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Friday, June 29, 2012

What kid wants to come to this party, Betty?

June is going and with it so is the annual confusion of birthdays. See, I have a bit of a dilemma: I have three kids at home and three of them have June birthdays. Every year it's the same old problem. What do I do? Should I have a birthday party for each of them? Should I lump all of their parties in one event and wait until their day to give them the rest of their presents and cake? I usually start with good intentions and end up with the latter. My son has an end of June birthday so we usually are all "birthday'd out" by the time his comes. 

LUCKILY for me, I just so happen to have this wonderful and classic Betty Crocker Parties for Children on hand! Should I have a party like the ones depicted in this book or no? Should I feel inadequate as a mother because I do not have a party like the ones depicted in this book? What kid would really want to come to a Betty Crocker inspired party from 1964? I'm guessing zero.

If I drank, these parties would be a perfect opportunity to do so.

Betty Crocker Parties for Children, 1964
With June birthdays for three of my children, I ask the same question when June rolls around. WHY? To boost children's social skills and provide a friendly atmosphere? No. To make parents bat guano crazy as they construct a guest list, reservations, presents, decorations? As a parent, that sounds about right. How about to make all children and not just the birthday guests feel special? Speaking of which, why don't I get a present that day? I'm the one who incubated the little parasites and had them cut from my uterus.
The important question!! Hold the party at your house, nobody's going to want to come. Entice them with a bounce house or the Game Truck, there might be a few more kids. Don't say a clown or a magician. Lame! Even better is to put a nonrefundable deposit on kids themed restaurants or other places and have only a couple of kids show up! Yes! Not only is your child hurt, but you just sank a few hundred dollars into nothing but an ego crushing, heartbreaking event. And your child is going to be reeling over why nobody likes him or her.
And what a motley crew of guests that did show up. Did they show up on their own accord or did they come because their parents are like me and make their kids go to every party they are invited to because sometimes they are the only kids to show up. Let's see, we have Karen with the too short dress and itchy crotch, Charles who is a little too "happy", Ed the knicker wearing, football carrying, big eared loser. Selma the nose picker. Fred and Frank who swear they are just best buds, and Gloria and her dog Bruno. Gloria looks like the most normal. Plus I had a dog named Bruno.
I'm looking at this guest and thinking HAYYYLLL NO! 10 guests for a 5-6 year old? 12 and 18 for a 7 and 8 year old? 10 and 15 giggling preteen girls? Shudder to think! If I went by that, I would have potentially 37 kids to entertain.
I'm sure kids are eagerly anticipating being invited to someone's Book Week, Election Day, Back to school, Columbus Day, or any dead President's day parties. Why would a child have an election day party? Are they old enough to vote? Groom 'em to the partisan politics of today while they are still young.
Oh how clever! Write the word "Party" backwards.
"These handwritten cards for the pow wow party and party train are a great idea," said no one ever.
Any kid will tell you it's not the party that matters. The blood, sweat, tears, stress, second mortgage, maxed out credit cards are nothing in the myopic mind of a child. It's the SWAG! If you fill it with dollar store toys and crappy candy, the kid is a loser. If you don't offer one, the kid is a loser and you suck as a parent. They just suck no matter what. Why should I reward kids with SWAG by coming to my kid's party? I invited the little brats. They should be thanking ME! But, the world is not perfect so fill the bags with SWAG but don't put too much thought into it. No kid is going to be content with an Iron Man eraser or fireball candy. The parent is going to be mad that you put little cans of play doh in there. Lose Lose.
Pizza, chips, cake, ice cream, juice boxes or soda. There is no need to go all out like this. Period dot com, end of story.

Game time! Let's teach 6 year olds about murder and pig racing, 9 year olds can roam the neighborhood looking for paper clips or something green (do a head count before they embark on this adventure), Horse Racing and Cotton Ball toss for the 8 year old group, Feel it for the 10 year olds. Feel what? 11 year olds won't be interested in the games either. I am trying to imagine a 10 year old saying they played "Feel It" at a party. Oh how harmless the 1960s were!
One might feel a stab of envy looking at this perfectly coiffed mother with her legs tucked under her while she shares creative little stories for these young minds. I served 12 years in the navy. My stories would get me arrested.
Pin the button on the happy pervie clown! Yay fun! Blindfold kids, turn them around in circles and give them a pointy object and hope they get it on the picture and not in someone's carotid artery.
The first look at this picture, I can breathe a sigh of relief that I need NOTHING to make this game happen. Second glance makes me think that boy is going to leave with a black eye if he pokes the girl. She may have her petticoats and small feet, but I bet she packs a hell of a punch.
Is this what "Feel It!" is supposed to be? The kid looks like he's going get a case of the vapors. Lesson learned. If a boy is wearing a bowtie to a party, don't touch him because he's probably the most uptight of the group. Somebody get this young lad some smelling salts!
It involves nothing because nobody in that age group is going to be interested. Now would be a good idea to 86 these lame games and serve some cake.
Find me a parent who lets their kids switch clothes at a party. That ought to leave memories. Not good ones. "What did you do at the party, Nicky?" "We switched clothes and I got to wear a dress, Mom." This is really a bad idea. Bad, bad, bad, bad, bad.
Musical chairs. Shit just got real.
Since Betty Crocker is the epitome of all things evil, these pictures somehow do not convey their actual caption. One would think the little girl was sitting there minding her own business while the boy made a feel for her, white knuckled grip on the chair. Really they are playing a game called "Chip Change" where the kids get chips and when someone calls "CHANGE" they drop the chips into the lap of the child on the right. If they have difficulty determining the left and right, they are to raise their flag saluting hand. This game is stupid. I think I like my original thought on the picture better.

I do not finish this blog entry feeling like an insignificant mother who is depriving my children their birthday parties. If anything, I feel glad that I don't go through all of this mess. The more simple the party, the more the kid is going to remember it.

From now on, I better ask more questions about what goes on at these parties.

Betty Crocker, I am not finished with you yet!!! The world will see you for the evil incarnate you are! 

Until next time!! 


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  2. These pics crack me up and your comments are hilarious! When my husband's aunt cleaned out one of her closets, she had a few old cookbooks. I don't think I would try any recipes but they were fun all the same :)

  3. Oh my god, you made me laugh with this! Trying to plan a.5yr old
    Party at the moment!
    Thanks ����

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