Hmm, birthday parties.

My birthday is coming up in two weeks and I’m trying to complete the painstaking task of organising a party. Newsflash: I am not a party person. Granted, you could put me in a party scene and make me go to one and I would fit in perfectly well, and sing and dance and do whatever people normally do. But organising one is a pain in the backside. (It’s also new to me.)

The last time I had a birthday party was when I was seven years old, and my mum organised that one. There were lots of people, a lot of my family, friends, and everything in between. I had invited so many of my classmates. We hired some play equipment from the local toy library — a castle, a rocket, an ordinary play set with a slide. Teamed with our swing set, it worked pretty well and was a success.

Since then, I’ve only had small gatherings of few friends, like lunches or dinners, and just generally hanging out.

My house is too small and far out into suburbia to have a party that everyone can make it to. Seb suggested asking a friend, but I know of no one who can help me out there. He also suggested a picnic, which is a lovely idea, but I was going more for something at night. And just having a dinner isn’t enough excitement for me!

People have dress-up parties, and apparently you can never be too old for those. I don’t have any ideas, though, and most things have been done. Even then, I don’t have anything to dress up in. People have onesie parties and I don’t have one; I thought of a pyjama party but a lot of my friends just wear regular shirts and shorts for pyjamas; not all my friends are into the same fandom so I can’t do anything like Doctor Who. Last time I dressed up for anything, I just did Wednesday Addams because I had black hair dye and 75% of my wardrobe is black.

I suppose just having everyone wear my favourite colour (red) would be nice.

And then there’s the issue of food. With a house party, I suppose you can order or buy or make anything, or get people to bring their own food (and drinks). But if I were to have dinner, everyone has different preferences. Some don’t like regional cuisine or cuisine from certain countries, some have dietary requirements, and so on. I know that ultimately it’s my celebration, so I should be the last person to kick up a fuss, but I also have at least some responsibility of pleasing my guests.

Then there’s the whole who-to-invite thing. I don’t have Facebook, so I won’t be inviting everyone who is my Facebook friend. Then again, Facebook is apparently good for events, and people can RSVP as necessary… but overall, I have more control over inviting people.

James said the issue is that wherever I have my party, or dinner, or whatever, I will have to consider the amount of people coming, which means who am I going to invite? Is that everyone, even people I may not be that close to, is that everyone I just “know”?

He also had the lovely idea of a board games party but I have no idea where to have it. There’s also karaoke, but not everyone likes karaoke. There is also ice skating, but not everyone is an almost-pro figure skater like Tristan. There is also just going to a gig afterwards because I would love that, but not everyone else would.

There’s also a Mad Hatter’s tea party, but that is also a tiny bit out of the question… maybe… possibly? I mean I like tea, and I am a bit mad? 😄

Clearly I should not have left this with so little time to plan…

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Wow, I didn’t realize you’ve never actually thrown yourself a party before…even if it’s just a small gathering of friends at dinner. I threw a huge Harry Potter themed party for my 21st. It’s your birthday, do whatever you want.

The mad hatter tea party would be nice to do in a park or something of the sort. You can have dinner & then hit the bars afterward. Sydney has a crazy amazing nightlife scene & even if you’re not into nightlife, maybe your friends will still enjoy a drink or two or dancing or people watching. I know people just kind of think of it as some drunken fest of a mess, but unless you’ve done it yourself, you don’t realize how fun it actually is. I mean, I’ve been boring for years now. I haven’t done very many exciting things on the weekend. I didn’t get to go to Coachella. I didn’t get to go to any EDM festivals I wanted to. It’s been a year since I’ve been to a club & I legitimately love clubbing because I love dancing, dressing up, & having a great time with my friends. I miss it. I miss it all. I’m not going to be in my twenties forever, so that’s a lesson for you, you know? You’re not going to be in your twenties forever, so experiment. Do things you friggin would’ve never done before (dye your hair crazy colors? check.) like changing up your wardrobe, cutting your hair differently, trying new foods, trying a new sport, doing yoga (well you could honestly do this at any age), traveling to random places, clubbing. Seriously. My brother is a really laid back person, doesn’t like EDM, but went clubbing on his 21st birthday just to try new experiences. He enjoyed his time & was glad he went, but it’s not his thing. That’s okay though because he has this experience of what it was like to club this one time haha. Still trying to get him to go to Vegas though.

