Party Girl

KathyDoodlebug’s birthday is coming up, which means I’m going into party-planning mode. This is one of my favorite parenting jobs, and it’s something she gets excited about, too. I love a good theme – none of her parties have been Pinterest-worthy extravaganzas, but we’ve had fun with a fairy party, a Star Wars party, a ballerina fairy party (which is totally different from a plain fairy party), and an art party.

These celebrations have all been at our house, which for me falls into the exhausting-but-worth-it zone on my personal introvert scale. I like coming up with activities, searching out cute, useful favors, and making silly party food. Yoda Soda, you guys. Need I say more?

We do a fair amount of non-birthday entertaining as well – a few times each winter we host Soup Night, which is basically what it sounds like, and for the past couple years we’ve been doing a summertime pizza and popsicles fest. Sometimes these end up being us and a few friends. Other times, we’ve had thirty people.

Maybe that doesn’t sound very introvert-y. I know it’s pretty close to iDad’s limit. But I love hosting parties because I know all the guests. There’s little danger of getting sucked into small talk when you’re hanging out with people you’ve known since college, people you see often, or a bunch of eight-year-olds. Things do tend to get chaotic and loud (I think we’re known to kids as “The house with all the instruments!”) but I try to keep the following day low-key so there’s plenty of recovery time.

None of this is to say I don’t like going to other people’s parties. I do, of course, especially if there are treats involved. Still, I tend to gravitate toward quieter/meaningful gatherings. Frat parties were not my thing. Neither were iDad’s office holiday parties – one of my favorite things about him working at home is that those are off my calendar! But a board game night or a book launch? I’m there.

This year for her birthday Doodlebug wants an art party again, and we’re thinking of having it at a paint-your-own pottery studio. I’m hoping I’ll be able to make and bring cupcakes, but I’m feeling slightly sad that I won’t get to do much beyond that. Still, I keep reminding myself that we won’t have to clean the house beforehand. I think I can deal with that!

— Kathy

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