Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Party preparations

This morning, Andre reluctantly showed me a note from his teacher. It said something to the effect of:

“Andre did not bring his work a few times last week. He has been very distracted in class. I found him “daydreaming” on a few occasions and he was not able to follow instructions when doing work.”

Aiyoh, this with only 3 weeks to the final exams! This is not the first time I’ve had such feedback from his teacher and with less than two months before the school year ends, hopefully it will be the last. This teacher followed the class up from p1 to p2, so they’ve been stuck with each other for two years. I think she’ll be glad to shed him off next year.

I gave Andre a stern lecture and stressed the importance of focusing in class especially with the exams coming up. As always, when he gets a scolding from me, the corners of his mouth turn down in a very sorrowful manner and his big doe eyes fill with tears like he’s very remorseful, but in truth, I don’t know whether he retained anything that I said. Five minutes later, he’s cheerfully playing with his toys.

I know why he’s been especially distracted lately. It’s because of his birthday party tomorrow, something he has been looking forward to for the longest time. Yesterday, he told me in all seriousness, “We have to clean up the house tomorrow and put up the decorations.” (ie YOU clean up the house and YOU put up the decorations. He’s also implying that the house is a mess.)

We don’t organise birthday parties for our kids every year – it’s just too much of a hassle. But since we threw one for Lesley-Anne’s 8th birthday, it’s only fair that Andre gets one when he turns 8.

I’m just a teensy bit apprehensive about having 13 wired, hyperactive boys tearing about in our apartment. Kenneth has appointed Lesley-Anne as referee, authorising her to give the yellow card to any boy up to mischief like kicking the tv, throwing food or trying to kill the hamsters.

I have fond memories about the cosy parties I used to attend as a little girl, so I’m kind of biased against the flashy parties that kids have these days, with fancy balloon sculpting or loud magicians with their off-colour jokes. Or the ultimate cop-out – the McDonald’s party. I just feel that the genuine-ness of a wholesome home party is more meaningful than a generic, store-bought event. (This is just my personal preference!! If you’re one of those parents, I’m not judging you, honest!)

I’m just organising two games and because I’m too lazy to reinvent the wheel, they’re games that I’m recycling from Lesley-Anne’s 8th birthday party. One of them is the perennial party favourite, Pin the Tail on the Donkey. I know some of you will say "BORING". Don't be like that lah, my donkey is quite special. I drew it from a Winnie-the-Pooh comic book.

I’ve kept the drawing from Lesley-Anne’s party three years ago (funny, I could already anticipate that I would be recycling games! It’s called thinking ahead, haha). I had to recreate the tail though, I had misplaced it (somewhere in the messy house).

I try to do something different for the party takeaway as well, as I feel that the usual party packs with stationery and sweets are done so often these days that they hold little value for the kids. Tomorrow, each child will get a sticker book (we bought Ben 10, Spiderman and Kung Fu Panda, but I have a funny feeling the Ben 10 ones will run out first. That seems to be every little boy’s craze these days, Andre insisted on printing his invite cards with a Ben 10 picture.)

This afternoon, I made two batches of meringue kisses. These are super easy to make, look cute and kids (and adults) love them.

I’m putting them in tubs with a ribbon on top and each guest will get one to bring home. As you can tell, I'm no pro and it's very simple, but I’m all about the personal touch.

So we’re just about ready for the party tomorrow (oh wait, we haven’t cleaned up the house and put up the decorations…) I promise I’ll write a post on the actual event - if I survive it, of course!


Lilian said...

Looks like it's gonna be a fun party. I really loathe arranging birthday parties, so the boys never have any, feel bad lah, but we're just not very social people. Brian had a big one when he was 4 but that was cos it was combined with my best buddy's daughter, and they are really good with such things.

You drew Eeyore? What about the grey bits, are they painted? Very nice :)

About the turned-down lips, doe-eyed look, dunno why I had an image of Kenneth trying that look on you hehe.

monlim said...

eww... the look works on Andre, not on Kenneth!!

Yes, Eeyore is painted. I definitely draw better than I cook!

I too don't like organising kids parties but the kids have so much fun lah, so I compromise - only every other year. Lesley-Anne had another at p4, but it's much easier to organise for girls cos they listen to you!

Alcovelet said...

Monica, you're too hard on Andre lah- I know it's serious stuff, but he's mighty charming. Besides, you control it well by alternating the years. Wait a minute - this means it'll be PSLE year in 3 birthday parties, hmm. Your painting of Eeyore is fabulous! It really looks store bought, so I guess you're quite artistic, like Lilian. Planning for parties is ok for me - it's the going through the whole party that is totally exhausting. At least it's just once a year - have a great one tomorrow! And Happy Birthday, Andre!

monlim said...

Andre says: "Thank you auntie" and to me: "Can we put up the decorations now?" He's been bugging me all night... I will seriously consider whether I want to do parties in PSLE year!

Lilian said...

HAPPY 8TH BIRTHDAY ANDRE!! I'm sure you'll have a great time today. Try not to break anything okay? Have fun! :)

bACk in GERMANY said...

Now I know what you do when you said you preferred the indoors to the outdoors! Not only are you a baker, you also draw/paint!
Lovely kisses and Eeyore!

Yep... we like to hand out gifts with a personal touch too!
For Christmas last year, we painted tea-light holders for Bryan's and Kristin's classmates. for Valentines and Easter, it was cookies that we handed out... Oh boy... Halloween's coming up soon!

Hee... guilty! I'm one of those parents who have done a birthday party at an indoor playground. Just can't imagine how I'd host a party for a group of 5 yos in my home. Over here, parents usually bring their kids to the party and leave! I'd go mad if I had 15 5yos in my home for a party. No no no no no!

I'm sure Andre will appreciate all your effort in throwing him the biggest party of his life! Happy 8th Birthday and have a good one!

monlim said...

Cindy: organising a bday party for 5yos must be a nightmare - you are BRAVE!!

Andre says thank u to all the kind aunties. Lilian, he went, "grnnhh... ok, i'll try not to break anything"!

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