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Low-Key Kid Birthday Parties

Is It Time to Reel In the Birthday Party Craziness?

Here's a post from our partners at BabyCenter! Every week, we bring you the best parenting and lifestyle stories from the experts at BabyCenter, including this post from Erin Lane about throwing a low-key birthday party.

My son turns four in December. Last year, when I stared at the chocolate cake stamped into my carpet, wondering if my hearing would ever return, I swore next birthday we wouldn't have the party at my house. Oh yes, we were going somewhere.

But here we are, five weeks out, and I'm questioning myself. I've gone over it and over it in my head. Majority of the places I've called will allow around 20 children. I made a list and can't come up with more than 12 kids in my head. The cheapest option out there? $200. $200 y'all!

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I've been debating buying him a LeapPad for his birthday but finally decided no based on the price. Yet, I thought nothing of spending that much money on a party he'll barely remember, when he'd have just as much fun with just a few friends or heck, just family? Sheesh, what am I doing?

I'm not sure why I feel he needs a big party. He doesn't. He's going to be four, for Pete's sake. He's content playing with two or three friends. Twenty friends? He'd barely know who all was there. Then you have to think about parents and siblings and food. It's overwhelming. Is it other parents/ past parties that make me feel this way? I’m don't know, but I think I've finally come to my senses.

We're going to have a birthday play date at our house the Friday morning before his birthday with a few friends from school. I'll get Donut Holes and they can run around and play. Then on Saturday, we'll have a nice (read: small) party with the family. The family party will have the Spider Man cake that he's so desperate to have. He'll be happy and I'll be happy.

I'll worry about bigger parties when he gets a bit older. Or maybe I won't and we'll just have him invite one or two friends over for dinner.

What do you think? What do you do for your kid's birthday parties?

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