My first-born, my girl, is about to turn two, or is probably just turned two by time this actually publishes. After her first birthday party I swore I wouldn’t have another one until she was old enough to ask for herself.
I know this all sounds a little harsh but let me explain. On her first birthday party last year, we had a party for her in our garden. We invited family, friends and her little one year old friends whose mothers I met through various ante natal and baby groups. We made a big deal out of it, brought loads of food, got the BBQ going and had a lot of people over. See it wasn’t just her first birthday it was mine. She was my first-born and it my first child was turning one. It felt like an occasion to be marked.
However, and it’s a biggy, 4 weeks earlier I had just given birth to our so. He was still in the neo natal unit at this point as he was some two months early. I felt torn between a rock and very very hard place. I wanted and needed to be at home with my daughter celebrating her first birthday (it wasn’t her actual birthday though) but I also wanted to be with my tiny poorly baby who was stuck in his plastic incubator with only hospital staff for company. Thinking about it now still makes me well up.
I spent the morning getting everything ready for the party, the hospital is an hours round trip so I couldn’t to get there and back in time before kick off. The party came and I spent the entire time, trying to feed and water my many guests, stressed about getting food out, whether the babies were having fun (they were one year olds, they had no idea what was going on), I had to disappear to express milk every three hours, which fell slap bang in the middle of the party. I had to weirdly excuse myself to go milk the cow. I hardly spent much time with my daughter, who incidentally was in a vile mood all day, I handed out cake and party bags and by the end of it had several pissed adults and a few of my friends who had come to visit from my home town who were helping me furiously pack away.
It was getting on for 5/6 o’clock and I couldn’t deal with it anymore. I had not got to my boy and no one seemed to notice. So I did what any self respecting post partum, tired, hormonal mother would do and started crying. I was swiftly booted out the door and sent to the hospital to sit with boy who had been on his own all day. Thank god I got to see him, I couldn’t bear the thought of a day passing where his mum wasn’t there for him.
So all in all the day was very stressful, I was tired, emotional and not long out of the delivery suite. I shouldn’t forget to mention it rained and were constantly diving in and out of the house for shelter, bringing all the food with us.
So when the time came for the second birthday party I just wasn’t going to do it. Until this happened.
Yes, once again we opened our garden to a flurry of now two year olds and friends and family. Got the Barbie going and dished out the food and drinks.
I swore I wouldn’t get worked up over making this one perfect, it will be what it will be. Part of lightening the load came in the form of a pre packed bundle, of table covers, cups, plates and party bags. Boy did it make life easier having party bags delivered to your door. No roaming the shops for little toys, sweets and whatever your supposed to give the little ones or looking for matching sets of plates and cups and covers. I opted for a Peppa pig theme. As much as I had some swanky stylish pastel colour theme in mind I realised it is a two-year olds party and my two-year happens to rather like Peppa pig. Turns out every two-year old likes Peppa pig, even the plates were a hit who would have thought it.
Inside the party bags, was a noise shaker, a marshmallow, a little toy, a voucher for mums and dads should they wish to use the same company (who don’t just stock for children’s parties, but have a wide range of decorations, balloons, party bags, and party paraphernalia for all ages) and the piece de resistance – stickers. The kids all loved the Peppa pig stickers.
We also hired some air flows from a local company to fill the garden, borrowed some toys from a friend and of course put our collection out for everyone to play with. Fortunately the weather held out, until about 3 hours in when it did start to rain and everyone swiftly departed, with party bag!
I stressed a little about the food and drink but didn’t let it take over my day. I tried to get round to all my guests but think I fell short on this one too. I didn’t spend as much time with kids as I would like but the biggest difference was they were both there. My daughter absolutely loved the toys and company, she really had a great day and that certainly made it all worth while. But. Would I do it again? No. But I said that last year
We were kindly sent the party bag, cover, plates and cups bundle from partybagsandsupplies.co.uk, however all opinions are of course my own.