So for your birthday:
Pick a restaurant. Pick a really neat bar to go to afterward with live music or a really upscale but not too pricey atmosphere.

Dietary restrictions: Make sure you know who you’re inviting, who has what restrictions, & call the restaurant to make sure that they accommodate for that or have other options. If they don’t like the cuisine, tough shiz man, they can eat beforehand & just show up to support you.

Make reservations.

Tea Party:
1. Find a nice local park
2. Show up early to set up
3. Send out e-mail invites ahead of time. Do a potluck. Ask for people to bring food to the park, light sandwiches or whatever.
4. Bring cups, decorations.
5. Party games. You’ll need to bring board games, sports games, party games, whatever. Music playing in the background, just things. Lots of water too.

It’s your party, you do what tickles your fancy. It’s your day, but you can still be considerate without being paranoid!

Honestly, I have never had a party either. 😞 Maybe it’s something that I should do myself – throw a birthday party. Anyways, I love the idea of having a Mad Hatter Tea Party. I agree with Tiff – it would be perfect in a park. You could get an assortment of seats – different sizes and shapes, a table or two, and ask your guests/friends to dress up for a Mad Hatter Tea Party. Best of luck with whatever you decide to do!

First, I absolutely love the new layout. Nice color scheme ♥️

I'm pretty surprised that you haven't planned a party before. But this is going to be so exciting for you! The last part I planned was my 18th birthday (two ish years ago). 18 tends to be a big year for FIlipinos. Since I'm an only child and my parents are pretty lax about parties, I had the crazy nerve to plan a giant summer formal party that had food and entertainment. But it involved renting out a space and well, from what you're describing, your party will probably be a cozy and with your closest friends (rather than with relatives you rarely talk to and friends you've lost touch with…that was my debut but it was a ball nonetheless).

I love the idea of a board game party/Mad Hatter Tea Party! You could combine the ideas. Board games are always fun and people will stay entertained. As for food, maybe you can do little hors d'oeuvres rather than a full course meal (like cucumber sandwiches, cheese and crackers, etc). Less work on your part and they can still be filling and delicious depending on how many people choose to eat.

Whatever you choose, I can't wait to read all about it 🙃

I’ve not had a party since I was 16, and that one wasn’t great, to be honest. I did get to dress up as Lara Croft though, which I’m still pretty happy about. 😆
I don’t do parties for myself, but I enjoy planning them for other people. My sister is turning 21 this year, and I intend to throw one hell of a party, whether she wants one or not. It’s a few months away, but I have plans in place for it already. Have you thought about maybe hiring a table/booth or something in a bar or club for yourself and a few friends? A friend of mine did that a couple of years ago and it was really nice. We had the atmosphere of the place, but the intimacy of just our group in the booth. And, if we got sick of each other, we had the option to wander off around the place too.

I’ve been having birthday parties for as long as I could remember. They were always joint celebrations with my twin brother. Usually, they’d just be in my house, with the closest of our batchmates from our high school, and it would be awesome. Our last birthday was our 18th though, which is a big deal here (at least for girls). Neither my mom nor I wanted to give me a traditional debut, so I just had a semi-big 18th birthday with my brother. It was a small group of people, only the closest of our college and high school friends, but it was definitely a more fancy party than the ones we usually have.

I’m in a very different situation from yours though, because that party was probably going to be our last birthday party, at least for a while. Our college and high school friends live too far away from each other and are too different from each other in many aspects for it to be particularly easy for us to organize one party for all of them. I’m actually looking forward to celebrating my birthdays hanging out with these groups of people separately, probably over lunch or dinner the way you usually do.

Planning parties can be kind of stressful, after all. I guess I’m lucky enough that most of the people around me don’t really care about what food I serve them as long as I serve them food, because food would be stressful if any of them were particular about their diet.

The mad hatter tea party actually sounds pretty cool! And you could probably incorporate or add some of the other party ideas you were considering (board games, karaoke, some nightlife afterward) into it.

Good luck with the rest of your planning! 😄