Guest Post: Better to Give than Receive: Kids' Birthday Party Presents

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Published: 02/28/2013



We love giving special presents to our friends...even to friends that we don't know very well.  Whenever my children are invited to a birthday party, we take time to think about the child and like to get something unique.  However, the past few birthday parties that we have gone to, we never even saw the child open the present!  We end up leaving it in some bin.  If we're lucky, we will get a generic card in the mail saying "Thank you for coming to my party."  There is NO mention of our specific gift.
I remember my grandmother complaining about such a party years ago.  She was invited to a  child's birthday, and there was no present opening.  She didn't even receive a thank you card, and that is a huge no-no in her book.  At the time, I didn't even have a child, but I vowed to her that I would never to do this.  She would be proud to know that two children and twelve birthday parties later, I have kept my word!

My children open EVERY PRESENT they receive from friends at their birthday parties (except gifts from people that are not in attendance.)  I don't care if other children are bored and don't like sitting around.  We have small parties anyway, and the whole process takes 10 minutes.  Everyone will receive a PERSONALIZED thank you card within a week (okay...maybe 2 weeks tops.)

I realize that some people invite the whole class to their birthday party, or they are paying for playtime at a fun kids' place.  If I had a 90 minute party for my child at a bouncy place, I would want the time to be spent playing or jumping too, but I would never send a generic thank you card.  I wouldn't subject my guests to sitting through 25 gifts being open, but I also do not want/need 25 new toys in my house.  (Another reason I like to keep the parties small.)

What do you think?  Am I out of line?  Do you feel like you pay so much for your child's birthday party that a generic thank you card is enough, or do you forgo thank you cards all together?

Image credit:  © Mschalke | Stock Free Images & Dreamstime Stock Photos

Thanks to Micaela Williamson, AKA SuperNovaMommy for this fantastic guest post.  If you're on the Fairfax border, be sure to check out Micaela's fantastic site for even more great events to keep you and your family active and happy in Northern Virginia. You can also find SuperNovaMommy on Facebook
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