Post # 1
Be honest: Do you LIKE going to 1st birthday parties. Like, when you get the invitation, do you think to yourself “oh cool, I can’t wait to go! or “oh crap. Now I have to go to this?!”
DH and I are debating with my MIL about having a 1st birthday party for our DS, who turns 1 at the end of this month. She claims that people LOVE going to baby’s birthday parties, while we would both rather slit our wrists.
DH and I have a strict “we don’t host parties we wouldn’t want to go to” policy (hence why I didn’t have a bridal or baby shower), and we believe that 1st birthdays falls into this category. We want to have just our parents and siblings over for dinner the weekend before his birthday (something we do often), and have a cake. Nice and simple.
MIL has offered to host a big blowout, but we won’t take her up on it. We just really don’t want a party, don’t think it’s necessary, don’t think it’s fun for anyone attending, don’t want people to feel obligated to buy him gifts, and don’t think our son is going to remember it anyways, so why do it?
What are your feelings on the subject?
Post # 2
ExcitedScaredBee: i don’t have kids of my own, i have nieces and nephews and cousins. I enjoy going bc I love seeing the kids have fun.
DH and I have had the talk about big parties (for our future kdis), in our family every kid gets a big party for everything, baptism, birthdays, communions, etc. It gets expensive! So I told DH that we are either having a big baptism or big first birthday, not both bc it can go into the thousands bc there are so many kids and then there are the parents.
Post # 3
i think it’s your call. we had our son’s bday party at a local pizza place with pizza and beer – tried to make it a party adults would at least enjoy. i think the first birthday party is more celebrating the parents getting through the first year than celebrating the child having a birthday, haha! do what you want!
Post # 4
ExcitedScaredBee: Don’t have children of my own, but have friends and family members with children, and I LOVE going to their birthday parties (especially a 1st birthday). Enjoy watching the kids grow up & being a part of their life. It’s great to celebrate the special life of someone. But I totally get where you’re coming from, do what you and your DH are comfortable with!
Post # 5
- Wedding: September 2012 - Southern California
I don’t mind going if it’s more adult-centered. I know technically it’s the child’s birthday, but he won’t remember nor will he likely care haha. Provide food & allow alcohol & DH & I are there to celebrate & bring the little one a gift 😉
Post # 6
I like going to first birthday parties that are what they really are. A party for the grown ups. Parties that pretend to be about the kids drive me nuts.
Have the family over for food and some drinks and it’s all good – a kid themed/kid-centric first birthday party is just annoying.
(Exception – if you’re only inviting parents with other one/two year olds and having a glorified play date I think that’s okay)
Post # 7
More detail to our particular situation:
1) Our families are not drinkers. Alcohol just isn’t served at family gatherings (excpet big parties like weddings). Therefore, an alcohol centric party (while it sounds like more fun!) probably won’t happen for us.
2) It’s a Jewish holiday the Wednesday and Thursday before his birthday, so we’re literally seeing DH’s entire family 3 days before his MIL wants to hold this party. So everyone will have just seen our son.
3) We are definitely not having a party involving friends/their kids. Everyone is so busy and weekends are so precious. We would never want them to have to give up family time to celebrate our kids birthday (or buy him gifts). We’d rather go out to dinner and grab a drink with just the adults on another weekend!
Post # 8
MsGinkgo: I was just at a 1st birthday party that was called for 1 pm. The only food was a veggie tray and a cheese tray. The only drinks were flat and sparkling water. Everyone was starving and sat around staring at eachother for an hour until the host decided to have the 1 year old open presents (cue the ooohhh, aaahhh, “so cute” comments that I HATE from bridal/baby showers).
Then they did a horribly underwhelming cake smash, and I called it quits at 2:30 and busted the heck out of there feeling like I was cheated out of my Sunday.
That is the last thing I would wish upon any of my family/friends!
Post # 9
ExcitedScaredBee: yeah, that would be AWFUL!
Based on what you said, I’d skip the baby birthday party all together!
Post # 10
ExcitedScaredBee: I’ll be honest. Unless the child is my niece or nephew, I’m in it for the food and booze. Watching them eat their cake is cute but after that, I’m ready to move on.
Post # 11
Honestly I don’t see the point in a giant party for a first birthday (like the one North West had). But it should be celebrated for sure. Invite parents, siblings and maybe a close friend or 2 over for cake and pizza. Doesn’t have to be anything fancy. But watching a 1 year old smash cake into their faces is amazing. My niece never had sugar until her first birthday cake and held it up like a prize.
Enjoy your weekends while you can. Friends of mine with kids (particularly when they get to school) have birthday parties to attend just about every weekend.
Post # 12
I love my friend’s kids. I really do. And I love to buy them presents and celebrate them. What I don’t love is parties that involve a bunch of different groups of people all lumped, awkwardly together and expected to socialize. So, I think parties are just fine. But you don’t need to invite everyone from each of your social circles. Do family or close friends or whatever.
Post # 13
I don’t go to first (or any children’s) birthday parties, but I am fortunate not to have to turn down such invitations because it is not a practice amongst my friends.
Luckily all of us have the same beliefs- that children’s birthday parties are for immediate family only, adding a few friends when they are older.
In some cultures it is common to hold more elabortae parties. In that case “Sorry, but I have a previous engagement.”
Post # 14
julies1949: You sound like me! I missed all 4 baby showers I was invited to this summer because I had a “previous engagement”. I consider spending the day at the pool with my baby during the few precious warm weekend days of summer to be previously engaged.
One person having the shower commented on how coincidental it was that I was busy all 4 days (they were all coworkers or former coworkers so we were all invited to each). I just smiled and nodded.
I try to never host a party/gathering that people begrudgingly attend out of obligation.
Post # 15
ExcitedScaredBee: hahaha you are just like me. i love that rule – same here. no bridal shower and no baby shower bc people generally attend out of obligation!!