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March 08, 2010


heidi y

Our 'craziness' goes throughout the Holidays. It starts with one of my dd's birthday in November, right before Thanksgiving. My MIL's birthday also the same week. Then my mom's bday the first week in Dec, with Christmas around the corner. Then the first week of January, soon after New Year's is my other dd's birthday. We usually held all the celebrations at our home. And we would do a 'family' birthday dinner on the actual day of our family's birthdays (dinner included our extended family), then the party with friends + family over the weekend. To pull these off someone would have to be VERY organized, and sadly that's not me. So even though we tried to have these parties go smoothly, we were also very tired during and after the parties. I would say 'we won't do this ever again', but by the time the next holidays came around, we'd do it all again - knowing it was for our children. I'd love for it to be a little simpler. Help!!


Okay, I don't know if this is what you'd have in mind...but it popped into my head and I have to get it out. Years and years ago, I worked with a gay man...we all just *knew* he was, and kind of had a don't ask, don't tell policy. Which was great, I mean, I didn't yak to him about my personal life, so he didn't need to share his with me. So he went to work in Japan for several years, and when he came back, I decided to have a big "welcome back" party. I was young, newly married, just finding my stride in decorating my home and had never had a big dinner party. So I invited 2 dozen people from work, and yikes! everybody rsvp'd they could come...we all loved our co-worker and were happy he was home. So I scrambled, cooked and cooked, spent way too much money, cleaned and cleaned and set up this great party. And. My sweet friend chose that night to "come out" to each of us, individually. He spent the whole evening taking each person aside for a little talk. Which was fine, really, and good for him. But dinner was kind of a circus because of it, and I spent the evening avoiding him, because...I *knew* and didn't feel like I needed to have this chat. So there's my silly story about a dinner party gone awry.

Staci Langford

EVERY birthday in our family is crazy. That's why I need this class to show me how to better manage celebrations!

In January we have three birthdays in two days (my twins and oldest daughter Jan. 25 & 27). In September, my husband's birthday is Sept. 24 and two days later DD #2 has a birthday (Sept. 26)...In Jan and Sept we have birthdays on the 24, 25, 26, and 27! Add in my birthday October 5 and our anniversary 6 days later to make things really crazy. I would love some ideas on how to make celebrations fun and meaningful. By the end of our two "Birthday Extravaganza Week" I end up feeling overwhelemed and partied out!

Melanie Hughes

I haven't been to any parties that haven't turned out according to plan but when I was expecting my first baby - I completely forgot to attend my best friends birthday party dinner. It was at a restaurant that had been booked for numbers and I had forgotten to charge my mobile so when everyone ph'd me to see where I was, it went straight to voicemail and therefor everyone presumed i was stuck on the underground somewhere (I lived in Ldn and this is a common occurance). they waited an hour to order before they realised I wasn't turning up. I was so embarrassed. now I'm expecting my 3rd and just forget everyone's birthday completely. I need this class.

Cindy Peterson

Well I am bummed. I can’t get either prize because I have already signed up for both classes. In fact, I have my preclass work done. But I do want to tell you about the birthday party that went wrong:
It was my granddaughter’s 3rd birthday party. My daughter had planned it all, refreshments, games, projects, location and guest list; and then ended up in the hospital giving birth to our second grandchild. She couldn’t do the party, so of course I did. We had already planned an easy party at my neighborhood park – but the wind was so bad everyone had to come to my tiny house. I was NOT prepared for the kids and their parents, nor was I prepared to lead preschoolers in their craft project and games, even with my daughter’s best friend there to help.
We all survived, and my daughter only cried a little because the party wasn’t perfect.
Now that she and the kids are older, and she has survived many more birthday parties AND breast cancer, “perfect” has a whole new meaning, and memorable can be celebrated just as much if it is because something DIDN’T turn out right as if it turned out “perfect”

Thanks for all you are doing to help me enjoy my scrapbooking. Big Picture has restored my hope and my enjoyment of this wonderful creative outlet. Until I found you all, I had just about given up.

Loine Van Pelt

Okay, so here's my crazy weekend - not exactly a party, but a party weekend with friends I hadn't seen for a long it and weep!~ (and what the story doesn't mention is that one of the friends had WAY too much to drink the first night, threw up my wonderful pulled BBQ pork dinner, has no memory of any of the evening, and swears my other friend and I are liars when we tell her what
she did!)

Now, granted, not a party, but don't you think anyone who had so many things go wrong in 3 days, including two disasters with hinges, deserves a free class? Come on, you know you agree with me!

