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Competitive birthday parties: tell us your worst!

(96 Posts)
HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 03-Jun-09 15:21:34

Hello. Justine's going to be on the BBC World Service tomorrow talking about children's birthday parties - and how some parents do seem to like to outdo each other on the all-singing, all-entertainer-ing, all-super-luxury-party-bagging front.

So, we were wondering... Have you ever felt other parents were judging your efforts on the birthday-party front?

And what's the worst example of party oneupmumship you've seen?

Laquitar Wed 03-Jun-09 15:51:40

I went to a 1st bday party in Hamstead. Family super-rich , living in 2.5 m house but 'oh we are very hippies' hmm. (this is my big time pet hate btw).

Anyway we ate plenty raw carrot to last us a year and we drunk plenty warm water with lemon 'to clean our systems', and all the talk was around tufu and seagrass. No birthday cake angry.

After she blew the caddle which was on a dodgy looking piece of something made of wheat-free, sugar-free, dairy, free, eggs free, taste free,...whatever..then the yoga tutor came in and the babies had yoga session hmm.

Never again!1 grin

muffle Wed 03-Jun-09 16:34:58

Laquitar! Hilarious post

I don't do big parties, or not yet, DS doesn't seem bothered - so all the ones I've been to have involved more entertainers and party-baggage than ours. My party method is to ply the adults with plenty of wine and cake and throw all the children into the garden for a water fight. My own concession to party effort is I do like to make nice food and a novelty cake that gets some oohs and aahs. So maybe I'm the show-off but I don't care.

Ripeberry Wed 03-Jun-09 16:38:54

Laquitar, that's scary and for a 1st birthday party!
The worst one so far was last year. Same thing almost as you, rich familly who have their own moat and the theme for the pary (7yr olds) was a princess and pirates party, complete with rafts and little rowing boats (i'm NOT kidding by the way).
The kids were all kitted out in lifjackets but not many children wanted to go in as the water was quite cold !
Also, we only had sausages and smoothies as the children are not allowed any sweets or puddings, not because of allergies but because they may get too many E-numbers.
I do notice that people who describe themselves as 'hippies' are always quite well off.
If they were real they would have nothing.

SuperWasher Wed 03-Jun-09 17:00:18

The worst I have heard is my friend's dd was invited to a pirate themed party and she took another friend along (who was invited) and the friend wasn't allowed in because her outfit wasn't pirate themed enough shock angry

I'm a bit like muffle, most people I know seem to do the whole entertainer & games thing but I prefer to get friends over to our house (ours and dc's), provide food and drink (alcohol for grown ups if they want it), let the kids all play together while the adults relax, chat and drink. I may have to change this as the dc get older though...

ReginaCovington Wed 03-Jun-09 17:01:40

i dont seemto know peopel who are ££ enough for htis

muffle Wed 03-Jun-09 17:05:31

OMG superwasher at the door policy! Talk about missing the point...

Fimbo Wed 03-Jun-09 17:18:46

Ds was at one last year, the mum must have invited every person her son had even glance at. There were so many children that even the entertainer lost it on musical chairs. It took half an hour to hand out the party bags.

Fimbo Wed 03-Jun-09 17:21:02

Oh and we went to another one, where the children had normal sausage on sticks, crisps etc, whilst the adults had sandwich platters from Waitrose catering.

lilolilmanchester Wed 03-Jun-09 17:33:30

DD went to a party for a 10 year old friend. Stretch limo; bowling; cinema; restaurant for lunch. Would love to know what she'll have for her 18th/21st!

LynetteScavo Wed 03-Jun-09 17:36:23

Oh God - you've been to one of my parties haven't you Fimbo! blush

Fimbo Wed 03-Jun-09 17:41:20

Lol you've been outted! grin

NeedaNewName Wed 03-Jun-09 17:43:39

I used to be a nanny and for one boys 4th party he had batman arrive in his batmobile, all the kids had a turn in the batmobile going for a quick drive with batman, and for those who were waiting their turn, there was another entertainer to keep them happy. The cake was from Jane Asher - I always wondered what they'd do for his 18th!

But I think another party outdid that one, it was a friend of one of the childrne on the same family, a 1 yr olds party, I don;t know if the party itself was extravagant byut the party bag was from Tiffanys!!!!!!

I kid you not!

LynetteScavo Wed 03-Jun-09 17:49:19

Oh oh oh! I want the Batmobile at DSs next party...off to google!

Coolmama Wed 03-Jun-09 17:54:02

a friend's daughter had her 5th birthday - the invite came with directions to the house and........helicopter landing co-ordinates - ^WTF emoticon here^

NeedaNewName Wed 03-Jun-09 17:54:47

He was excellent and the batmobile was fab, DH (who was videoing the party - don;t ask) and I also got to have a go and it was fab - the look on (mainly) adults faces as we drove round the park was a picture.

We got him through a party organisers in North London, I will put more info on here later if I can rememeber!

Hulababy Wed 03-Jun-09 17:57:55

Oh dear, you mean you don't turn up to parties in your helicoptor? Shucks, have I made a faux pas using mine too often maybe? Maybe we will wal to Brownies tonight then, rather than landing in the playing field next door.

LynetteScavo Wed 03-Jun-09 18:00:00

I'm PMSL at heli co-ordiates!

OK, so they may have a landing pad - but really - how many helicopters can land at one time? (Or did they live in Batersea, which is cheating)

Coolmama Wed 03-Jun-09 18:03:04

probably just winched the kiddies straight into the decorated marquee and then winched them all back up again at the end - never mind mum beeping at the gate, the pilot does a flyby instead!

BonsoirAnna Wed 03-Jun-09 18:05:59

DD was invited to a birthday party last September by twin girls celebrating their fourth birthday together. The twins had been in separate classes at DD's school the previous year and had invited all 15 children in each class, plus parents; they had also invited all 30 children in their new class and new school (because they had changed) plus parents.

The mother had hired rooms at the Pré Catelan in the Bois de Boulogne - one room for the children with entertainers, mini tables, loads of nannies (young and beautiful ones) dressed as fairies, a massive cake with photos of the girls. Parents had tea and cakes in a separate room. The pile of presents needed a van to drive it away.

Of course, no-one can compete! So it didn't cause anything but amusement among the guests. And the parents had a very nice, civilised afternoon chatting and being served tea!

ReginaCovington Wed 03-Jun-09 18:21:23

are we supposed to knwo wtf the precatalan is

LynetteScavo Wed 03-Jun-09 18:31:13

My friend is a nanny , and the Parisian family she worked for gave out 20 of these at the end of their childs party, but I'm guessing they wern't upstaging any of their friends.

LynetteScavo Wed 03-Jun-09 18:32:25

Naturelment, Regina!

BitOfFun Wed 03-Jun-09 18:34:35

BonsoirAnna, did the bouncers at the door look like this?

LynetteScavo Wed 03-Jun-09 18:41:10

I'm suspecting my spelling in French is as poor as my spelling in English!

OK, so I'm obviously the up-stager here. I'll own up now.

I admit to having Mrs Ladybird spend the afternoon in my garden face painting small children while several bubble machines churned out bubbles and the more energetic children bounced on the bouncy castle. Every thing (almost) was pink and the food was catered. All for DD's 1st birthday...and she slept though the whole thing as she was only one. grin. She did wake up in time to see me handeding out hand made fabric party bags, though. (They only took my mum a coulple of hours to produce- pink gingham for the girls and camoflage for they boys) And of course there was an abundance of pink and white helium ballons.

I wasn't actually trying to up-stage anyone, but was very, very relived to have to have survived a year with 3 DC!

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