Birthday party gift etiquette

Just a random observations post today.

I try and observe a vague etiquette of birthday gifts for the kids parties our boys go to. My criteria are:

  • Something useful or educational or that the child really really wants (as told by their parent)
  • No junk that will break
  • No noisy toys that will make their parents hate us
  • Something fun too
  • About £10 total

However, not everyone takes that approach. In recent years the boys have received duplicate junk gifts from B&M that had lasted mere days before breaking completely.

That sounds ungrateful but it’s a total waste. We live in an age where we waste far too much. Too much just goes in the bin.

I assume its a cost thing. People don’t always have much cash so they get something cheap. I’d rather gather together all the money spent on crap toys and get one nice thing. But I’m not comfortable asking for money. It’s rude.

And so we’re caught between politeness and a pile of junk.

This wasn’t a problem with small boy until this year. Up til he was three a big group of mummy friends would club together and put in £5 each when a child’s birthday came round. Then get either a big gift from everyone or vouchers. Perfect.

And then there’s the sweets. It’s like a party, by the age of 7, is just a big exchange of sweets. The party giver sends home bags with Haribo and cake. The guests bring junk and bags of sweets. Really, we don’t need sweets thanks.

So small boy and I are off to a joint party later. Each birthday child is getting an orchard games thing and a hot wheels car that small boy chose specifically. Please, let the parents remember come next June.

I’ll stop being a judgy ungrateful cow now.

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