This Mama’s Partysophy

Sylvia is not The Baby anymore. She’s almost one. ONE! (That’s in years). And guess what? We’re not having a party.

Oh she’ll be doted on by me and Travis and her grandparents, and she’ll get to smash apart a miniature carrot cake all her own, but a party with balloons and loot bags and games is not on the agenda.

Travis and I decided we weren’t going to go party-crazy a long time ago. And yet, I’ve found myself explaining our decision almost every day this week. I refuse to buy in to the gift-grab and sugar high of toddler parties. Perhaps the phenomenon is fueled by such shows as Party Mamas and that other one about outrageous kids’ parties (oh look at that, it’s actually called Outrageous Kid Parties. They really thought hard for that one), but the time and money that goes into preparing a grand affair for babies is incredulous.

I have observed that…

1. A one-year-old’s birthday party is not about the child. It’s about the parents (read: mother) outdoing the last parent (mother) who hosted a party.
2. A one-year-old doesn’t want to be in a noisy room full of strangers and corralled into hokey-pokey dancing circles.
3. A one-year-old doesn’t know the guests, cake, and gifts are all for her, so just try telling her she can’t go take a nap because she’s the guest of honour! There’s just no reasoning with a one-year-old.

Sylvia doesn’t need the hoopla and, if the truth be told, neither do I.

It’s not about denying Sylvia a party. It’s about instilling our values (there’s that word again!) early. It’s about minimizing consumerism and maximizing quality time with family. We can celebrate her life to date without extravagance, and we will.

Sure, she’ll only turn one once. That’s why I want it to be stress-free and special. The big top and three-ring circus can wait until she’s at least three.

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