A Princess Party

United States
September 25, 2007 6:36am CST
My nephew has a 3-year old daughter who will soon be turning four. He and his wife usually have a huge party for her to celebrate her birthday. They rent a hall and decorate it to the max, order pizzas, have a pinata, games, loot bags, and the kids love it! This year they gave her 2 choices. A "Build a Bear" party or a "Princess Party". She chose the "Princess Party". He went on to explain what the party detailed. The girls would be pampered, have make-up applied, dress up like princesses, and have cake and ice cream. The cost was only $35 per person, which was about the same price for the "Build a Bear" party. My eyebrows raised when he told me how much it would cost. He chuckled, shrugged his shoulders and said, "oh well, that is what she wanted." I was thinking to myself as he left me standing with my mouth wide open, still in shock, "What will she want for a party when she is sixteen?" Now comes the question, how much is too much to spend on a party for a 4-year old child? I say, have a party with a bunch of family and friends present, have cake, ice cream, a couple of games, and grab bags.
10 people like this
23 responses
@Debs_place (10551)
• United States
25 Sep 07
It sounds like the little princess is spoiled. They could buy some stuff and do the samething at home for 1/2 the price. And you are right, what will she want for sweet 16, there was a show on TV I saw a few years ago where people were talking 10s of thousands for sweet 16 parties. Explain to me...where does that go for a wedding then. You are right ...way too much, too soon.
3 people like this
@laydee (12818)
• Philippines
28 Sep 07
I agree. The little girl wouldn't even remember that when she's older. They're just making her a little more spoiled. I think they're wasting their money on unnecessary things. Instead of doing parties, they should at least save half (if they really want parties) for her future. If the kid is spoiled what would happen to her when her parents are gone. You know what I mean? =)
1 person likes this
@maribea (2366)
• Italy
26 Sep 07
I am with you against spending too much money on celebrations that should be kept simple and familiar..I think children can enjoy themselves with little and the funniest thing is decorating things together or playing all together..Unfortunately nowadays adult seem to forget that they were children too and sometimes cannot remember how to play with their children and prefer paying other people for doing this ...Of course this is only my opinion, the opinion of a girl who loved cooking with her grandmother and who considered it a wonderful time the rare occasions in which her mother had time to play with her. I loved simple things as a child and today it is the same. But if you see it from their point of view there is no money you would not pay for your child..however I am still the one stupid and romantic girl who says that the most important things are the one no money can buy!
@subha12 (18472)
• India
26 Sep 07
I think its too much. Its good to make the child feel special. But this too much pampering at last make the child spoilt. One must think there are so many little chidren of the age of their own children, who live on streets, don't have shelter also. They don't get food. A rich child should be brought up well but not spoit to this extent.
3 people like this
• United States
26 Sep 07
Princess Party - It is much different if it is a sweet 16 party. I am sure at her age, she would be just as happy spending her birthday at home with her family and friends with a princess setting. Im sure the parents just want their child to have a great time, but there are limits. I think at her age that type of party wasnt necessary.
It is much different if it is a sweet 16 party. I am sure at her age, she would be just as happy spending her birthday at home with her family and friends with a princess setting. Im sure the parents just want their child to have a great time, but there are limits. I think at her age that type of party wasnt necessary.
@meaculpa (339)
• Philippines
26 Sep 07
One has to set a budget for this occasion. The party should be simple, memorable, all visitors will enjoy, enough food.
• United States
26 Sep 07
Yes, today's kiddie parties can be very expensive. $35 per kid seems like a lot fo 4 year olds, though. I hope she's only having about 5 friends over for that!! They could get a lot more for their money if they did the usual family pizza party!
3 people like this
@Polly1 (12652)
• United States
25 Sep 07
That is way too much to spend for a birthday party. They are going to create a spoiled brat. I am with you on the kind of birthday party. Friends, family, ice cream and cake, some games, prizes and some goody bags. Thats what I call a kids party.
3 people like this
@Shaun72 (15970)
• Palatka, Florida
25 Sep 07
I am glad my little 5 year old niece hasn't heard of this or wanted to do it. Her last birthday was with her family her 3 half sisters and her brother. I can't wait to see how the pictures came out. I was there and took a few.
@Thoroughrob (11771)
• United States
25 Sep 07
In my opinion, that is way too much. I am like you a party with family and friends. I am sure the party will be a hit, but she would be just as happy getting to play with friends.
