Permission to party easy

Marcel’s birthday party was yesterday. It was old school. He only invited four friends (plus a sibling or two). You turn four, you get to invite four friends. That was the formula my mom used, and it works. It was all boys. That’s what he asked for. It was outside in a park. I asked him what he could do with his friends if he could pick anything.  He chose the thing he does best: baseball.

I wanted to have it over with early because I knew that a day of waiting for a party would unravel him. When he is unraveled it gets ugly around here.

So we put all that together, and had the easiest party EVER. I sent the invites out three weeks ago; bring a glove, and a mug. Come to the park (which overlooks the Casco Bay, and has a playground and a ball field) at 8:45 am! Kids get up early. Parents need coffee. Everyone needs breakfast.

Our friends stayed for three hours, and left with exhausted, sun drenched, happy kids. I paid for two boxes of coffee, and two dozen donuts and some cider.  No balloons, face painting, tokens or themes. Just a ball field and a gorgeous day. For goodie bags I handed out toys Marcel was done with, and books we had read.

Marcel reported it was the best party EVER.  I agree. To keeping it simple, and allowing for play!

Bleachers, table cloth, coffee and a pumpkin for decoration
Someone needs to taste the various options of donuts...
Everyone needs to know their position for the game

All games have their own rules ultimately.

Have any great easy party stories to share? Do you keep to the “invite as many kids as you are turning” formula?  What wisdom do you have to share on the topic?


  1. Man, my birthday is next Saturday. If I use your formula for guests, I’m going to have to rent a hall! Glad you gave me a heads up!
    You couldn’t have asked for better weather!!!!!
    Happy Birthday Marcel.

  2. Happy Birthday Marcel!! I wish I could plan to have Jupiter’s birthday outside, but it’s just enough on the late side of October that I know if I PLAN to have it outside at the playground, it will either rain or be frightfully cold. Although a case could be made to have it two weeks early and thus lessen the pre birthday anxiety which is compounding the pre Halloween anxiety. Maybe next year. I just finished writing out Jupiter’s invitations (she asked for five girls, so I was okay with that) on plain colored contstruction paper and trimming them up with fancy edged sissors. She wants them to dress in maybe they will play in the dress up box the whole time. Works for me. And she wants a pinata, which are expensive to buy. Trying to figure out if I can make one out of paper mache. They have directions for everything on the internet these days, so I’m sure we could make our own if we were so inclined.

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