Day 213: Birthday Party Prep

This might possibly involve more planning than our wedding. 17 kids and their parents are coming to our house/backyard tomorrow for one of my boys’ 4th birthday party. It’s one of those situations where you get everything clean and in order so people have a nice orderly thing to dismantle or destroy. I mowed, weeded, cleaned the patio, blew up a gigantic kiddie pool with a slide; all so I could keep up with the Joneses.

I don’t know who they are, specifically, but I guess they were a family a long time ago who did everything awesomely and everyone around them felt like they needed to keep up. Either that, or they were in a book I embarassingly haven’t read. In this day and age of the internet, I have no excuse not to look up “Origin of the phrase keeping up with the Joneses.” …OK, apparently it all began with an old comic strip from 1913. Good, I don’t feel like an idiot. You all know what it means right? It means if your neighbor buys a Lexus, you have to get one too. If you want to really bump it up a notch, you could also keep up with the Kardashians, but I think that involves too many wax jobs for most of us.

Right, the birthday party. It’s a Backyardigans theme. That’s what you do in the suburbs. Birthday parties have themes: pirates, ummm bunnies, I don’t know – kid stuff. Don’t know what the Backyardigans are? Here’s a visual aid:

Still don’t know what they are? Me neither. I think it’s a blue penguin, orange moose, yellow hippo, purple kangaroo (I think) and a pink freak of nature. These animals are all really good friends and they hang out in the back yard and go on imaginary adventures. In one episode they go to Mars. In another they go to the center of the earth. You get the picture. We have a Backyardigans banner and napkins and plates. The whole deal. He’ll go berserk. So will his younger brother who hums the song all the time. Is this making you feel like my kids watch too much TV? Three 30 minute shows per day is the max. That’s decent, right?

We’re all running around like insane people trying to get this to go off without a hitch. I’m still dizzy from blowing up the pool as I write this. Oh, we also have a sprinkler ball. That’s a giant plastic ball that sprays water all over when you roll it around. We’re doing a temporary tattoo station and we have a bubble machine. Why is typing this making me feel like an insane person? Because I am? Thanks.

I don’t know what else to say except pray for us. It’s gonna be a ridiculously good time. I wish I could get drunk for it. I’ll give you the post mortem tomorrow.

I'm a contributing writer to Parents Magazine, GQ, Psychology Today and some others. My book, "This is Ridiculous. This is Amazing: Parenthood in 71 Lists" is available here Look for two more books in 2015: "Must. Push. Buttons (Bloomsbury Kids), and an as-of-yet untitled memoir I’ve appeared on Comedy Central’s “Live at Gotham” and “Nick Mom’s Night Out." I live in New Jersey with my wife and two sons and enjoy making them laugh more than anyone else.

5 comments On Day 213: Birthday Party Prep

  • Jason I found your blog the other nite play online after the hubby and kids went to bed.

    I'm a stay at home mom of 3 6 and 3 and 1 1/2 lol

    anyway i think your stuff is great, thanks for all the laughs i cant stop reading

    keep em coming !!!!

  • I just found your blog and these stories are THE most hilarious things I've ever read! it takes alot to make me laugh and this is so creative and so true. my husband and I have an almost 2 year old…so alot of this we totally get. SOOO f-ing funny!

  • We have found that there is NOTHING wrong with drinking during our children's ( or anyone else's) birthday parties. Hold on to the sanity, man!

  • Rachel Lambermont

    Jason you make the moms in my Mom's Group laugh on a regular basis. That's 30 other women not that you're counting…

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