3 people like this
@sunshinecup (7882)
25 Sep 07
Ok I use to be against the idea of parents spending so much on their kids Birthday parties. Then after I had children of my own, I learned the parties isn't near as much as for the child as it is for our own inner child, LOL. We haven't spent as much money on our children's parties, not due to lack of wanting, but lack of money. We have spent many hours getting it ready, sometimes days even though by hand making all the decorations as well as the games and food. Yes the goal is to tickle the snot right out of our kids by giving them what they want, but just as much for us to have the party we never had as a kid. Not saying our childhood was sucky, but that there were things we as children dreamt of that never came to be. I reckon it’s a living through our children sort of thing. So now when I see or hear of parents going to this extent like paying the cost of $35.00 per person for a 4 year old’s party, I just smile and go on. Sure there is the threat that this kind of catering could ruin a perfectly good child, but I think if it’s limited to special occasions such as a Birthday, it won’t hurt them. You know? Now if this was a life style where everyday it was a norm, “what ever Jr. wants Jr gets”, well then, yeah that child will have a rude awakening when he gets out here on his own. At that the parents did a disservice for the child. *Chuckle*, however there is NO fear of that happening to my kids, reckon that's where I am lucky to be so broke. :oD
3 people like this
• United States
25 Sep 07
boy, this is a sticky question lol. Personally, I feel that such an expense as you describe is way too much. At 4 she is far too young to appreciate the cost. She'd be just as happy with these same things done at home, dollar store makeup and fancy clothes easily found at Walmart or old grownup clothes from the thrift store. She is only four. I think a lot of times such parties as this are more for the parents than the kids. The reasons may be many, from a need they did not have filled in their own childhood to simply showing off the fact that they can afford such things. And yes, he can probably look forward to having a spoiled princess on his hands whose demands will only grow as she does. And she is learning from him that love=money. She could easily grow to be one of those people who only value others who can give material things to them. My own fouurth birthday was great. And I guess it was what would be called today a princess party. My mom made us up, we dressed in clothes from her closet, and ate our ice cream and cake with our hands behind our backs, a very messy and kid friendly affair which I still recall now, 48 years later. The best thing was that she took the day off work and spent the entire day with me, for 24 hours, except for the time of the party, she and I did whatever I wanted to do. She did this every year for each of us three kids until we turned 18. When we sit now and recall our happiest times, this gift always comes up and is a precious thing to all of us.
3 people like this
@violeta_va (4842)
• Australia
25 Sep 07
Well if they can afford it than hey why not its their money. If I had the money I would do the same and make his 1 special day more special. Even simple parties do cost a lot when you take into account cake, candels, baloons, party bags, food, drinks and all the rest you will spend a lot. The 4 year old has just starting to make friends so you cant say yes she can come and he cant it is important to them to be invited. That is a time when they start school and friends mean a lot.
3 people like this
26 Sep 07
Good grief, how spoilt is that child. Honestly, at that age this little girl would probably be just as happy with a few friends, some simple party foods, some music playing and some games. I tend to feel that these extravagent parties for little kids are nothing more than a way for the parents to show off and indulge in oneupmanship, and the cost is far too high. I agree with you hun, simple is best
2 people like this
@Lovett (465)
• India
26 Sep 07
Hey, it is too much. I mean the child is only 3. SHe doesnt even know how expensive this party is. The child may get spoiled as she grows up, if her needs are addressed this way! I appreciate the fact that they r trying to make her happy, but this wayyy too much.You are very correct in saying that the party wtih a bunch of family and friends, n cake, icecream, games, n grab bags, seems to be decent , n fitting the budget as well. Also they could use this money, insted of hypering the birthdayparty,to donate the poor , n the needy, this way the child will receieve blesings as well .My dad was always against celebrating brthdays in extravaganzas, n always wanted usto donate money or food tp the poor. He said that the people who come for the party have all they need n are satsfied with their basic needs, n it isfruitless to feed such people, instead include the needy in your celebrations, n God will bless you!
2 people like this
@anniepa (25218)
• United States
26 Sep 07
The party you described sounds like what I'd have too! I hate to say this since it's your nephew but I think when parents have a lavish party like this for such a young child it's the other adults they're trying to impress rather than giving the child a fun time. Sure, when a little girl is given choices like that she's going to want something like a "Princess Party", but if she were just told she was going to have some of her little friends and her family come and have cake and ice cream and maybe some chips or whatever she'd still be tickled pink! What will be left by the time she reaches "Sweet 16"? Annie
2 people like this
@MsTickle (24732)
• Australia
25 Sep 07
I think 435 each for 4 yr olds is ruddy ridiculous....how stoopid...sorry, no offence. Kids get given too much these days...they don't appreciate it and they justy expect more and more. Parents are making a rod for their own back. Are we losing the plot?
@crazed_moma (1054)
• United States
25 Sep 07
Wow I'm with you Elusive! My twins did get to go to build a bear for their last birthday but it was just them and that was their gift from me and hubby. We did a small party, a bbq with friends, family and cake later on in the day. I could see spending that much for my daughter's sweet 16 but not for a 4th birthday party!
2 people like this
@worldwise1 (14892)
• United States
25 Sep 07
All I can say after reading that, Elusive, is, "Yikes!" I am assuming that the parents of this child are not independently wealthy. I really do believe that parents can go too far when it comes to indulging their children. As you stated, a nice gathering with family and friends, games, a few prizes, cake and ice cream would be sufficient. This type of situation truly leads to kids growing up with a sense of entitlement to everything they want in life. It is unreasonable, because hardly anyone ever gets everything they want in life. I just think it teaches kids to be greedy and superficial in life.
@writersedge (22579)
• United States
27 Sep 07
I agree with you, spoiling a child that much that young, what WILL she expect at 16? Sounds like they have lots of money. So at 16, she'll get a car, not a second hand one, but probably a sports car or something expensive. The problem is that I have taught many students who get whatever they want no matter how expensive and I've been on jobs with them. Motivation is lacking. Many just think their parents will continue to foot the bill. You have to hope that the family continues to have lots of money, what happens if they end up poor one year or more?
@GardenGerty (81476)
• Marion, Kansas
27 Sep 07
Lol! I could probably have a party for several four year olds, have lots of fun, be much more creative, and not spend much more than thirty five dollars. Of course that does not count the cost of a special present. I think we give our kids so much that when the next event does not top the previous one the children are disappointed. How sad, because then it gets harder and harder to find satisfaction.