The Birthday Party That Almost Wasn’t

As I mentioned, we’re doing a joint birthday party again this year for Crappy Boy and Crappy Baby. This weekend actually. 

I’ve still never told the story of last year’s party. Which I should do just in case something even better happens this year…

The kids are all about pirates. Pirates, pirates, pirates. Pirates all day long. So naturally, the party will include pirate stuff too.

birthday party

We have it all! It is awesome! A jolly roger piรฑata. A pirate ship cake. A bouncer. Balloons and streamers. Hand-painted pirate signs. Tons of food. We have two trays of sandwiches, enough to feed at least 40 people. We even put treasure in the sandbox (jewels, jewelry, coins, toys) for kids to dig up. 

It is the night before and everything is in place. 

Before bed, I quickly check evite to see if there are any last minute changes:

birthday party1

Nope! Everyone is coming!

We go to sleep.

In the morning, I get a call from Wendy that her eldest girl had a fever the night before so they probably shouldn’t come. I know this will be really disappointing to Crappy Boy and Baby. That knocks three whole kids from the list, too. Bummer.

I check evite again, just to be sure the other six kids are coming:

birthday party2 

Nope. ZERO kids are coming.

Every single family with a kid cancelled within the last 12 hours.

Crap.

I corner Crappy Papa in the kitchen and whisper the news:

birthday party3

He panics too. He suggests we “find some” but we realize this is impossible. All the kids we know well were already invited. The ones we don’t know well won’t exactly appreciate a last minute invite for a party that starts in two hours. They’ll know they were second tier. 

Putting a call out on the internet for Southern California kids ages 3-6 might work. Especially if we say it is a casting call for a movie. But that would be sorta creepy. Plus, hired party attendees is even more pathetic than having none at all.  

Sigh. There is no hope. No kids are coming. 

And now I have to tell them and ruin their childhood:

birthday party4

Their shoulders droop. Their eyes well up with tears. They look dejected.

I consider running into the kitchen to stab myself with a fork to ease the pain in my heart.

Crappy Boy looks up at me and says, devastated:

birthday party5 

He asks about the piรฑata. He assumes that if there isn’t a group of kids to be involved it can’t happen at all. (Likely because I have explained that we only do piรฑatas at parties with other kids after he asked for one on a random Thursday.)

I explain:

birthday party6

They realize that this means they’ll get ALL the candy and toys! 

birthday party7

And their childhood was saved once again. By candy. 

——————–

In the end, Pops (their grandfather) arrived and said, “You want a kid? I can get you a kid. Believe me.”  (Think The Big Lebowski - except not toes) And he did. It was a family friend whom we didn’t think to invite because he is a few years older. So they spent the day playing basketball with the “cool older kid” along with an aunt and uncles and grandparents.

It also turned out that Wendy’s eldest daughter no longer had a fever and felt fine. So they all came later that afternoon (after everyone else left) and partied until dark. So it was like they had two parties!  

PS – People often ask me how Wendy is doing and wanted to share that you can read her CaringBridge page for updates. All I ask is that you don’t bombard her guestbook with a bunch of “I’m so sorry for you!” messages because those only make people feel like shit. And I will cut you. Tell her a joke or send her healing vibes and nice positive stuff like that instead. Please. 

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109 Responses to The Birthday Party That Almost Wasn’t

  1. Cora says:

    I love the “And I will cut you” in the PS! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Erin says:

    I’ve had parties like that. My birthday, frequently falling on Memorial Day weekend/Graduation, falls behind family vacations etc. Some years no one can come and your boys handled it much more gracefully than I have in the past.

    • Emily says:

      I’m Labor Day! No one can ever make it to my parties. This was harder for my partner to accept when she planned my surprise party than for me.

    • Annie says:

      I’m New Years, and my step-sister is Christmas. We have always had pitty parties for ourselves right between the two, because everyone else was “busy”. Psh.

      • Jessi says:

        I feel your pain, mine’s Dec 23! Talk about everyone completely forgetting in the last minute race to buy and wrap gifts. Hell, even my husband’s family forgets and the last two years have wanted to celebrate Christmas on my birthday. I told them if they did it, I wouldn’t be coming.

