How Do You Unwrap?!


When I was growing up most parties consisted of the same schedule. Usually starting with playtime, followed by food and cake. It always ended with the kiddies sitting around the birthday child, anxiously awaiting for them to open the present they had brought.

My daughters 2nd birthday rolled around and Nicole and I decided to host a joint party at an indoor playground. Somewhere it was suggested not to open the birthday gifts during the party – my mouth dropped! Not open the presents? In hindsight, they made a good point. With a limited time frame for the party it was encouraged to let the kids enjoy as much time as possible at the playground.

Not long after that we attended yet another birthday, this time at a private residence. The party came to a close and while my son was handed his goodie bag and thanked for coming, he quietly asked me why the birthday boy didn’t open his presents. I could certainly hear the disappointment in his voice; after all he did spend a significant amount of time walking up and down the aisles to find that “perfect” gift.

So that got me curious if it’s becoming the “thing” to wait until after a party to open presents? I reached out to a few moms I know and here are some of their thoughts:

~ “I think for me it depends on the size of the party. If it were really large I’d say no…it takes up a lot of the party time. If it were a small party then I’d say yes. I also think age matters too. For order kids I would think their friends would be very excited to see them open the present they bought” - Mom to a 2 year old

~ “If too many presents, the kids get overloaded and some kids give more then others and some give $$, so I think opening gifts in private is better.” - Mom to 2 and 6 year old


~ “If we have time during the party to open gifts we always try to do it so that the kids can see how excited the birthday girl is to receive their gifts, that said sometimes we run out of time. “ - Mom to 6 and 10 year old

~ “Face to face communication and personal connections are becoming a way of the past. Giving and receiving a gift allows an opportunity for the parents to teach their children about manners, appreciation and grace. I believe it also gives more joy to the giver opposed to an “admission fee” type present drop off” - Mom to 3 year old

What do you think? When hosting a party, do you let your child open their gifts or wait until the guests have left? Or perhaps you’re hosting or attending parties that have completely different arrangements, such as donations or no gifts. Don’t be shy, we love hearing from you!

Until next time, keep Partying!

perfect party

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