Well we survive Kid1’s 14th last night. After a fair amount of preparation (thanks heaps to Miss M), we were actually ready to go ahead of time – a very unusual occurrence when we entertain. And I was so proud of how our courtyard looked.
The bumblebee is Kid2.
And here she is again.
And here is Kid1, a pirating lass. Did I mention it was fancy-dress? I was so proud of how both my daughters looked as well. And of how they acted.
Though there is 3 yrs between Kid1 and Kid2, there was never any question about Kid2 attending. This is just the way it is in our family. It wasn’t until the end of the night when one of the parents mentioned their daughter would never have allowed a younger sibling to attend that I realised it could have been otherwise. Though at times there can be distinct friction between my two daughters, they are always inclusive of each other when they know they should be.
Kid1’s maturity quite astounded me during the night. The boys that attended (yes – a ‘mixed’ party) got a bit playful during the party. MotH’s term for it was ‘destructive’. The tarpaulin behind Kid1 in the first photo was torn down, and the decorations on the basketball ring ripped off. We had tried to close off the courtyard to try to trapped some warmth from the patio heater, but we had left a flap up (in the 2nd photo) so the dog had an escape route if needed. The lads found the escape route first. Having provided cans of drink for the party, the lads (and some lasses) found new entertainment by simply shaking and spraying the softdrink all over the backyard.
In stepped Kid1. Rather than telling anyone off (a socially stupid move), she simply removed all remaining cans from the outside fridge and transported them inside. When the lads starting scaling our back fence (for reasons unknown – I think perhaps ‘because it was there’), she quickly set up the table-tennis table and started a comp, with chocs for the winner. And at the end of the night, when MotH expressed some exasperation, she maturely stated ‘boys will be boys, Dad’.
The next morning, the damage really isn’t that extensive – and more importantly, none of it is permanent.
In having this party, I stated very firmly to Kid1 that this party is it. There will not be another – at home – during her high school years – i.e. no 16th, highly unlikely for an 18th. The same goes for Kid2, when it is her turn. She can have a 13th (her Year 8 party), but none after. I’m so glad we have been clear on this. This party went relatively smoothly, with some minor highjinks only. I am too scared to imagine the consequences of adding smuggled alcohol, sexually rampant teenagers and gatecrashers.
So I view this party as a huge success. Two years now until the next one for Kid2. MotH may have relaxed again by then.