    • Devan says:

      My daughter is turning 3 on Nov 23….look it up, BLACK FRIDAY!! Ugh, we are just starting to find out about the “no one cares about your birthday” plague. Poor thing, right now she does not know the difference, but she will.

      • Samantha says:

        my son’s first birthday is that day! I know he wont care, but I do! It’s more of a celebration for my husband and myself. Good luck!

  3. april says:

    we had a pinata for my 2 year olds bday last year. It was so hot though everyone left before we could do it. so my two girls and thier cousin got the same thing all the candy to themselves. told 7 year old no parties now. they can take a friend to the movies or something and we will get ice cream afterward but thats it. trying to keep up with all these fancy parties at college pools and bounce places and other expensive venues is killing me.

    • Heidi says:

      No kidding! What is up with the crazy expensive/fancy parties? Is a little backyard get-together no longer acceptable? I think kids birthday parties have become more of a competition between mothers than it is about the kids anymore!

      • sarah s. says:

        you can still do a party or just a group of 3 slumber party or something. hang out at the mall or playgrounds or whatever. I can’t afford to do the kids places like bounce houses and chuckecheez so we planned to do her birthday party at a park on saturday but i just found out that the 87 degree weather will take a dive the night before leaving us with 45-55 degree weather with some rain and 19 mile an hour winds. geez. so hopefully the next day.

    • Laura says:

      Having bday parties at kids places isn’t about competition ime, it’s just a way to buy your way to an easier organising responsibility. No cleaning the house before and after, shopping for and making of food and no worries with 10 sugar high kids running and sword fighting in a 2 bedroom house.
      The kids places also know how much food and drink to serve, which I always manage to mess up, either we run out of pop (embarrassing!) or we’re left with a ton of home made cake that most guests didn’t even want to taste.

      2/3 of our boys were born in February and the year we tried to organize a sledge riding party at the slope in the public park next door it was 0 degrees F on the day and we had to move the party into our house again.

      If we could have nice garden parties for the kids, that would def be great! I’m not into crafts, blog-fancy baking or party organizing in general, so I just try to make it easy for myself by using services. I think it’s great when my kids are invited to a nice home birthday party and they like it too.

      • Mychal says:

        Around us, no matter the venue, kids’ birthday parties are definitely a way for parents to one-up each other. Maybe because it’s a wealthier suburb? I don’t know. But one at one party (in a backyard; no one does ChuckeCheese’s here) one of the party favors was a beta fish, complete with bowl, food and accessories, not to mention the regular candy and toys! It was a big party too– lots of beta fish. For a 4 year old. At a farm themed party it was gourmet cow-shaped cheeses and crackers, along with nice candies and toys, of course. Like the kids were going to be impressed by fancy cheese? No way– totally for the parents.

        Most people seem to have these elaborate parties at their homes, but it’s not because we want a ‘simple backyard party’ but because they have to prove how good of a hostess they are! The ones that are at local bowling alleys and things are probably cheaper to put on, more exciting for the kids, and less stressful for the grown ups! It’s ridiculous, really.

        • katja says:

          Wow, that’s just great insight. I’m from Europe and when I was thinking up the last party I planned (2 and 4 yr old) I was blown away by what I found online. When I asked a friend she said it was of the Disney-culture in the US. Take the kids away into fantasy world for a few hours. So I went all out and made up some story about a knight and princess that had to defeat a dragon with the help of their friends. Feeding it made it fall asleep so i made a huge dragon head with a hole for the mouth and we played a beanbag toss to collect favors (plastic goblets with gold coins). And I made this whole thing about the kids having to find their wand and sword and then decorate, etc. Anyway, It was fancy but all with the Disney thing in mind and the kids loved it. Now I’m wondering if any of the parents thought I put in all that effeort for them……?????

  4. april says:

    we had a pinata for my 2 year olds bday last year. It was so hot though everyone left before we could do it. so my two girls and thier cousin got the same thing all the candy to themselves. told 7 year old no parties now (she is a winter baby and we cant realistaclly hold a party at my house). they can take a friend to the movies or something and we will get ice cream afterward but thats it. trying to keep up with all these fancy parties at college pools and bounce places and other expensive venues is killing me.

