Tuesday, May 24, 2016

To the parents at my son's party

Dear Parents,

Thanks for attending my son's party held just four weeks before we relocate from Virginia to Washington. Did it seem thrown together? That's because it was! My to-do list is revised every evening and it's overwhelming every morning. I credit my husband for having the wisdom to insist that we not have Kiefer's birthday party at home. That would have done me in for sure. I would have pulled it out and exhausted myself, but that energy needs to be spent elsewhere.

Thanks for not judging me when I wasn't even at my son's party! I was hit upside the head (figuratively, thankfully...though that blow might have hurt less) with a cocktail of bad cold and horrible allergies. I had such a bad headache that I could barely stand up straight. I'm not used to this sort of headache. Please feel free to laugh a little at and with me at the fact that I didn't realize until 2 PM--right smack in the middle of my son's party--that I hadn't had any coffee. So a big chunk of that head ache was preventable and self-induced. Like much in life, I guess. The good news is that after I had a strong cup of joe, most of that headache went away.

Thanks for throwing compliments to my husband when he stood up and stood in for me. He's an introvert and doesn't normally do these things, so I'm glad my absence gave him a chance to shine. And I'm proud of my kids who didn't freak out that their ubiquitous mom wasn't there.

Thanks, also, parents, for cutting me some slack on the cake. The birthday boy wanted chocolate cake with vanilla frosting, and I don't know how to manage that without the vanilla frosting having sprinkles of chocolate cake in it. I apologize for the fact that I only made one two-layer, 9-inch cake--only enough for the kids. But let's face it: Only one of you would have eaten the slice of cake had there been enough to pass around to adults. We party-throwers feel obligated to have enough for the grown-ups, but because moms are the ones who bring their kids to these events, few ever eat the pizza and cake designated for adults.

And I'm sorry for not having a gluten-free or peanut-free option, although I know at least two kids were in this category. I adore your sons but am still trying to figure out if it's my responsibility to provide allergy-free options for your sons. I wanted to go to the fancy cupcake place and get some, but...it didn't happen.

And I am really sorry about the goody bags. I wish we could collectively agree to strip this stupid habit (it's too new to be called I tradition) because none of us wants the candy or junk that is usually in them. I meant to bake cookie medals and tie ribbons around them so the party-goers could wear their medal out and munch on it on the way home (and get even more sugared up!). But then reality hit me: I would have to actually make them. So the birthday boy and his brother and I went to the Party Store and had a fine time finding some fun junk to throw into some goody bags. I know it'll end up in the trash. That's okay. That's where your son's goody bag ended up, too.

Thanks for all the stuff you got my son. You all are so generous! He's going to be doing Legos until he's 25. He'll be putting them together in college. I've stashed a few things away for our upcoming road trip, because I believe that moms should be skilled toy-hiders so that kids don't get overwhelmed by all the new stuff. Already each surface area in my home is covered with an unfinished Lego creation. But he's happy and I'm glad we have the rule of every-other-year parties because I'd go nuts if this happened every year.

Lastly, thanks for being parents I can breathe normally around and admit all of this to... I sure hope that I'm able to find a group of parents out in Washington State that will appreciate my over-achieving baking skills, my sense of humor, my interest in my son's classroom and school while still maintaining a healthy sense of non-mom self... I am going to miss you all.

I'm glad your kid had a good-time at my son's party. I'm glad that it didn't get rained out, like all of our kids' activities in the past few weeks with this crazy rain (that yes, I realize I'm moving to--please forgive me if I don't laugh too much at that!). I wish I had had a cup of coffee earlier in the day so I could have gone, too!



  1. If I didn't have a kiddo sleeping on the couch nearby, I'd be laughing aloud! You are wise in knowing that sometimes the details don't matter--it's the celebration that's important. Good luck with your move!

  2. What a great letter! Cut yourself some slack- moving is crazy busy time, I know! I am glad you have kept your sense of humor.

  3. What a great letter! Cut yourself some slack- moving is crazy busy time, I know! I am glad you have kept your sense of humor.

  4. Hilarious! :)


  5. Thanks so much for this. It reminded me of once, long ago, when my mother was was in the middle of moving a household of 5 children and all their stuff. I was seven and my sister was turning six that day, so we went around the neighborhood inviting all the children to her party. You can imagine Mom's surprise when everyone started arriving....