Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I survived Andre's birthday party!!

The title says it all.

Let me first of all, confirm what you all probably know already - organising a party for 8-year-old boys is NO JOKE. Luckily, I'm new to this so I didn't know what I was getting myself into.

It all started innocently enough, a couple of boys arrived and Andre very excitedly brought them into his bedroom where they kicked a balloon around. Then soon, more boys arrived and before you could say "boo", it degenerated into this:

Boys tumbling on each other, throwing things around while screeching and laughing at the top of their voices (including Andre, there were 13 boys in all). Worried that the neighbours might report me to the cops for disturbance of the peace, I announced that it was time for games. As mentioned, Pin the Tail on the Donkey was a game I had previously organised for Lesley-Anne's 8th birthday party, but that's where the similarity ends. Lesley-Anne's guests were mostly girls and they obediently sat down, took their turns in an orderly manner without so much as a squeak.

In today's case, it took us a full ten minutes just to get the boys to calm down and sit down in the game area. Then everyone clammered to go first (I think males have the "can't wait" gene, it carries through to adulthood).

As each boy took his turn, the others would crowd around and shout instructions like "lower!" and "to the left!" to the participant. My persistent "no helping! no helping!" fell on deaf ears. Although I must say it didn't really matter because while some boys were shouting "real" instructions, others, in an attempt to prevent their friends from winning, were trying to mislead the participant by yelling "fake" instructions. All in all, it was utter confusion and mayhem.

In an unexpected twist, the winner of the game was... Andre! I was like err... hmmm, cos we thought it wasn't quite so sporting for the host to win. So in the end we awarded two winners - Andre and Noel, seen here with his prize - an Ikea snake. He seemed pretty delighted with it.

The second game was called "Mummy". The boys were divided into three teams and each team given a toilet roll. One team member was the mummy and the other team members had to use the toilet roll to "wrap" their mummy. The team with the best wrapped mummy wins.

I don't know how I even got them to understand the instructions - I was shouting at the top of my voice and still I couldn't be heard over the boys' chattering which was louder than 50 hyenas having a family gathering. One mother told me later, "I feel sorry for their teacher!" After that game was over, the boys immediately launched into a toilet paper fight. I so should have seen that coming.

Not a minute too soon, the pizza arrived and it was time for tea. Just pizza and chicken nuggets. Typical party food. You didn't think I was going to do a Rachel Ray and whip up something fancy, did you?

Then it was a 15-minute forced time-out in front of the telly, because we didn't want any unfortunate incidents arising from the combination of full bellies and hyperactivity. Tom and Jerry always works!

By this time, the boys were getting restless again and I wasn't sure I could take any more of boys bouncing off the walls, so I suggested to Kenneth that he take them downstairs. The interesting thing is that quite a few of the boys had brought their badminton rackets (without any instigation on Andre's part). This would never have occured to me, that you bring a badminton racket to a party. But it backs up my belief that boys tend to go for the activity rather than the social aspect of an event.

So they happily went downstairs and apparently had a great time (I wouldn't know, I had collapsed into a chair).

Here's the gang.

When they came back upstairs, it was time for the cake-cutting. The cake is from Coffee Bean, it's a fabulous military theme with mini toy tanks and chocolate sticks as canons. We like to order our birthday cakes from Coffee Bean, they make terrific kids' cakes that taste scrumptious and don't cost a bomb.

Here's a family shot.

With a belly full of cake, it was finally just time to chill until the parents came to pick up their kids. Here's Andre with some of his pals. Lilian, the boy in orange on the left is Kelvin Koh's son, Nicky.

The boy in the left bottom pic is Andre's best friend, Paul.

So the party was tough on us parents but Andre enjoyed himself thoroughly and even though I can't speak for them, I think so did most of the other kids. I'm happy to report that 1) he's not getting another party next year, and 2) nobody broke anything.

Here he is with a mountain of presents. Happy birthday, Andre!


Alcovelet said...

Hi Monica, looks like the kids had great fun!!! I love the mummy/toilet roll game - definitely stealing this idea! And as for Andre's best friend. looks like he also enjoys hamming it up. I totally understand when you and his mum get together to commiserate - RK's best friend is very similar too- totally non compliant and extremely verbal too, so we just watch and laugh when they have their verbal slinging matches!

monlim said...

Adeline: the mummy game is great cos no preparation needed and no special props, just toilet rolls!

Isn't it funny how kids always choose friends that are exactly like themselves?

Lilian said...

Hope you kept the unrolled toilet paper, reduce, reuse, recycle, remember? hehe...

I remember playing the mummy game during secondary school guides/scout campfires, was fun. And you're right, easy too.

monlim said...

How to recycle after it's been flung around in a toilet paper fight?? No unrolled paper lah, we're talking boys - caution is not a known trait...

bACk in GERMANY said...

Congratulations Mommy Monica!
You're the valiant hero!

I was so tickled when I read that some boys even attended the party armed with badminton rackets. Where were they thinking??? Though sometimes we need to thank the boys' for that foresight.... :o)

monlim said...

I know! It's really a boy thing, I never had any girl do that. One boy even brought table tennis paddles!!! (God knows where he thought he was going to play the game!)

Hsien Lei said...

Happy Birthday, Andre! Sounds like a fun party. Made me smile just reading about it. :)

eunice said...

Well done!! You survived!It sure looked like a lot of fun. Am sure all the boys enjoyed it.

Amaranth said...

Keep up the good work.

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