Thursday, June 19, 2014

Birthday Party Politics, Part 2

For her seventh birthday, the kiddo decided that she wanted her party at Chuck E Cheese's. This decision was not made lightly. No, she decided that months in advance, and every time I asked her, hoping she had changed her mind, she adamantly repeated it.

For the last two years, hubby and I had been saying that the guest list was getting too big and that we had to pare it down. I had some considerations on the matter:

First, Chuck E Cheese's isn't cheap. How much money did we want to spend? How much money did we need to spend to give the kiddo a fantastic birthday party?

Second, having been to other parties at Chuck E Cheese's, I knew that, due to the noise and chaos, it would be hard for the kiddo to interact with a ton of her friends. A small group would be better.

Third, she would be having a bunch of birthday treats--taking goodies to school, dinner at her favorite restaurant with a special friend, a trip to Build-A-Bear, and a celebration with the grandparents. 

So, after careful determination, we scaled back the guest list. Out were the nose-picker and the whiner. The kid whose mom who was gradually excluding us from her events? Out. The one who always invites the kiddo but whom the kiddo never once mentioned for her own guest list? Gulp--sorry, but out. The school BFFs? In! The girls who the kiddo doesn't see regularly but always asks for? In! The core group of buddies? In, in, in!

All that was left was my own guilt. The mom who had done me a favor was expecting an invitation for her child. Oh, well. The mom and her kid whom we see in passing regularly might have liked one. Sorry. This is my kiddo's party we're talking about. It should be what she wants. It really should just be family and friends and cake and ice cream. We need to leave the politics out. 

Favor-Doing-Mom: I am happy to reciprocate and help you out of a jam, but there is a more appropriate way of doing so than letting you crash our party. Mom-In-Passing: we like you and your kid. We really do. We would like to get to know you better. If we do, you might be invited to a future party.

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