Do "Big Boys" Want Big Birthday Parties?

Kaden is turning ten. Count with me on your fingers...well you do it...I'm typing.

I can hardly believe it's almost been a decade since his dad and I waited impatiently for his arrival. Kaden was eager to make his debut as well, considering the four weeks he shaved off of his due date. I was a bit apprehensive about him having to share a birthday with all the holiday and Christmas festivities in the month of December. But as it turns out, having a child born close to Christmas has made planning a birthday party even more special.

I can recall most of Kaden's birthday parties. They went a little something like this:

1st year - We rented a space at a local community hall. We had a ball pit, crafts, food, and a bunch of family. Kaden actually started walking on this very day. It was a special time. He got his first ride-on toy.

2nd year - His aunts and I pulled an all-nighter trying to turn the dining room into an under the sea adventure to mimic "Finding Nemo". It was brilliant. We covered the windows in blue Saran Wrap, draped a net from the ceiling, and cut-out little fish to finish off the decor. And what a bummer, no one took a picture.

3rd, 4th and 5th year- It gets a little blurred around these years. I'm not sure what happened, but I can't seem to remember what we did these years. They may have been low-key birthdays. Nonetheless, I'm quite sure we did something.

Check out that phone on my hip. I remember the day was nice, so we went outside to bust the pinata.
6th year- Winter the house. I spent the entire day stapling individual pieces of shiny, silver tissue paper to the walls. I wanted to give the illusion that the boys were inside of a real-life snow globe. I added lights for extra fun. The boys watched movies, ate popcorn, and fought to stay awake. We also made personalized t-shirts and holiday photo frames for the children to take home to their parents.

7th year- We were lucky enough to take Kaden and four of his cousins to see the Harlem Globetrotters perform. We had such a blast taking pictures with a few of the players and watching them perform stunts. After the game, we went back to the house and the boys played the entire night.  

8th year - Campfire, baby! It was another sleepover with his cousins, but with the weather was so nice in December, we were able to take things outdoors. We roasted marshmallows and made S'mores around a fire pit. We also created crafts. The boys watched movies and played the night away.

9th year - We kept it simple. Cake and ice cream at home with the family. This was a rough year for us, so we didn't want to go overboard with a birthday party. Besides, Kaden's wish list was over-the-top. It was his most expensive birthday/Christmas by far. I'm embarrassed to say how much was spent on him.

This year, I came up with a bright idea to throw more grown-up party. I was excited to dive in and figure out the details. I started looking up invites and scoping out venues. Then, I came to my senses.

For one, we can't afford it. And two, there's no reason to go all crazy for a birthday party. Spending more does not make a party better. It just makes it expensive. We're going to keep it simple this year and make it about Kaden.

We attended ICE! last year at Gaylord National
Thanks to Washington Flyer, Kaden and a friend will:
  • Spend two nights at the Gaylord National Resort
  • Visit ICE! with an early admission time (this year’s theme is Merry Madagascar with its infamous penguins and attractions carved from two million pounds of colorful ice)
  • Dine on the ShrekFeast interactive character meal
  • Attend a Meet and Greet with the characters and a DreamWorks-themed scavenger hunt
This is perfect birthday celebration. Even though we'll be close to home, it will be a nice two days of relaxation before Christmas. Kaden just wants to go swimming. Go figure!

I'm not sure what each year will bring as he gets older. I have a feeling the parties will become less extravagant, but the gifts will be more pricey. Either way, I'll find it hard to believe that my little baby, who is now a big boy, will soon be a young man.

No way am I celebrating that. Hold me!

Disclosure Information
We will receive complimentary accommodations, as well as participation in other events thanks to Gaylord National Resort and Washington Flyer. There was no compensation for writing this post. The opinions and views are my own.  

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