Rainbows, Unicorns, and Motherhood #4: Birthdays

I love event planning. The most stressful events to plan?

My kids’ birthday parties. No joke. Those were more stressful than high-budget events, fundraising events, or events attended by hundreds of people. I wanted it to be perfect for the birthday girl, and also for the other kids, and also for the adults…

Planning for a four year old’s birthday

I’ll start by saying that those of you who throw amazingly awesome birthday parties and do so with a sincere smile on your face and joy in your heart—you are super cool! I am not one of you. If you saw me at one of my kids’ birthday parties—or even a Falcon cookout—chances are the smile was fake and I wasn’t joyful, I was overwhelmed and frustrated.

I’ll openly admit those parties were more for me than the kids. I KNEW the kiddos wouldn’t remember much of them, and they didn’t care about the food that was served or if there were decorations. I did though. I needed to think that they would think that it was a super special day and that they would look at the detail put into it and know I thought they were special. Ha!

Emma’s cake from 2018…super pretty but also expensive…

The last year or so I’ve really focused on making the events I host laid back—for those attending and for me. (COVID helped by limiting how many I could invite and what we could do) I think I finally nailed it for Graycie’s birthday party this weekend.

Kids Don’t Need Much for it to be Special…

That’s right. The elaborate stuff is usually for us anyways.

What did I do for Graycie’s outdoor birthday party? Not much. I invited three families via Facebook. I ordered pizza and a Giant-brand Frozen themed cake (I let G pick the cake theme). Chris went out and grabbed some good beers for the adults. I put some sidewalk chalk and dress up clothes out. And then…I said “yes” a bunch to the things the kids asked for.

“Can you put up a tent in the yard?”


“Can you put up another tent?”


“Can we bring the kitchen set out?”


“Can the neighborhood kids stay?”

YES! (If they wear masks)

I let G open presents whenever she wanted. I did set a time for the cake and singing Happy Birthday because we had family and friends calling in via Messenger to join in. That was pretty much it. The kids had a great time and I think the adults did too.

On her actual birthday (yesterday) the local “Buy Nothing” Facebook group did a drive-by parade for her that was amazing! But all I did for that was reach out on Facebook and then decorate a spot with her to sit and watch the parade.

I’ll be completely honest…I didn’t even wrap a gift this year. I remembered to give her our gift last night and just threw it in a bag and covered it with a cloth handkerchief.

Kid’s Party Tips for Low Stress

1-Order the food if you want to feed people

2-Remember kids really do just like to play

3-Beer helps keep parents entertained

4-Use what you have

5-Say “yes”

6-Remember it is for them, not you

7-You don’t have to spend money! You aren’t obligated to feed anyone and you’re not obligated to have cake. If you want cake/cupcakes, baking those yourself from a box is easy and super cheap. I find that cupcakes are the easiest to mess with.

Love others. Love self. Love coffee.

#coffeewithasideofcowbell #coffeeandcowbell #motherhood #birthdayparty #kids #eventplanning #drivebybirthday #covidparty

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