How We Had Parties Before Pinterest
Does anyone remember planning a wedding, baby shower, or birthday party without Pinterest? Yeah, me neither. What did we do before our eyes were opened to the treasure trove of recipes, game ideas, and décor suggestions that Pinterest has to offer? Did we really just sit around and make a paper list and go with the boring themed items at the local party store? These days, every party that pops has at least three elements that came from Pinterest suggestions. Did our parties just suck before Pinterest or have we become a society of people that are just continually raising the party bar?
Creating a Theme Before Pinterest
There used to be a time when every party didn’t have to have a theme. A birthday party? The theme was cake and obviously someone becoming a year older. That’s why people came. A baby shower? Obviously the theme there was “yay, babies”, but these days you can’t go to a shower, or worse, try to plan one, without someone asking what the theme is going to be. Is it going to be jungle baby safari, twinkle twinkle, or infant princesses? You better have an answer to this question too, as an unthemed party is no longer acceptable. Is Pinterest to blame or is it our competitive nature?
Think back to your eighth birthday party. Was it awesome? Do you remember every single detail about it? No! Of course, you don’t! You remember that your friends or family, or both, came, you ate cake, you opened presents, and you went to bed that night with a lot of cool, new stuff. Well nowadays, moms are spending MONTHS freaking out and planning for their two-year-old’s birthday party, literally fretting over every single detail. They cause themselves endless amounts of stress and paranoia, basically because little Jacob’s mom went crazy for his second birthday party and had a petting zoo.
Planning a party is stressful business, even before Pinterest. You have to consider a guest list, refreshments, musical stylings, and desirable location and that’s all tension inducing enough. However, now with the advent of Pinterest and it’s party planning popularity, people are ready to throw themselves off the side of a building by the day that the party actually arrives because they want to make sure that it is better than Sara’s birthday party for her fiancée. Aren’t parties supposed to be fun? So why is that mom downing a bottle of wine in the corner and yelling at all of her helpers?
One-Up the Competition, Super Mario Style
It’s because we have become a society of one-uppers. If we think someone is a good parent or had a great parenting hack idea, we have to come up with a better one. If Jenna and Terrence had a beautiful wedding with stunning decorations, ours will have to be so much better. This wasn’t a slow movement, as humans have always been competitive by nature, but Pinterest isn’t helping. Because of all the awesome ideas, we spend months going overboard for an event that will last three hours and no one will remember in six months.
This isn’t to say that your little blessing doesn’t deserve an awesome birthday celebration, complete with a balloon arch and three different cakes, but is it really necessary? There used a be a time before Pinterest when Fudgie the Whale was the best thing about a birthday party, but these days kids are leaving with goodie bags stocked to the brim with brand new toys and expensive candy. Isn’t the reward for attending a party the party itself?
Now please don’t mistake it, if you’re trying to plan an inexpensive wedding, Pinterest is an amazing resource. It was not, however, invented to make sure that suburban moms drive themselves completely crazy by the time their child’s birthday party rolls around. Your baby isn’t going to remember how cool his cake looked or the tagged food items with clever names, so cut yourself some slack and take it easy. Paper plates are fine, a store-bought sheet cake with normal wax candles are perfection, and your child’s memories will be filled with the amazing experience of having their whole family surrounding them on the day they celebrated their birth.
So What’s the Point?
Pinterest is meant to be an awesome wealth of information to help busy people find great healthy recipes. It is not created for you to one-up your neighbor/best friend/hateful frenemy. We need to stop being so extra with everything we do and start embracing the love of the family that surrounds us on the day of our special events.