I mean, not really. The kids all loved it after all. And no adults actually threw themselves off the deck, even if they all thought about it at one point or another
Now, to bring you up to speed on birthday parties: I no longer go overboard on the planning. For Rocco’s 9th, he wanted old fashioned party games, and I made zero decorations for it. Zero! I planned it for a non-meal time to make it easier. I did not invite the entire city and their Great Aunt Ethels; just a handful of Rocco’s friends.
I was smart about the party, too. Knowing we’d have a dozen boys in our house I hid all the Nerf swords/battle axes, plus all the ammo to the Nerf guns. I set up a quiet spaghetti-marshmallow building activity to settle the kids in when they arrived. I remember feeling proud in thinking of those details.
Within minutes of arriving, the dozen boys had turned our fort building poles into swords and battle axes, had found the one gun that had a bullet left in it, and had turned the dry spaghetti-marshmallow building activity into an all-you-can-eat dry spaghetti and marshmallow bar. When they had eaten all they could, they experimented with throwing dry spaghetti and marshmallows around the living room.
Unfortunately, the pictures of this post lie. The pictures were taken during moments I was not defending myself or my house from marshmallow damage, which I don’t think is covered by insurance.
From there, the party lost all control and jumped the track. At one point as we chased after a screaming herd of boys, my sister yelled, “You’re a teacher! Where did your skills go?” I looked at her helplessly. It seemed this group of kids was far beyond, “1, 2, 3, eyes on me!”
It’s not that they didn’t like the things we had planned. It’s that they liked them too much.
The game of Don’t Eat Steve turned into a game of How Many Skittles Can You Sneak from the Bag when Rachel Isn’t Looking. When I got smarter about the bag, it turned into a game of Begging and Whining for More Skittles.
Pin the Tail on the Donkey turned into How Much Can You Harass the Blindfolded Kid Without Him Noticing. A spin-off version emerged called Let’s All Pretend We’re the Donkey.
The main event of the party was a scavenger hunt that sent the boys all through the house, finding clues hidden on party blowers or on stuffed animals wearing party hats or on helium balloons that would fly out of toy boxes when opened. It was like Oprah’s “Favorite Things” episode only if she had invited a pack of rabid dogs to attend. The prize at the end of the hunt was a water fight. I had imagined the boys squealing with delight as they soaked each other while I congratulated myself from a safe distance away. Instead, they all grabbed water guns and balloons and then someone yelled, “GET HER!” and I found myself pelted and sprayed and dumped on by a dozen crazy-eyed third grade boys. Me! The one who gave them the water fight.
There are no pictures to document the abuse I took, and be thankful for that. It is the stuff nightmares are made of.
It looks so innocent from this picture. I assure you, it was NOT. Oh well. At least one of the adults was safe and dry on the deck, taking pictures.
Remember the last birthday party I blogged about? The one at Chuck E. Cheese? The one I considered the lowest level a party could stoop to?
From now on, all our parties are going to be at Chuck E. Cheese. I stand in awe at the feet of Chuck E. and utter a thousand apologies and praises.
Pah. Third graders.
WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Black bean burgers with a side of 8 extra pizzas Kevin ordered for the party (I need to stop letting him place the orders)
Day old sushi
Fresh fruits & veggies
Leftover strawberry, blueberry, raspberry cake