  5. Lacey S says:

    This was my son’s first birthday – all adults and no kids – but he didn’t care ๐Ÿ˜› In our case it was because 1) We had it 3 hours away from home at my parent’s house, so none of his daycare friends or our friend’s children could make it, 2) The date for the party had to be moved twice because of my Grandmother’s failing health (miss you, Gramma ๐Ÿ™ ) and 3) my friends in the area who had kids could come… and then bailed at the last minute like yours all did. But B was surrounded by toys, including some very, very awesome ones, and no kids to try “stealing” them, so he was in heaven!!

    We’ll see how #2 goes…

  6. Mel says:

    This happens EVERY YEAR for my kids birthday parties! I don’t do parties at my house, and every location (Chuck E Cheese, skating rink, etc, etc) all require a minimum amount of kids! Do you know how frustrating it is to find at least 8 kids to show up to a free birthday party?! I’m starting this years party, and I already know that no one that I invite is going to show. Happens. Every. Year. for 10 years now!

    • Blue Fairy says:

      maybe you could try doing the “choose one friend and we’ll go have a fabulous day somewhere special, and eat out for all meals, and have a sleepover” option? that’s what i do with my kids – a party OR a whole fabulous day. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Jo says:

      After 10 years, your kid(s) might be old enough to be agreeable to the bribery birthday that’s been a winner here. Offer kid the chance to get extra presents for the cash value you would have spent on a party. We’ve moved around several times in the last 6 years and it’s exhausting to determine how many new friends will make the time to come to a party. (Happy ending though – we’ve finally moved back to original place and all our old dear friends…guess we might have to have a real party this year.)

  7. Betsy says:

    reminds me of the time (ok, last year) when I carefully organized a swimming party for my daughter’s birthday. First the address on the invite was wrong so as we drove the 45 minutes to the venue I had to frantically call every parent to tell the actual address. Then we arrived and the guests — many of whom had beat us there — came to us with faces of doom and said “They don’t have your name on the roster.”
    Yup, I had planned the party for the wrong day. The following day, in fact. There was no room at the inn. 12 disappointed children with bathing suits on. Oh, and the kid whose mom ended up driving to the OTHER END OF THE CITY. ๐Ÿ™
    Fortunately the organizing fairy opened a not-party room for us and we swam to our hearts’ content and then had our party in a comfy, not-party room, and the party was saved. But now I am scared of having out-of-the-house parties. (Although big brother’s party, at an ARCHERY STUDIO was pretty good — despite the archery teacher being, quite literally, a drill sargeant, however you spell that, who ridiculed the boys for chatting amongst themselves. He was kind of a jerk. But good at archery. And no one got shot, which is better than you can say for a lot of parties that happen in Seattle, sadly).

    • Lacey S says:

      I was all “Archery Studio?? Why can’t we have coolness like that here in Seattle! Wait, WHAT?” I will have to look into that! You, my friend, have redefined what it is to be a cool mom, and given me something to aspire to in about 8 years ๐Ÿ˜€

    • Jen says:

      Ok – so I have to know WHERE in Seattle is this archery studio? My Son LOVES archery and this would be perfect for him!!

      • Betsy says:

        The Nock Point. It’s near Seattle … http://www.thenockpoint.com. But if I said “Mountlake Terrace,” would the folks all over the world who read this blog react? you can go and just do archery with your kid, buy archery supplies, or have lessons or a party. It definitely caters to hunters!

  8. christin says:

    You must get a really rough crowd to need a bouncer.We don’t need any security at our parties.

  9. Lisa says:

    My bithday frequently falls on Thanksgiving Weekend (or even Thanksgiving day) so I have had my whole family forget my birthday. I don’t think I would have handled that half as well as your crappy kids did. One year I spent the whole day alone watching a Star Trek marathon on television and playing Pokemon (okay, yes, I was/am a total nerd) and the first person to tell my happy birthday was my best friend who had moved across the country who called me at 4 in the afternoon. My parents explanation: ‘We thought you’d have plans with your friends/boyfriend.’ Friends and Boyfriend’s explanation: ‘We thought you had plans with your family.’ I pouted for a week.

    • Kimberly S. says:

      That sucks!! I don’t blame you for pouting. Growing up, my parent’s always had my b-day party with my family on Super Bowl Sunday. So I’d be at one end of the room opening presents while everyone else was glued to the tv watching the super bowl. It was never much fun for me and I didn’t like football until I was an adult. Although now, the Super Bowl is a week later, so my b-day is no longer celebrated the same day. That and I don’t live near family anymore anyway.

