I had some incredibly elaborate, themed birthday parties growing up, thanks to my parents, in particular my mother. Here are a few of the ones that stand out in my mind:
When I turned five my mother had a ballet-themed birthday party (I was doing the obligatory one-two years of dance and ballet that all little girls do between the ages of four and seven). We’d rented a room at the JCC to have plenty of space. All the girls were asked to come to the party wearing little leotards, and everyone received a tutu, a feather boa, and a tiara upon arrival. My mother had a dance teacher friend, who taught us all a little dance to what I think was a Paula Abdul song, but I might be wrong. Toward the party’s end, all the parents came back, and we performed our hastily-learned dance routine for them. Afterwards cake and ice cream happened. The cake had a ballerina on it.
I was totally over the ballerina thing a year later, and I was starting to settle into my adult likes and dislikes, so for my sixth birthday I had a ghost-themed party with ghost-themed games. This would have been a better Halloween party, but I didn’t care; my birthday was in March, and I wanted a ghost party. Everyone had to come dressed up as ghosts. Most people came in sheets, myself included, but I remember this one girl–we’ll call her Sarah K.–who was always beautiful and put together (she grew up to be beautiful and put together, and i think she might have gone to Harvard? That bitch). She showed up to my party in this elaborate, beautiful ghostly flower-girl and makeup costume and I was so jealous of her and also sort of hated her for looking better than I did at my party (I had some intense emotions for a six year old). Anyways, this party was awesome. We had a mummy-wrap toilet paper game, and this game where my mother strung our playroom with yarn, and we had to navigate it as a “spider’s web” maze. The cake was a ghost, of course. This was probably the best birthday party I ever had ever.
My tenth birthday was a beauty parlour bash. I picked eight (I think?) of my “closest” friends, and we all went to get our hair done and our nails done. My mother did all our makeup. I’m sure some people would blame women like my mother for the fact that 8 year olds wear makeup nowadays, but whatever, it was a birthday party. We then went to an ice cream shop and ordered that place’s version of a Ben and Jerry’s Vermonster–a bunch of different flavors of ice cream, and a bunch of different toppings, all piled into one mammoth bowl with lots of spoons. It was awesome. Afterwards the party a Rabbinical candidate stopped by my house–no joke. My parents were on the board of our synagogue’s Rabbi search committee, and they had to have some one-on-one with the candidate. That Rabbi was ultimately hired, and he’s still at my childhood synagogue.
My eleventh birthday party–oh boy, this one’s a doozy. It was a karaoke song bash thing, where everyone got to stand in front of everyone else and sing sons of their choice. We had lots of inflatable guitars and microphones. I remember singing a duet of “Bohemian Rhapsody” with a girl from my Hebrew School class. At one point we had a rough collision and I split my lower lip open. I powered through the rest of the song, like a boss, but promptly fled to the bathroom to dab my bloody lip as soon as the number was over.
And I believe I told you about my twelfth birthday party in a previous post.
And people wonder why I like theme and costume parties so much. Did y’all have any crazy, elaborate themed parties growing up? Please share your awesome, embarrassing memories in the comments.