I love a good birthday – the slew of bizarre presents, the Facebook messages from people you can’t remember befriending and, of course, the onslaught of Percy Pigs. All that’s great – if it’s your own. And I’d actually say, sorting out a mate’s birthday is pretty rewarding because they have the gift of articulation and you generally get an epic tome of an email saying how great you are at the end of it.
But the urchin’s birthday? It’s stumped me. I’m a giver by nature – unless it comes to salt and vinegar Squares – and a lover of bunting, so it would figure that I’d be all over this second birthday like Don Draper to a whiskey cabinet. And I love the urchin more than myself – a surprising revelation to my sister.
But I feel dreadful for revealing it; I don’t want to play this year. I don’t want to open up the house to a troupe of toddlers and parents I barely know looking for an E-colour-fuelled, Cath Kidston-themed ride. (And to judge my party/eye/fun bags).
I think The First Birthday (TFB) was such a gargantuan effort (think hand-made, iced ladybug cake, elderflower and mint caiprinhas, Ginger Pig sausage rolls – even remembering it kick-starts the eye twitch) that I’m spent. And we’re in year one. Just another potential 17 to go.
So my compromise this year has been to invite people to The Eagle – a parent-friendly pub that has the perfect combination of parenting, pints and par-tay atmosphere. In a bid to try and secure some bricks and mortar in London, we’re not looking to splash cash on a shindig that’ll win accolades on Instagram and leave us under a bridge, drinking meths from a brown paper bag.
I’m sure I’ll get my party mojo back next year, but for now we’re just heading to ‘t pub. Bad parents? Maybe. Will she remember? Probably not.