    • Happy says:

      My little’s birthday is either around or on Thanksgiving too. Any suggestions on how to make sure he has a great (and separate from Turkey day) experience?

      • Jessi says:

        Make a separate outing that doesn’t involve anything holiday related. Let him choose what to do (movie, bowling, etc.) and that he can bring a friend. Since mine’s at Christmas, that’s how my parent’s did it. Also, not relevant to you, but I wouldn’t open any birthday gifts that were wrapped in Christmas paper.

      • Devan says:

        My baby is turning 3 on Nov 23, BLACK FRIDAY! What am I supposed to do with that? Right now she’s too young to know, but she will eventually.

  10. Michelle C says:

    Aww…my son, who’s going to turn 21 in November, had a similar experience when he was 10 or 11, but not so happy an ending. He was never a kid for parties, but that year he planned a sleepover party for 4 of his friends plus him. Everyone cancelled at the last minute and his party ended up being a bust. He was so disappointed at the time that we ended up bringing him to the movies. He felt a little better, but was never as close to those friends as he used to be. Now he’s happy if we cook him his favorite dinner and buy him a video game. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Kati says:

    I think that was THE BEST! My 4yr old HATES parties. I mean will cling to me and doesn’t want to play with other kids unless he knows them!

  12. Elisabeth says:

    This happened to us! Only we did get 3 children in the end. But we invited 12 children and on party day, we expected 8! One last minute cancellation and one complete no-show. I was mortified. Fortunately, my 3 year old didn’t know the difference. I think the answer for next year will be to invite like 20 children and spend ZERO time next time making favors, snacks, decorations, etc. Just give out candy and let it be a sugary chaos if kids actually show?

    • amber says:

      That is pretty much my plan for this weekend! Zero fuss + sugar. Don’t tell the people coming.

    • Lacey S says:

      PERFECT solution! As someone who has driven hours to attend a child’ birthday party with my son, compete no-shows tick me off to no end!

    • Betsy says:

      PRETTY Much gauruntees 20 kids will come, with their cousins in town from Tulsa. And their dogs. And at least one child will vomit. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Sheryl says:

    That brought back some memories…

    My oldest had a birthday party at ChuckECheese when she was 5. We waited for 2pm, no kids. 2:15, no kids. I did frantically call anyone I knew with kids, it was pathetic. She asked, “Where are my friends?” and I of course asked her “Do you have any friends?” (This was the 1 and only year that she tried to be a bully at school. Point taken, now she’s much nicer, albeit very quiet.) We did end up with about 6 kids in total (including my 2)..

  14. Ophelia says:

    This is all a bit worrying! My daughter’s first birthday was a week after we moved to the US, so we didn’t know A SINGLE PERSON here plus her birthday fell on the only foggy day that week literally we couldn’t see any other buildings from our window and couldn’t even take her to the park ๐Ÿ™ Luckily she was too little to notice. I am sending positive vibes for your party this weekend, please send some for my party next weekend (13th) – so far we have 9 two year olds coming and I have spent waaay too much money on this party for anyone to cancel!!!

  15. neal says:

    If only my wedding could have turned out like your party invite. Sending out all of the invites, letting everyone know that I like them and think they’re cool and totally want them all up in my business for hours while I’m just thinking about how to get us away for our honeymoon already…

    Best case scenario would be every last person RSVPing and saying they couldn’t make it. ALL THE RECEPTION CHEESECAKE FOR ME! No shaking hands! No reception line! Oh, man, that would have been a dream come true.

    I’m kind of a curmudgeon.

    • Jen says:

      That’s called ELOPING -but then,no reception cheesecake ๐Ÿ™

      • Mychal says:

        I’m sure they could’ve gotten a cheesecake someplace on their honeymoon…

        probably a lot of cheesecakes, actually, considering how much they would’ve saved by not having a fancy wedding.

        • neal says:

          Thing is, in-laws give you the stink-eye when you don’t invite them to something. The best is to make them feel like you TOTALLY wanted them around, and then them not being able to show up. Everyone’s happy.

