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Friends for tea

(14 Posts)
TinyGang Sun 13-Mar-05 12:56:35

I know many mums do the 'friends to tea' thing quite regularly. One I know says she has someone round once a week; she has one child though.

We do have friends back sometimes and of course return the favour if my dd has been asked somewhere, but does anyone else, like me, not exactly relish the idea?

I have three children in total and the other two are only three years old. They're not into the tea thing just yet, but I feel it won't be long now. I'm always rushing about so much with eveything that needs to be done, the last thing I need is to ship more kids in to look after . My own play together quite nicely and enjoy each others company.

I suppose I feel a bit bad about this - some mums seem to push the social side, playdates etc to more of a degree than I can manage just now. Especially some of older dd's schoolfriends.

Do you think this matters greatly or am I socially isolating her? My dd enjoys having a friend round sometimes, but I can't sustain a regular arrangement.

Beetroot Sun 13-Mar-05 12:58:55

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Freckle Sun 13-Mar-05 13:03:52

With 3 boys all of an age where they do do the tea thing, I have to say I'm not a great fan. My 3 have school lunches, so normally would only have a light tea in the evenings. However, as many of their friends have packed lunches, I feel more or less obliged to provide a cooked meal. This normally takes the form of oven chips and something, such as chicken dippers, etc., as most children will eat that. I hate with a passion cooking lovely meals only to have them rejected. I have enough of that with my children, so I'm not going to place myself in the position where others' children can do that too.

I also find that, having friends to tea, table manners go out the window and they all get over-excited, so I spend a lot of my time getting cross and asking them to sit down and eat nicely - and that includes the guests who often have far worse manners than my children (and mine aren't perfect by any stretch of the imagination).

So, not wanting to put you off any more, but I don't think it gets any better .

TinyGang Sun 13-Mar-05 13:08:20

Thanks Beety .

I suppose what might've kicked this question off for me was just as I was trying to keep up on the 'tea' front, I've noticed that 'sleepovers' are being mentioned sometimes at school now! (Dd is 6yrs - seems a bit young, although she has not been invited to one yet)

There's just no way I could do those just now. We don't have the room for starters!

stitch Sun 13-Mar-05 13:12:06

theres no way i would let my kids go to a sleepoverr, or have one. i know kids in my ds1's class do so, but its not something i would do.
as for the tea thing, i get a bit worried that my kids dont get invited round that much, but since i have three, they tend to play together anyways

TinyGang Sun 13-Mar-05 20:31:34

Thanks for your replies. Bumping for the evening crowd. Any more wise words?

WideWebWitch Sun 13-Mar-05 20:58:25

It's up to you, only you can know how much social life at her school revolves around stuff outside school. I do invite friends to tea a lot and ds gets invited back a lot and I like it as usually ds and his friend have a lovely time, don't need a lot of supervision and I get to listen to stuff they talk about (very enlightening sometimes!) We were turned down last week, for the first time ever, by a boy whose mum told us they don't do tea invites ever since it's family time because the father works nights and it's the only time they're all togethger. But mostly I don't see it as hard work. We don't have someone every week though and sometimes I'll invite 2 at a time so then have 4 children here which is loud but it's only for a couple of hours so no problem. Can you compromise and just do it every few weeks? (I have 2 children btw, 7yo ds and 15mo dd) We have NO other out of school activities though, so maybe that's why I don't find it a chore.

Tinker Sun 13-Mar-05 21:04:21

TinyGang - I woudln't worry about it. For mothers who work, it can be a nightmare, can't do the collect from school, logistically very problematic to do so don't expect or relish lots of invites for my daughter becaus edo find reciprocating a chore. Some people do just love doing this kind of thing, don't think it hinders them socially. How old is your daughter? Could she do an after school thing - Brownies?

WestCountryLass Sun 13-Mar-05 21:04:22

Me and one of my friends alternate going round each others houses every week so we only do it twice a month at our own houses. We've been doing this since our eldest were weaned so we know each other and don't care if our houses are tips or if tea isn't up to much so its a ncie arrangment but I know what you mean, it can be a real drag if you have otheres peoples kids round and only your one pair of hands to deal with them.

rickman Sun 13-Mar-05 21:07:51

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soapbox Sun 13-Mar-05 21:10:48

I, or rather the children's nanny does quite a lot of home for tea dates. It seems to be a good way of cementing school friendships.

What I absolutely refuse to do though it the taking turns thing. You know the I can't invote x here again until my DD has been invited back to her house first.

Some parents are not in a position to always issue return invites, perhaps they are working outside the home, one girls mother is dead and dad is not too comfortable inviting girls back to the house on his own, one mum is heavily pregnant, another just had a baby etc etc etc.

The children get a free choice as to who they would like to invite over irrespective of who's turn it is.

I've also done the sleepover thing a few times now. But only for DD so far, who is the elder. It has always worked out well - even if they don't tend to get much sleep

TBH - do it if you want to, if you think it will make you feel stressed don't!

soapbox Sun 13-Mar-05 21:13:40

Rickman your house is perfectly pleasant enough and in a perfectly nice area - as I said to you after your description I was expecting far worse

But TBH if they are going to be the kind of kids and parents who end up making judgements about you because of where you live, then frankly I wouldn't bother! I really couldn't be bothered entertaining people like that!

Tinker Sun 13-Mar-05 21:14:57

Oh, the taking turns drives me mad. Am convinced one mother virtualy ignores me now because I have never invtied her child back. Seems a bit pointless when my own daughter says that she doesn't liek her and they don't play with each other!

rickman Sun 13-Mar-05 21:31:09

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