Saturday, March 15, 2008


We spent a good chunk of the day at a birthday party for a friend.

I love birthdays. I especially love it when people have creative parties.

My favorite recent party was at Tilden Park. The kids ran and played. There was a huge pile of dress-up clothes in the middle of a grassy area and the kids had stars in their eyes, imaginative play big time.

During today's party, I heard the comment, "It's just non-stop parties" and of course, I had to start calculating...

The average kid has 20 potential friends in his own class, plus 10 more from other classrooms that they meet and friendship on the playground or in after-school classes. For mine, there is another social group of 10 more. Friends from previous classes 15 more (T-ball, karate, orchestra). Then there are a few stragglers, friends from previous years, 15 more. Then a few friends who tag along because parents know each other and the kids get to play when parents are together, about 10 more. Finally, if they have siblings that are close in age, then they get invited to sib's friend's parties, 10 more (but usually more).

So, for the average child, there are about 90 parties per year, usually on weekends, so about 1.73 parties per weekend. Thank goodness parents usually get creative in when, where, and how to throw the party.

I was sitting there, calculating this while the cake's candles were being lit and the song was being sung at today's birthday party. It's relaxing to casually calculate something in the back of my mind while something else is going on. I was thinking, "1.73, that's doable, not so bad."

Unfortunately, right as the candles were being blown out, I remembered, "Oh crud, I have FOUR kids. Times FOUR."

No wonder!