  16. Candi says:

    My kid has a birthday right at the last weekend of the school year, so almost every year families would take the kids on vacation. Now her birthday is right before finals week in college, which is worse!

    But my biggest “party fail” was my own wedding. There was a freak heat wave. It was an outdoor wedding. 100 people were supposed to show, but 35 showed up. Granted, it was 104. I would’ve stayed home too. It was still fun, but expensive. Second marriage: I eloped. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  17. Jo says:

    GAH birthday disappointment is the worst. And parents suck. Don’t they get it??? So glad it all worked out!

  18. Becca says:

    yes, that totally fits with my theory of party planning.

    # of people who show up is inversely proportionate to amount of time times amount of money spent on the party.

    so if you plan on lots of cheap sugar and no favors, no tablecloths, no anything then lots of people will show up.

  19. To heck with peers, it’s all about the candy. And cake. Lots and lots of cake. Every year we talk about inviting other children, and every year it just ends up being family. And that’s ok. Let them eat cake.

  20. Samii says:

    Love this. My kids have halloween bdays, so we do it up. Everybody dresses, up, the whole lot. I’m stressing this year about too MANY people. Will I have enough food? Will the bounce house fit? This year’s theme: renaissance – inspiration – Disney Pixar’s movie, Brave. Fun stuff, but a lot of work and moolah… er $$.

  21. Momma of 3 says:

    This sounds like my 2-year-old’s party history. His baby shower ended up being a card given at a work luncheon and his baptismal party was the same day as a co-workers wedding (which we weren’t invited to), so only 3 people showed up. For his first birthday party we invited 3 families with kids about his age, and within the last 12 hours before the party, all 3 had called in sick. Attempts to reschedule never came together. His second birthday party had to be postponed when his little brother was unexpectedly born 2 weeks early (at home, no less) the day before the party. When rescheduled for a week later, only one guest could make it, and sure enough, she called in sick about an hour before the party. I’m just thankful that he’s still too young to be disappointed.

  22. Kim says:

    The one party that every. single. person. I. invited. showed up to was the one party that we had to pay an entrance fee for anyone over 3. My daughter was turning four…so that was just about everyone except younger siblings! Three of the people I invited called and asked if they could “also bring my husband and my other kids”.

    o_O

    (It IS a great location…a Pumpkin Patch w/pumpkins, petting zoo, big bouncy pumpkin pillow-of-death, barrel-train rides, wagon rides, corn maze…)

    • Stephanie says:

      Seriously! Our last birthday party I had spent MONTHS planning. It was a mad science party with individual experiments and personalized lab coats and take-home science kits with $6 geyser tubes. We got a decent number of RSVP’s, so those are the kids I spent the time preparing for, and actually had stuff for them to do. Then I got 5 – FIVE – RSVP’s within 12 hours, and 2 who just showed up. Along with 3 others who brought along little brothers and cousins without telling anyone.

      Eventually I had to just throw up my hands and mutter “Some people’s children!” under my breath, and then roll with it. And ignore the kids who whined that they didn’t have a lab coat with their name on it….

  23. Katie says:

    I love how you just publicly called out all of last year’s guests. I’m sure they know who they are. I’m guessing this year’s guests will all show for fear of seeing themselves pop up in a future Crappy Picture!

  24. Woolies says:

    Oh I have such birthday party stories.

    ….there was the creepy magician party….

    ….and the Spongebob party in the backyard that included bobbing for sponges – hmm, that was the same party that at 7am that morning my finger was caught in a folding adirondack chair and I bled all day, and finally at 4pm after the party was over and hubby was lying on the couch, I drove myself to the ER.
    Want to crappify that story?? :)))))

  25. Tricia says:

    Almost the same thing happened to my son last year on his birthday. But it wasnt just kids that cancelled. It was EVERYONE!!! First one sister called and said she was sick, then my other sister called and said she wasnt coming, then my brother in law called and said they werent coming because it was snowing (barely). The look on my 4 year olds face broke my heart and we cried together. One of my sisters felt bad and ended up coming, along with my parents, my husband, my daughter and my self. It was small but he ended up going to sleep with a smile on his face ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Jennifer F.M. says:

    Love it! As someone who’s birthday is Jan.9- I have not had much success with birthday parties in my life. Too soon after the Holidays, or it snows. Now that I’m old I don’t care, but I sure hated it as a kid. Hope your birthday combo party is a complete smash! ๐Ÿ™‚

  27. RedinNC says:

    At the kid’s 3rd bday party I had invited 11 kids and 5 showed up. So in the effort to get a couple more kids, for the 4th bday I invited 15… and 15 showed up. For the 5th, I invited 17… and 17 showed up. This last bday I wisened up and invited 12… and got 10 showing. I dunno, it seems the more I invite the greater the percentage of attendees. Weird.