Okay, any rate, maybe my story will bring a smile - it's all true!

My weekend with friends (or why do hinges hate me?)
Friday morning, before my friends came, I had an appointment with the audiologist to check my hearing aids. So I wouldn’t forget to take/wear them, I had them lying on the dryer next to my car keys. The last thing I did before I walked out the door was reach for them to put them on. Grabbed the right one first and put it on. Went to grab the left one and it was gone! Gone! ! Where on EARTH can it be? Hmmmmmmm – checked everything sitting on the dryer, checked the floor, brushed myself off in case it was clinging somewhere – nope, it was GONE!
At that time, the dryer stopped, and I decided to take the clothes out and fold them before I went. I pulled them into the basket and tried to shut the dryer door, and it wouldn’t shut! Hmmmm – tried again, nope, wouldn’t shut. Opened all the way and checked it out, and found that on the left hinge, there is a narrow slot next to the slider. In the narrow slot rested my hearing aid! How on earth it got there, I will never know – but in the process of getting it out, it came apart into four pieces – one of the pieces had jammed behind the hinge and I was totally unable to remove it. So I put the three remaining pieces in my pocket and went to the audiologist to tell my sad tale of woe. It is repairable, but will cost me approximately $300! And all because I didn’t want wrinkled clothes!
(Still Friday) At 6 a.m., I had prepared a pork tenderloin in the crockpot to slow cook all day until it was tender enough to pull apart. My friends arrived about 3 p.m. about the time the pork was finished. I put it in the refrigerator for a few hours until dinnertime. I have a refrigerator with glass shelves that secure into slots in the back. They are very strong, and are tempered glass so will handle things like a slow cooker dish that is hot. About 5:30 when I went to remove the dish, somehow the shelf ‘gave’…….it fell and of course, the full dish of pulled pork fell with it, onto my leg, the floor, and the dish settled on the bottom lip of the refrigerator. One of my two friends came and grabbed the shelf so I could grab the dish and get it over to the counter. When that was done, we washed the shelf and the floor and I went and changed my jeans, which were soaked with pork and juice. (Side Note – pants are ruined – front is full of greasy splotches which did not come out in the wash.)
Good news was that after the slow cooker dish was cleaned up and put back into the slow cooker shell, it warmed up just fine, and the meal was a huge success. Also, the shelf went back into the refrigerator with no harm done. I’ve never had that happen before and have no idea why it did, but I won’t be putting anything heavy on that little top shelf again!
(Saturday) The following evening my friends and I had a bake-yourself pizza. It baked to perfection and I took it out of the oven. When I tried to close the oven door, it wouldn’t close. Hmmmmmmm – wonder what that’s all about? I tried again, no luck – tried a couple more times, no luck. At this point, I’m not sure what I did, but whatever it was, the next thing I knew, I was holding a hot oven door that had come off the hinges! I knew trying to put it back on while it was hot was a fool’s errand, so I had one of my friends open the back door so I could put it on the back porch to cool. The next morning, I attempted to put it back on, one of the girls tried to help me, we followed directions and got it back on, but it wasn’t lining up correctly. Finally, later on, I called my son to the rescue. He came and had the same problem. However, my DIL was observing from a different angle and pointed out that the hinge slider was slightly bent! Yup, it sure was. My son was able to slightly straighten it, plus tighten down the screws on the housing, and got it to line up again. *sigh*…
(Monday) When I bought my Saturn VUE, a “lockout’ device was installed on it. When it is activated, even if someone should break into your car, or even if they have the key, they are unable to start the vehicle. The device literally locks out the ignition. For about 3 weeks, I had been having problems, where every time I tried to start the car, it was locked out, and I had to press the little pod and turn it green in order for the ignition to turn over. So Monday, I came in the house, threw my keys on the dryer and went about my business. A little later, I walked through the laundry room and the key pod was glowing bright red……..hmmmm – I don’t think it is supposed to do that! Just to see, I went out and tried to start the car, and I was locked out. Okay, maybe I can fix it – I got a tee-tiny Phillips screwdriver and took out the microscopic screws and took the thing apart, only to be confronted with what looks like a circuit board – and no sign of a battery. HUH? It has to be battery-operated – what am I not seeing? Okay, that didn’t work, so I really have to find the backup pod.
I know somewhere in the house is a second pod that I got when I bought the car – the question is, where is it? I looked several logical places, strip-searched the car, etc., without any luck. Tried not to panic, as I imagined calling my boss Tuesday morning and trying to explain why I couldn’t come to work – and no, this isn’t something I can call AAA for. Finally got myself calmed down and tried one more place – a bin in which I put stuff that needs to be filed – and sure enough, there it was, along with other paperwork for my vehicle. I opened the case it came in, looked at the directions, which happened to have directions for replacing the battery. When I read them and looked at the pod again, I saw that there is a battery I’ve never seen before. It is a 3V, is round, and is sized about like a nickel – maybe slightly larger. (Wonder where you go to find a replacement for that?) Okay, but the important thing is that I found the second unit. I tried it out, the battery was fine, I was able to start the car, so I put it on my keychain and was set to go. In the meantime, made a note to find a replacement battery.
(the next Friday) Someone suggested WalMart so I went there today and got the replacement. Except right now, I just checked it, and the one I got is a 2050 model, and I need a 2450 which is closer to the size of a quarter. Darn it – now I’ll have to go back to WalMart………..shoot! I HATE to go there on Saturday – but maybe I can go very early in the a.m. Darn, darn, darn!
That’s all the disasters that the week has visited on me……….today went well, except for not getting as much done as I’d hoped, so maybe the spell of electronic glitches and hinge disasters has played itself out! Way too weird for me! I’m used to being able to fix whatever might happen, and this has been very frustrating for me. I’m ready for a few days of peace and quiet!


