"My plea for birthday parties."

Think of the parents.

I had a mini celebration last week. One of those internal whoops-of-delight when my oldest child had his birthday.

I breathed a sight of relief at the fact that the next party I had to host wasn’t until much later in the year.

In my time as birthday party dropper-offer-picker-upper-and-hoster, there are a few important lessons I have learnt and so I have put together my plea, my wish-list for parents.

1. If you are going to invite 75% of the class just invite the lot.

Seems like logic right? But it happens. Whether for cost factors, or space reasons, parents decide quite often to just leave a few of the class out. Sadly, my five-year old often bears the brunt of being the kid left out. There is nothing quite as heartbreaking as hearing your little boy ask you why no one invites him.

There really is no answer. It leaves you stumbling, grasping for answers.

If you really can’t ask them all to your party, then teach your kids not to tease the others who weren’t invited.

"It's all or nothing people." Image via iStock.

2. Say on the invitation whether I can drop off and pick up.

I just figure that by the time they are at school, and if your child is comfortable with being left, then drop off and pick up is easier for all involved. I mean, you don’t really want me hanging out making small talk in your kitchen do you?

But if it’s not okay, then just let me know ahead of time because I have two other kids to juggle, and if you aren't careful you will get ALL of us hanging out in your kitchen making small talk.

3. Tell your face painter to have a one-minute-a-face rule.

I will set the scene. A line of three-year old Elsas, fingers sticky with cake, hyped up on apple juice, itching to have their faces painted with blue icicles and sparkles.

As they fidget and fuss an elderly gentleman pushes ahead. “It’s Grandpas turn,” he roars.

As he painstakingly gets turned into a geriatric pirate a crowd of Elsas and Spidermen slowly start to lose the f*ing plot.

You might think it's amusing Pops to enter the spirit of things, but wait your turn.

Anyone over the age of 8 who wants their face painted – to the back of the line.

"Regardless of age, wait your turn." Image via iStock.

4. Have the cake half way in, some of us have other events to get to.

It's easy to get lost in the frivolity and fun of serving jelly cups to tiny tots, but I think it's fair on all involved to have the cake at the hour-and-a-half mark, that way those of us who have to press on can get out.

Those who wish to stay can knock back pink lemonade like there is no tomorrow.

5. If you say siblings can come, have a party bag for them too, even just a small one.

I understand you not having them for all the ring-ins who turn up uninvited but if the invitation says siblings welcome, a small lolly bag for these siblings allowed to attend saves us parents hours of heart ache on the drive home.

6. Don’t push your food issues onto my kids.

The vegan-only-dairy-free-sugar-free-flour-free treats only taste good to the ants. Sorry.

It’s called a party – not a health retreat. It is for celebrating. Fruit is great, allergies – sure cater for them. But those of you in the camel milk brigade should realise your dietary preferences are in the minority.


Cater for the crowd.

"Have the cake in the middle, some of us have places to go to." Image via iStock.

7. Ditch the “don't bring gifts” we are going to bring them anyway.

It’s a noble thought but we actually want to buy your kid a gift because we like them, that’s why we are coming.

What plea do you have to parents for their child’s birthday party?

Want more? Try:

$100,000 kid’s birthday parties are here. Sorry.

“Don’t judge me, but… I threw my child’s birthday on a school night.”