Cam's (Almost) 8th Birthday Party

This past weekend we celebrated Cam's 8th birthday a few weeks early!


Planning a kid's birthday party stresses me out more than any other event. First, who to invite? School friends, church friends, their friends, your friends, the entire class? You may not know the parents well (or at all), which adds a layer of complexity. Do parents stay or go? Inside or outside? If outside, will weather be a factor and what's the backup plan? What activities/games/food? Do I pay more just to go somewhere where everything is planned for you?

I have found that kids typically enjoy (and remember) their birthday parties between ages 5-10, which is why I skipped planning a party for Cam's first four birthdays. We just had a family dinner. 

For ages 5 and 6, we had a playground party with a piñata. For age 7, Cam just wanted to invite a couple of his friends over to our house, which was super easy and I just made them Bagel Bites for lunch and they played for 2-3 hours. 

This year, Cam had been talking about having an inflatable waterslide for the past few months, which I told him wouldn't work for a November birthday, so I had squashed that idea. It wasn't until I started thinking about my "Fall Bucket List" and the plans I needed to make that I realized a waterslide party might actually be doable in late September. Cam was obviously on board with an early birthday party. 

Brian thought I should wait to have his birthday party when it's his actual birthday (the week of my due date).  I really wanted Cam to be able to have a party this year since there's a good chance he may forever share the birthday spotlight with his sister going forward and I thought it was too risky to wait. So Brian offered to plan and execute the birthday party himself in November.

Hmmm. I think we all know how that would've gone, or rather....not gone.

I waited to reserve the inflatable until the week of the party to make sure the weather would hold out. I wasn't worried about availability in late September and most of the places had very good cancellation policies, but I still thought it best to wait until the last minute. The party was set for Saturday, and as the date inched closer, the weather forecast kept looking worse due to Tropical Storm Ophelia. I looked into a mobile game truck as our backup plan, but those were actually all reserved so not a possibility. 

Late in the week, I changed the party to Sunday afternoon due to the weather, which turned out to be perfect! Everyone could still attend and the weather was amazing!

The slide was big, super fast, and provided hours of entertainment for about twenty kids! There were many wipeouts and tears, but surprisingly no broken bones or injuries, ha!  I was really pleased overall with how the party turned out. 

I'm not sure if this is a boy thing, but in typical Cam fashion, he had very little opinion on the party theme. I asked him what kind of theme/cookies/cake he wanted, and he just shrugged and said "whatever....maybe dinosaurs?" 

Granted, every birthday party so far has had the dinosaur theme and this is the same kid that has worn his T-Rex mask for six Halloweens and counting, so I truly think he just doesn't care. I, however, wanted to change it up. I've made a lot of dinosaur cookies at this point! 

I suggested a shark theme since he is into shark teeth. He shrugged and said "sure," so I went with it.

I planned the party from 3-5 PM so I wouldn't need to serve lunch or dinner. One less thing to stress about. I made cupcakes, shark jello cups, and jawsome cookies! We did a piñata, which I count as a substitute for goodie bags, since kids can just take home a bag of candy.

Cam had so much fun and I was so grateful for how the day panned out! 

I probably won't be planning this much for birthday parties for the next few years, but a splurge this year was definitely worth it. :)