The most stressful birthday was a surprise party for my best friend a couple months ago. Her daughters came to me on the side and asked if I'd help them pull it together. Since her kids were old enough to take on some of the tasks, I gave them guidance in what needed to happen. We communicated via email and on the aside when I was there and everything seemed to be going very well. Her kids were supposed to be spending the weekend with their father, and I coordinated a 'road trip' to a large scrapbook store and hour away to happen with us and another friend. The youngest of the two, had been trying out for a league team, but they hadn't placed her until the mid-week of the party. Then we found out the first round of games she was playing was the morning of the party! Ok... no big deal, right? First our other friend had to cancel as she was dealing with sick children, then her all of her daughters games went into overtime. I'm working with my husband, and her eldest daughter via cell to keep them apprised of the situation. Time continues ticking on and the original plan of going out of town was now nixed. Lunchtime came and went, the party was planned for 4pm and I finally got a call from her at 2pm that they were finally done. I couldn't let her come back to her house, where I was, so I told her to meet me at a local restaurant for lunch as I had been waiting for her and not yet eaten that day. Thankfully this worked - it only gave the girls, their dad, and my husband an hour and half to bake the pizzas, brownies, and decorate before the guests starting arriving. During lunch and watching the time I suggested we run to the craft store. We ran a little over, but I was trying to give them a little extra time without seeming demanding that we leave the store 'now'. All in all she had no idea, even when driving home and my sneaking calls in from the store when we split up to find an item. Would I do it again? Dunno. Was it worth it? You betcha!

Rebecca aka RScrapIT

Oh - I have been wanting to sign up for this class. I could use some help with celebrations especially. I am not good a birthday mom. I HATE planning birthday parties for my kids. It's just so extremely stressful for me not to mention exhausting. For my oldest daughter's first birthday party, I forgot to buy candles. My husband borrowed one from a neighbor. It was embarrassing! Another one of her parties, I cut the cake and served it before we sang happy brithday and blew out the candles. This year, I let her open her gifts before we sang and served cake and my dad commented on how "out of order" things were! Whatever. I love Christmas but the decorating and the shopping make me crazy. And this Christmas, we were at Grandma's Christmas Eve and it started snowing. We tried to make it home, but ended up staying in a hotel Christmas Eve night. It's hard to do "Santa" when you're in a hotel unexpectedly Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. I bought a Valentine's gift for my husband but forgot to get gifts for my daughters. Last Easter, I took all our plastic eggs to Gradndma's the Saturday before Easter and didn't get home with them and I didn't have any eggs for the "Easter Bunny" to hide. My parents went all over town shopping for eggs and finally found some confetti eggs (everything else sold out) so the "Easter Bunny" hid confetti eggs that Easter.

I think I need a class on finding my lost sanity!!!! Help!!!!!

Mel H

My craziest party was in college....where a pair of guys put my roomate and I up on a coffee table, then belted out their best Maverick and Goose rendition of You've Lost That Loving Feeling...needless to say, we were the talk of that party.

Lisa S.