  28. Shea says:

    Omg the same thing happened to us last week except ONE other kid came haha. They had a total blast with everything all to themselves including the bouncey ๐Ÿ˜‰

  29. E. Rodriguez says:

    This was my son’s birthday. ๐Ÿ™ Thank goodness he was too little to realize how thoroughly he’d been ditched.

  30. Leah says:

    I have a 2 year old and a 5 year old and live in Hawthorne! But not the ghetto part! Invite meeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. Kaity says:

    I have to wonder why people RSVP and then not show up at the last minute. I understand things genuinely come up, but it can’t be the case for every single person who no-shows. For all my daughter’s birthday parties, every party my husband and I try to get together for a friend, and even our wedding, almost everyone who was supposed to be there either called and said something came up or just didn’t show up completely. I ended up with no bridesmaids at my own wedding because they all had something come up that they needed to do.
    In short, I feel for your kids. My daughter’s fourth birthday party is this month and I’m praying people actually show up this time.

  32. Bess says:

    We convinced our 7-yr-old to have only a small family party by promising to spend more money on gifts. We’ll end up saving a couple hundred bucks! No feelings get hurt and she gets more presents.

  33. stagirl74 says:

    That was awesome! My stomach hurts from laughing. If me & my daughter lived near you we’d come, I love pinatas! My best friend & I lived together for 2 years, and we did one every New Years Day. We put candy and gross beef sausages in it for laughs. We mentioned things that pissed us off during the year and beat the sh*&! out of the thing!! Thanks for the laugh, I needed that!

  34. Rachel Emrath says:

    I totally blew off a friend’s child’s birthday party recently. In my defense, my little boy was less than two months old and I completely and utterly forgot. She called me and asks “are you still coming?” and there was so much blank silence on my end she thought the call had dropped. I was frantically raking my brain trying to figure out what she was referring to. I apologized profusely and was honest with her. Thankfully she has 4 children and knows all about baby brain drain. Man I felt like a jerk though.

    For our birthday parties, I limit it to a small number and let the people know when we invite them that it’s a small party and I’ll need their RSVP. Then, I quiz them to make sure they’re still coming. Worked well this year, only one no show and I knew that one was a possibility.

  35. I planned a MegaBloks party for my son for the blog once and invited his entire daycare, but didn’t invite the friends across the street because I was afraid I would run out of MegaBloks to give away. We cleaned the whole house (he helped) and arranged his play room with all the new blocks…and NOBODY showed up…nobody!! When we told him…MegaBloks were thrown and things were not pretty. ๐Ÿ™

  36. Grown up kids says:

    We limited each of our kids to 2 parties. The twins of course had the same party, and their younger brother also got 2. Firsts party was in 1st grade, the 2nd party was in 5th or 6th grade. In between and after they had family get togethers, or sleep-overs with a few friends. I don’t regret not planning 2 big parties every year one bit. My oldest are turning 21 on Friday. Their dad and I are taking them to dinner and their first legal drink, they go out with friends (on public transportation) after that. I’m a little nervous.

  37. Ceri says:

    oh I feel this. We have my son’s 5th Birthday party this weekend. What happens? Our back bedroom smells like POOP! How is THAT for a crappy party?? Literly…. we have Septic, and were Stressed about problems. This moring a call goes to the septic guy. I think we may have saved our problem though, we don’t use one of our bathrooms. (It needs a new toilet in a bad way and is super tiny) Well there is something called the P-Trap, if you don’t use your pluming then the water gets all old, and dried up, so the smell comes up. (I HOPE anyway that is what the problem is) we were told, flush, and call us on Monday. Oh and ya, we have invited 12 kids actually more, if I count day care and preschool, and I think only 3 are coming. My son is turning 5 and is SO exited about his birthday, I really hope he’s not disappointed if only 4 kids show up. And plus, this is just WAY To much work for only 4 kids.

