That is all I remember from my childhood birthday parties; and from all the faded photos I’ve seen, all the kids seemed to be having a pretty good time.

Not anymore.

 Photo courtesy of @pammyleah

Photo courtesy of @pammyleah

These days, kids’ birthday parties look something more like an episode of My Super Sweet Sixteen, with bounce houses, dessert tables, and even unicorns.  Yes, unicorns.

I’ll admit it, Pinterest has me all worked up with themes, games, and ridiculous aspirations for desserts.  And who am I really trying to impress?  The three year old that is only concerned with the superhero capes and why I forgot to get Ironman (who doesn’t even WEAR a cape…)?  I don’t think so.

My secret to both hosting and attending toddler birthday parties include three simple rules.

1.  A Time Limit (and preferably not scheduled right in the middle of the day).  Ok; I really, really want my child to have a little fun of the weekends too.  Preschool is stressful, and we all deserve a day off.  But please don’t plan a party that is smack in the middle of the day.  Not only is this a bad decision for napping toddlers, but it also kind of hinders my entire day.  And lets keep the party rolling…timelines are great and objectives are even more necessary when you are trying to entertain a room full of sugar-fueled super heros.

 Photo Courtesy: @spikedseltzer

Photo Courtesy: @spikedseltzer

Jenni Drinking SpikedsSetlzer

2.  Cocktails.  Lets be honest: your Pinterest party is really for you.  So go-on…enjoy it.  I recently came across Spiked Seltzer and wonder how I ever lived without it.  It is a light, refreshing drink that tastes nothing like a sweet wine cooler or hard cider.  It tastes just like it sounds: seltzer water with a hint of flavor.  It never leaves that awful syrup aftertaste, and never leaves you with the heavy feeling of drinking a beer.  It only has 5g of sugar and 140 calories, so its a much better option than a sweet mixed drink.  And with 6% alcohol, its sure to take the edge off when you are sprayed in the face with silly string.



3.  A Sense of Humor.  Because after all, having a toddler is like running the blender with the lid off (thanks Seinfeld).  They are having the time of their lives…let them be little.  Your house will be clean again, your child will come off his sugar-high, and you’ll have memories that made all the over-analyzing worth it.

Jenni Nagle