My oldest daughter provides the craziness for her birthday. One year she had a cold and decided to take a nap before her party. When I woke her to get ready she was almost catatonic and completely incoherent. She didn't know who I was and couldn't even recite the alphabet. I called the ambulance and she began to "come out of it" just as they arrived. They found no reason to take her to the hospital and suggested that maybe she had a reaction to the Benedryl she had taken. (I asked them if they could possibly give me something to settle my nerves - I am shaking just writing about it). Since she seemed fine at that point, we loaded her and the cake into the car and took her to her party. Then the very next year she woke up the day of her party with a stomach bug - obviously we had to call all 25 families to cancel that party which was to take place in just a few hours. I was so happy when she decided not to have a party the past two years!!!


My craziest party hands down was a birthday party held on New Year's Eve 1999 that was a birthday/y2k/new years bash. It was actually for a friend and supposed to be at his house with his wife calling the shots. Then we had the idea that my house was bigger (which it was) and we were already doing most of the cooking at my house anyway so why not bring it over to my house. So we let loose their three kids and our two dogs (We did not have children yet) and decorated. So far so good. I had made his favorite cake with raspberry filling and about 15 minutes before the party the whole cake cracked like it was in an earthquake and basically fell apart just as I was about to go write "Happy Y2K Birthday" on it. Since he was a computer "geek" and everyone was hyped up about Y2K we figured that was a good idea. I tried to fix it but there was no fixing it. It was a surprise party too but the surprise was on us when the guest of honor arrived before his birthday guests!


2 and 1/2 years ago I was expecting our 3rd child and our oldest son was turning 8. I knew I would have plenty of time to plan his party because the baby was due 3 weeks before his birthday. Well, she decided to be late and by the time she was born it was 8 days before his birthday. Here I was just home from the hospital trying to balance 3 kids and make a special party. My poor husband did the best he could but shopping and party planning is not his forte. Anyway, we managed to pull off an army themed party for our 8 year old even though his week old sister was calling the shots!

Caroline B

Hmm my craziest party.... planned for the day before going back to uni & I had a class that started at 8am. all my uni pals thought it would b a great idea to have a few quiet ones before heading back to study and we were still going at 7am LOL needless to say we all missed our first lecture ;)


My craziest party was many years ago. Friends had formed a band and wanted a "gig" to build their reputation, I had a birthday I wanted to celebrate. We invited friends from all the different corners of our lives, I hired a local hall, and organised everything. All went surprisingly well until quite late in the night. One group of friends found the switchboard and flicked the mains switch off for fun. The band were worried that the power surge could have blown their new amps and speakers and a small fight broke out. As sensible and dutiful (and naive!) host/organiser I raced over and stepped in to calm everyone down and break up the fight before it turned ugly. When I say I stepped in I mean literally! I stepped in between the 2 main contenders, just as one of them tried to get a last punch in. A very swift way to end a fight but perhaps not the best way! They were more distraught about m sore cheek than there squabble and the night ended well.

This year one of my dearest friends and I are celebrating our combined "90th" birthday. I have a decade on her, but I'm not telling anyone - I'm happy to share it with her! ;-) But I would so appreciate the help with organising our combined birthday. It will be a great birthday bash - tho if I could win this I hope it would not be like that earlier "bash"!!


Wow! sounds like a great class!
My craziest party was my baby girl's 1st birthday...she had been so sick, so she sat there unsmiling the whole time. We had scheduled it for Saturday, had to change it to Sunday last minute (hoping she's be better), called the guests, had to pick up the cake early anyway (it looked a little worse for wear on the party day), but she wasn't any happier the day of the party. The pics are so sad...she is either looking at the camera glumly, or crying...and she is the happiest baby I know. Later that week she spent 2 days at the hospital for dehydration. I am determined to have a much better party this year! the guest of honor makes a big difference! LOL!
Amy in CA

Nancy Barnes

Ohmigosh! My craziest party was my son's 8th birthday when his party was @ 11AM and his baptism was @ 4PM. Boy, was that ever stupid!! I ran to the party store to get balloons on my way to the pizza place and was 15 minutes late to my own son's party. After the party, I had to run to Costco to get the second cake and sandwich trays and photocopy the music for the baptism and fold the programs and insert the music. Oh, yeah and I had to cut the sheets in half first! And then I started getting all of the necessities together for my son and realized he did not own one pair of white underwear!! We had to be to the church in like half an hour and I still wasn't even dressed yet. I made a massive meltdown and just sat down and cried while my cousin and my brother laughed their heads off! Everything turned out fine except the dress I bought for the occassion was too low! What a cleavage shot that was - and at church no less!

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