as much. DD#2 I'm not sure what I'll do. I'm all about the party; I love to plan a theme & decorate, be creative with my invites and the cake, things like that. But we too have more toys then I care to admit to, so a no presents party would be a nice change. What do you think? Any creative ideas on ways to circumvent the mom's (like me) who feel compelled to bring something anyway?