What Happened to Simple Birthdays?

It’s birthday party time at our house.

Hopes and expectations are running high with big dreams being shared about what the party will be like. Guest lists are written and changed, as is the coveted gift. Oh, to be a kid and have all the excitement of a birthday to look forward to!

Yet, I’ve noticed that over the last few years parties have been anything but…fun.

Does it seem to anyone else like the kid party scene has gotten completely out of control?

  • First, we have to find the perfect venue to house all the guests (there went my whole budget for the party)!
  • Next, we have to have a theme that includes all the party decorations, food, and activities.
  • Third, we need to find the perfect party guests’ trinkets (read JUNK) so each kid will have something to take home.
  • Then, there is the guest list. We must invite every kid in the grade because we know it’s rude to leave someone out but also because we never know if anyone will even show up. We make an RSVP list but even that doesn’t ensure that on the day of the event, others will simply not come.
  • We purchase the food, spend lots of time, effort, and money stressing your family out as you rush to make this perfect for your child.
  • Oh, and don’t forget we need to buy the perfect gift. It needs to be something all the kids are getting. You wouldn’t want your child to be embarrassed in front of their friends, would you?

Where did all these standards come from? Social Media? Peer Pressure?

Moms, we are not doing ourselves or our children any favors by stressing about over-the-top birthday parties. By the end of the day, we are frazzled, our kids are on a sugar high, and so many friends can sometimes lead to kid (and even parent) drama.

Whatever happened to simple birthday parties?

Some of my favorite childhood memories are of my birthday parties that my mom threw for me. I did not have one every year, I knew not to expect that. Instead, when I did have a party, it was special. My mom fashioned homemade party games, baked me a cake, and wrapped a few simple gifts. I was allowed to invite 3-4 friends, just the right amount to really spend time with each of the kids. Life was simple and I was not missing out.

I wish as parents we could remember that fun often comes in simplicity. We should offer that to our own children and allow them to reap the same benefits that we did as kids. I believe we need to teach contentment and help our children find true joy. Those are things we will never regret giving to our children.

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Hi, I'm Courtney! Born and raised in Oklahoma, I have birthed 9 babies who have given me 7 grandbabies--so far. I am a slightly crunchy, homeschooling mama of 28 years. In 2020, I also became a grieving mama as my 3 year old lost her battle to Neuroblastoma, a childhood cancer. I currently write about our everyday life, child loss, grief, and Jesus at https://www.facebook.com/MilliesMiracle2020. You can also find me at MilliesMiracle.net

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