March 21, 2005

Competitive Birthday Party-Throwing

It's as bad as you feared, even worse. However much you thought of spending for your kid's birthday party, whatever elaborate entertainment you thought of hiring, it's not enough to outdo some other parent of your kid's friends. There'll always be someone willing to spend more money to make up for a year of coming home from work after the kid's asleep, so you might as well throw in the towel now.

"It's almost competitive at this point," she said. "I wouldn't expect to see favors at a party. But I feel like I have to have them at my party."

Ms. Neglia spent $350 on an elaborate tea party when her daughter turned 6. Her husband rented a tuxedo and served 18 girls who wore white gloves, ate finger foods, played whisper games, decorated straw hats, made pearl bracelets and had their photographs taken on a wing-backed chair.

And now the kids at school tease her because her dad rents his clothes and they don't have proper help.

Playing Pin the Tail on the Donkey Just Won't Do [nyt]


Wow -- that's so elaborate for a party! Our birthday parties have always been low key. A lot of bulk food and a big cake and everyone seems happy!

Dang.. I thought having my 6th birthday party at McDonald's was the coolest thing EVER!

I wonder if you could get away with throwing a kid's birthday party at McDonald's ironically.

Have everyone come in early 1980's clothes, listen to Olivia Newton John and Rush, give them giant brick-shaped cell phones as party favors...

Is it the time/effort/idea or just the dough that parents are competing with?

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