the worst. For reals, I almost called it quits there a few times, but things seem to be on the up and up. I mean, sure we still get glimpses of the old "Grumpy Gwen," but only occasionally, and I can deal with occasionally : ).
Anyways, I can't believe six years have passed. The days go slow but the years fly by when you have little kids running rampant in your house.
I have a few tips for you when planning your child's first real, awesome, amazing, invite your friends birthday party.
1- That rule about only 50% of the people you invite showing up? Not always true. Sometimes 100% show up. Which is really, really, really awesome unless you forgot to count your actual kids when shopping for the goody bags. See, while the kids were making a craft they found a note sent from Tink (her signature was even all sparkly guys!) sending them on a wild scavenger hunt, filled with laughs and giggles and squeals of delight. Until those squeals of delight turned to screams of terror and rage once the booty was found and Blaine casually threw in there "oh...uh...looks like Tink didn't bring enough treasures for Gwen and Bentley....but that's okay because we are going to go open Gwen's presents now which are WAY better than these little dinky things" MAYDAY MAYDAY *boom* there went the party - at least for our kids. See it wasn't just that their lame-o parents didn't prepare well. Tinkerbell, her perfect self, forgot them. Yeah, it was bad. So yes, over-prepare your little hearts out. And your kids need goody bags too.
2- If you are making fairy pens and the birthday girl herself is clamoring for your attention- even if three hundred kids are in line for you to help them with their pens and you are kind of having an anxiety attack thinking about all of the glitter you will be picking out of your teeth for the next month - take the time to help the birthday girl. First, preferably. Because if you don't, you may finish the craft and notice that the birthday girl is AWOL, and find her in her room, in her closet, sobbing, because you don't love her. She doesn't care about the $100 of supplies, she doesn't care about the stress of cleaning, she doesn't even care about your shortened lifespan from glitter inhalation. You simply do not love her if you do this to her. And good luck getting her out of that closet. Good luck indeed.
3- Now, for a positive note...you remember the emotional breakdown that was Bentley's dinosaur cake?
I vowed to purchase a Costco cake for the next party. But when push came to shove, I simply cannot spend money on a cake. I can't do it. Impossible. But two glimmers of hope here 1) Bentley STILL talks about how awesome his big dinosaur cake was ("it was the BIGGEST DINOSAUR CAKE I EVER SEEN"). It looked like moldy frosting mixed with cake chunk vomit, but he loved that thing. Tells everyone about it, still! and 2) Luckily I had purchased four boxes of Tink fruitsnacks for the party and there were pictures of all the fairies on the back of the box. So I cut them out, stuck them on toothpicks and stuck those toothpicks in the cupcakes and BAM, fairy cake. Total smash hit. And also, I used a cake mix and premade frosting. It was almost sacrilegious for someone who loves to bake to do that, but you know what? It was so much easier. Maybe when those little kid taste buds are refined I will spend the time to make an awesome cake, until then though I am passing the buck to my good friend Betty Crocker.
All in all the party was a success. She eventually came out of her closet. Played the games (boy howdy we let her go first in everything!), she loved the attention, loved having her friends over, loved everything. I was glad we made the effort to have a party for her while fairies are still magical. What a fleeting, sweet, awesome time of life it is!