Every grandmother should have the opportunity to have a birthday part for their granddaughter. It brings joy to all involved, but I didn’t realize is that it also brought stress. (in a good way)
It had been about twenty or more years since I had a party for kids. My sons are grown and in their thirties. Back in the day it was very easy for me. One of my sons was born the day before Halloween, so we had a scary ghost and dunk for apples, eat the donuts off the rope line, walk through the cardboard castle, filled cooked spaghetti worms, grape eyeballs and etc. The other two sons were born in the summer, so we had outdoor scavenger hunts, big picnics at the park and always had a wonderful clown named Flutterby, who came with chicks and ducks.
My beautiful granddaughter, Claire has a birthday in December. In Washington that means you either have a party in the house, or go somewhere like Chucky Cheese. Being there is not Chucky Cheese close by, I volunteered to have it at my house. Luckily Claire had been here most of the summer and made some friends at the local Boys and Girls Club. I was worried about getting anyone to attend.
I love to entertain and usually find it quite easy; but to entertain a group of seven year olds, I was now out of my league. I asked a former student for some advice and the director of the Boys and Girls Club and we came up with a plan. I told my sons I was more worried about this than a dinner party with six courses, as it had been a long time since I had been around that many children.
So the plan came into being. The party would be Saturday morning from 10 AM till 12 PM. We would make personal pizzas, have a first floor scavenger hunt, play “Pin the Tail on the Donkey”, eat cake and ice cream and open presents. By the day before we had nine children that were going to come. I had baked a cake for the party and a cake for our more formal dinner at a restaurant. I had party favors, had ordered the donkey game online, as no one sells it anymore, and made a scavenger hunt of funny stuff.
Pizzas went well, but I did not make enough red sauce. My sons organized the lines and the cooking and getting the right pizza to the right person. My husband made Mimosas for the adults and everything actually went well. The scavenger hunt started and I realized within minutes, they did not need twenty minutes to find everything and reset the timer to five more minutes. Four of the nine found everything on the list, so there went my prizes.
Pin the tail on the donkey was next. I learned that you had to put tape on each tail, as I seemed to have forgotten and having a solid mask was sort of important. One of parents handed me tape for each one. The one that was closest to where the tail belongs got cake and ice cream first after Claire. It was her birthday and even though she did get the tail directly in the appropriate spot, we had to change the see-through blind fold.
Cake & ice cream was a breeze and even though I took the ice cream out too soon and it was pretty melted, it seemed to be eaten just fine. Only had to wipe a little off the floor and luckily had enough chocolate milk containers for all. As gifts were being opened, I thanked everyone for coming and for their gifts.
All that worry and it went quite well. Claire had such a good time, she took a two hour nap (her choice) in the afternoon and then we all went out to dinner. Then I came home and went to bed. Tired Grandma!