A and E are in a nursery with two school years in the same class of 30 something kids and according to the nursery teacher 20 of the kids have birthdays in December and January. Not wanting to have a party every day, the teacher has wisely divided the parties up so that there is one party every two weeks celebrating 4 children's birthdays each time.
A couple of weeks ago the teacher asked me if A and E would like to share a party together or celebrate separately with other kids. What to answer? I wasn't sure, so I decided to ask the girls themselves what they would like to do. I explained the situation and made it very clear and they both declared that they would like to have their party separately from each other with different children. DH was initially rather saddened that they didn't want to celebrate together but I was rather pleased that they were beginning to show signs of a tiny bit of independence from each other.
So far so good and the conversation continued with parties, presents and cakes until last Friday when the teacher informed me that the first party would be this coming Wednesday and which of the girls wanted their party first? I looked at the girls and asked them who wanted their party on Wednesday. Without so much as a thought, E jumped up and down and declared that she wanted her party this week. A seemed to be in agreement that this would be ok and so it was decided.
The excitement continued and chatter turned to the first nursery party and E has spent the whole weekend telling everyone that her party is going to be on Wednesday to which A replies that her party is going to be on Tuesday - no in 2 weeks time I keep reminding her.
All was going well until last night as I was putting the girls to bed and one of the other mums called to discuss who was going to bring the pizza, the cut up vegetables and the going home presents for the party. A and E were within ear-shot of the conversation. When I got off the phone I told the girls the names of the other children who are also celebrating this week. E was very happy and jumped up and down on her bed and that is when A's world fell apart. She sobbed, she screamed, she declared how unjust it all was that "it will be too long until my party." I explained how fun it will be to be the birthday sister but I'm not sure she heard me through the sobs as she eventually fell asleep. This morning, tears forgotten, there was one mention of the party which everyone seemed happy about so I am hoping all will go according to plan.
We have made our decision for this year to have seperate parties in nursery and we will wait and see how it works. And once the nursery parties are over conversation will then turn to whether or not we will throw a small party for them at home. No doubt there will be more conversation about cakes and presents but one thing is for sure - any party at home will be for both of them at the same time with the same food and the same friends!
Updates to follow.....