  38. Yep, my son’s 2nd birthday was just like that. He wasn’t old enough to care though and I LOVED the fact he didn’t have to share all his new toys LOL AND all eyes on my baby LOL

  39. Julia Adams says:

    I made the Pirate Ship Cake from family fun for a 3rd birthday but only skimmed the directions and missed the part about cutting the rounded sides flat to set the ship flat on a plate. It turned out amazing. So the pirate ship cake is being lifted to take to the picnic table and the ship SPLITS IN HALF! I almost died on the spot but the chants of “here comes the cake!” left me no choice but to deliver the mess to the birthday boy. I set it down in front of him and he yelled “Shipwreck cake! Awesome!” Leave it to my little pirate to find the hidden treasure ๐Ÿ™‚

  40. Betty says:

    And then there was the year we had a karate party and the karate school WAS CLOSED when we arrived. Yep. The guy forgot. I totally panicked. Another parent saved the day by suggesting we walk over to a school playground and have the party there. My husband ran to the store and got plates, cups, juice. Amazingly, another parent had the school’s owner’s home phone number! His wife tracked him down and he arrived unshaven and disheveled but we had a great party and he told us to pay him whatever. So except for the massive anxiety attack, it ended up being a fun and very affordable party!!

  41. ABGray says:

    My daughter hates the shoving, grabbing, pushing part of the piรฑata at birthday parties. She usually just stands back and we get candy when we get home (mom has a secret stash). Lightbulb moment I can get one just for her for her birthday. Queen of the day ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. Sarah says:

    Mu niece turned two this past August and she has only 1 friend ๐Ÿ™ plus my 2 nephews (5 and 2) on my husbands side. My sister planned a great party complete with bouncy house/slide combo and the 3 guest-kids canceled! We felt terrible for my little niece but she ended up having a blast- had the bouncy house to herself and us grown ups took turns with her in it. Because of weight limits only 1 grown up could go in at a time with my 20 lb niece, ha ha ha ha!

  43. Julie C says:

    At least your friends paid you the common courtesy of updating their RSVP. Seems like every time we throw a birthday party we have people who RSVP that they’re coming and then never show up. Grr.. So did your kids eat the cake this year? I always put a lot of effort into making and decorating my kids’ birthday cakes and if they gave me such a lukewarm response, I would be totally bent out of shape.

  44. Ladybugtag says:

    I hate the no shows also. my gfs will cancel 2 min before a party bc thier kid is still napping! wake your kid up you have a commitment. only 2 kids showed up o my daughter’s 2nd birthday but they had a blast! forget the candy with toddlers- get a baby cage (one of those octagon gate things), fill it with balloons and abandon children inside. The party was star wars themed so Daddy had made light sabers with duct tape and plumbing insulation so the kids happily spent 2 hours hitting balloons inside the baby cage with thier light sabers.

  45. Little kids are awesomely easy to please. I wish someone could genetically engineer a teen that would be the same way.

  46. J'aime says:

    Just when I think I have read the funniest post yet you post another one . I love the children’s gigantic eyes. I think it adds to the emotion in your crappy drawings.
    You are hilarious.

  47. You must get tired of people saying “me too!” But I swear this exact same thing happened on my younger son’s first birthday. Everyone cancelled day-of. Legit reasons, but in my new-mother mind, it was tragic. I cried real tears and told my husband he “had to do something!” He asked another family and saved the day. And one of the first families did come, just w/o the mom.

    Everything is always less for T.S.O. (the second one) so I couldn’t have documented proof in the form of no birthday party guests!

  48. Katie says:

    The opposite always happens for us. We also have joint parties so go all out with all afternoon parties in the garden. MrInMotion usually sends out 50 extra invites in the week leading up to the day and tells me in a roundabout way when we are drinks shopping “oh, we are going to need three cases of champagne, not one. I’ve invited all the people who ride on my train to work…”.
    The parties are fun, but they look more like food & wine festivals the kid’s parties……

  49. M says:

    “All I ask is that you don’t bombard her guestbook with a bunch of “I’m so sorry for you!” messages because those only make people feel like shit.”

    So true. Thank you.

