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Old 01-04-2011, 08:28 AM
 
Location: In the AC
972 posts, read 2,077,986 times
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I'm sure this will start a debate. But I hope it stays in proportion to the event in question.

For the first time in years my son wants a birthday party with his neighborhood friends. He wants a nerf tag party in our backyard - easy enough. We have a ton of fun things planned in the wooded part of our yard. He invited just his 5 closest friends.

The problem is that we often have random kids from the neighborhood show up to play. We back-up to a common area between houses and these kids don't really pay attention to where other's backyards start. There have been days when there were up to a dozen kids back there that I had never seen. There are others I do know, but they are very casual friends with my kids.

Any suggestions on ways to nicely let these kids know our yard is off limits for a few hours? My son would be devestated to have to move the party inside. (My lamps would also be devestated.) Moving to a location away from home is not a possibility, unfortunately since that would solve everything.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:33 AM
 
1,933 posts, read 3,137,547 times
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Is there anyway of creating posts with some ribbon and balloons to show that a birthday party is in progress (almost like a fence to cut it off)?
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:34 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,434 posts, read 41,656,980 times
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I go with the direct approach. Put a balloon on your mailbox. That will let people know it is a planned party and any parent with any sense will tell their kid "He's having a private party. His guest list is limited and you can't go over there today"

If other kids from the back side show up gently tell them it is a private party limited to only 5 guests and they can come another time. An adult should be out there anyway. I know it will not be pleasant but kids need to know about rules and social courtesies and the sooner they learn them the better.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:46 AM
 
Location: In the AC
972 posts, read 2,077,986 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
I go with the direct approach. Put a balloon on your mailbox. That will let people know it is a planned party and any parent with any sense will tell their kid "He's having a private party. His guest list is limited and you can't go over there today"

If other kids from the back side show up gently tell them it is a private party limited to only 5 guests and they can come another time. An adult should be out there anyway. I know it will not be pleasant but kids need to know about rules and social courtesies and the sooner they learn them the better.
Oh, it would be wonderful if all the parents in our neighborhood had common sense!

I agree that telling the kids its a private party is the way to go, but honestly, I know I'll feel horrible seeing their faces when we turn them away.

The other thing I keep thinking is if we do put up balloons, isn't that like shouting we're having a party and you weren't invited?
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:48 AM
 
Location: In the AC
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Originally Posted by TheOriginalMrsX View Post
Is there anyway of creating posts with some ribbon and balloons to show that a birthday party is in progress (almost like a fence to cut it off)?
Good idea. I could also string caution tape around the trees.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Western Washington
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Originally Posted by TheOriginalMrsX View Post
Is there anyway of creating posts with some ribbon and balloons to show that a birthday party is in progress (almost like a fence to cut it off)?
I love this idea!! Good one, MrsX! OP, I know it's tough to do, but you may have to break a heart or two. A simple "Oh I'm so sorry hon, when I started making a list for invitations, I only put down the kids that are here most often. I only bought enough supplies for the kids on that list. I'm sorry, I hope your feelings aren't hurt. Maybe next time?" Good luck, no one likes to see "that" look. I hope your party turns out great!
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Old 01-04-2011, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Swisshelm Park, Pittsburgh, PA
356 posts, read 756,354 times
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Originally Posted by msm_teacher View Post
I agree that telling the kids its a private party is the way to go, but honestly, I know I'll feel horrible seeing their faces when we turn them away.
You may be surprised. I bet if you say "we are having a little birthday party right now, you can come back when we are done (after a certain time) if you want" that most kids will shrug it off and find something else to do. I agree marking your area with ribbons or tape is a great idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by beachmel View Post
A simple "Oh I'm so sorry hon, when I started making a list for invitations, I only put down the kids that are here most often. I only bought enough supplies for the kids on that list. I'm sorry, I hope your feelings aren't hurt. Maybe next time?"
IMHO - too much explanation. Keep it simple. We are doing something else right now. You can come back later.

also - I think it is wonderful that you have a communal area where lots of nighborhood kids play on a regular basis. A little awkward on this one day but probably a blessing a lot of the time.
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Old 01-04-2011, 10:13 AM
 
Location: In the AC
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Yes, we love having the area. None of the houses put up fences on purpose and normally the adjacent houses are fine with all the kids running wild in a safe place. Many of us work part time or from home, so the kids are looked after, too.

I can only hope the parents here are as reasonable as the replies have been so far. I just got off the phone with a neighbor where I was guilted into inviting her older daughter because she "wanted to help celebrate" too. She does play with the invitees but not that often so I thought we could get away with not including her. Guess not.

Another mom I work with and who lives in our neighborhood is also angling an invitation. Her son nevers comes to play here and is half the age of my son. I guess next time I'm out buying a pinata and see someone I know, I need to throw my coat over it.
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Old 01-04-2011, 10:19 AM
 
2,514 posts, read 5,168,159 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOriginalMrsX View Post
Is there anyway of creating posts with some ribbon and balloons to show that a birthday party is in progress (almost like a fence to cut it off)?
Quote:
Originally Posted by msm_teacher View Post
Good idea. I could also string caution tape around the trees.
I'd use regular party streamers to outline your property. Caution tape might draw attention to kids thinking that a crime happened.
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Old 01-04-2011, 11:05 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,434 posts, read 41,656,980 times
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isn't that what you want in the first place?
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