Neal is having his ninth birthday party--right now.
I don't really do birthday parties--unless you count the BBQ/Potluck dinners with my family where we have cupcakes and celebrate all the recent family birthdays because there are always several (especially in December). I threw Neal and Amberly a "friends birthday party" when they turned five complete with party games, pinatas, balloons, favors--the whole shebang--and so I "owe" Thomas a party this September. Last year, I told Neal that we would have a birthday party with his friends for his eighth birthday but we got so busy with his baptism and the other summer events, it just didn't happen. To make it up to him, I promised we could have a party this year.
While we were talking about what kind of party Neal wanted, he said he really just wanted to play the Wii. This wasn't a surprise and turned into the easiest party ever. I told him that he and his friends could play the Wii, uninterrupted--without my usual time limits, for four hours one afternoon. He could only invite three friends (a best-cousin, a neighborhood friend, and a friend from school) because there were only four controllers. I bought pizza. They had Neal's favorite cherry Kool-Aid and cookies because he doesn't like the frosting on cupcakes.
I arranged for three of my children to spend the day with their grandparents so that they wouldn't annoy the Wii players. I put Molly down for a nap and I finished the wedding pictures for some very patient clients. And that's it. Neal is happy and I'm happy.