  50. Erin says:

    I have to say I loved the “Pirates all day long” story. Substitute Star Wars for pirates and it’s my life these days!

  51. D says:

    This is soooooooo true!!!!! why???? lol extra cake for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

  52. Dawn Robinson says:

    That usually happens to us too except for my daughter’s 3rd birthday last year where we had 35(!) kids show up (and about 20 adults. And of course I was literally OUT OF THE COUNTRY for work for a week and didn’t get home until 2 days before. I thought I did well by ordering a cute rainbow cake instead of trying to make it the night before. I get home and immediately freak out when I realize how many people RSVPed. Guess who went to Target the morning of the party to buy emergency cupcakes to supplement the expensive cake I could have made myself?

  53. Randi says:

    My little girls birthday is December 18th and last year no one showed up except the grandparents. ๐Ÿ™

  54. niki says:

    awww, we woulda come! (but in a creepy stalkish way, i have no idea WHERE in so cali you are, lol) and i even have a 2.5 and 4.5 aged kidlets ๐Ÿ™‚

  55. Amanda says:

    My daughter’s 4th Bday we paid for a party room at the bounce house and NONE of her friends came (she is December 20th). Fortunately her cousins came and we all had a blast bouncing around like maniacs! My Son’s birthday in January arrived with a freak snowstorm in TX! Luckily he was too young to notice…and Daddy saved the day by braving the icy roads to get the egg needed for a cake. This past year I spent hours decorating an elaborate My Little Pony cake for my daughter’s 7th bday only to rush to the bathroom with the stomach flu minutes after I had finished prepping the cake and party. Party had to be cancelled and the cake thrown away to avoid spreading germs. My poor girl played video games while little brother and I took turns in the bathroom vomiting. Great day eh? We were able to reschedule a few days later and I remade the entire multi leveled pony cake a second time!

    • Devan says:

      Lord, you’re a better mother than me!! I probably wouldn’t have made it once, and definitely not twice! Go mommy!

  56. Lisa says:

    Aw, stab yourself with a fork to ease the pain! Glad it all turned out great!

  57. Missy says:

    It’s our baby’s first birthday this weekend too! And then we were ambitious and decided to do his baptism on Sunday, what with everyone in town.

    Excited! But no pirates here. Which might be a good thing what with the pillaging and plundering and all.

  58. Marcy says:

    Thanks! With my M.’s bday coming, I am in secret freak out mode. We have switched schools. We can invite our small close group of friends we continue to be in touch with from that school; but it will not be as great as last year (nor do I feel like cleaning up after that many). His new school does not do neat and hippie “celebration of life” or parties in general; and i doubt inviting all the kids in his new preschool will yield many results due to geographical differences. Must find a way to make it super cool. Pronto.

  59. Claire H says:

    I’m really glad to hear that your friend Wendy is still hanging in there. I also have ‘treatable not curable’ breast cancer, and I have 2 small kids. You’re very very right to tell people not to post “poor you, I’m so sorry for you” posts, those do indeed make you feel like crap. Also people who like to tell me how inspiring I am (no I’m not), how brave I am (nope!), how they couldn’t cope like I have (was there an option to not cope? I missed that) or how I have made them appreciate their own life and good health more (go away). Tell jokes, send chocolate – much more fun ๐Ÿ™‚ . And the answer to questions on how I am is always the same – I’m still here.

  60. Claire H says:

    Oh and happy birthday to the crappy kids! It’s my son’s birthday party this weekend too. He’s going to be 8 – when did that happen?? I’m sure he’s only about 4 really.

  61. Elizabeth says:

    Must be the pirate theme- my daughter was going to have a princess/pirate party (we want the boys to have fun too!) until we found out that only one of her friends will be able to come. So I called that friends mom and told her “your daughter is the only one, you have to come!” Good news is- she’ll have fun no matter who comes..

  62. Just wanna say that I really admire the expressiveness you get in your drawings using only blob-shapes for eyes. It’s seriously impressive!

    • Devan says:

      AGREE!! I lagughed the hardest at crappy baby’s eyes when the parents are telling them that no kids are coming. (terrible to laugh at, I know, but….his eyes and the description about their shoulders slumping, I snorted…at work!) ๐Ÿ™‚

  63. Gladys Mckown says:

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  65. Vincent Brilowski says:

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