Buying Teenagers Birthday Gifts

I swear Kid #1 and Kid #2 spend half their day trying to figure out how to drive me insane. Kid #1 turned 15 on July 31. Kid #2 turns 14 on August 11. Because their birthdays are less than 2 weeks apart, we have always been forced to do a combined party for them. We simply cannot get most of our family members to show up at our house 2 weekends in a row or the weekend after the 31st and the weekend after the 11th. It just doesn’t work for their schedules.

Understandably, the girls hate it. They have for a couple years now. I feel their pain. I am a twin after all. I shared every birthday party. They asked last year if they could have separate parties. After speaking with various key family members (Mom, Dad, Step-Mom, brother & SIL, grandparents), we had to tell them that it wasn’t likely. So both of them decided they didn’t want a party then. More specifically Kid #1 said she doesn’t want a party so Kid #2 is saying the same thing now. Real mature there kiddos.

Needless to say, they are getting a party whether they want it or not. It is a mostly family only party anyways. The girls are allowed to invite a friend or two but no large groups of kids. After last year’s debacle, that won’t be happening again for a couple years. *I’ll come back to that at the end of this post.

I posted a few weeks ago a couple of the gifts I got the kids: face masks (15 each) and a makeup brush set for each and a $20-ish squat pad for Kid #1. I needed to find an equal gift for Kid #2. I also picked up hair ties, socks, and deodorant. I still need to pick up some other staples… toothbrushes, toothpaste, bobby pins, lip balm, and some snack stuff. I am going to get all of that this week.

Mom knew I got this stuff from Amazon. She didn’t ask about the price of Kid #1’s gift yet she went ahead and let Kid #2 pick out a gift. She ended up picking out a $45 ukulele! So now I need to come up with another almost $25 gift for Kid #1 to make it even. She is dying for some Nike windbreaker her friend has. Everything lately comes from things her friends have. Ugh. I’m not paying $100 for a windbreaker. Nope. So now she says she wants a new flat iron that isn’t the skinny kind. I told her I would pay $25 toward a flat iron and she can use her birthday money toward the rest and that I would start watching for Ulta sales. I’m pretty sure they just had a hot tool sale. Figures.

So now the girls are fighting about cakes. Kid #2 wants an ice cream cake from DQ. Not a problem. I’ll just go get it right before the party. DQ is only about 20 minutes down the road. Kid #1 says that is stupid and selfish of Kid #2 to want a cake we can only get right before the party and a type of cake that I won’t eat. It isn’t selfish – it is Kid #2’s birthday cake so she can choose. I’ve told Kid #1 multiple times to back off. I personally don’t like cake. I’ll eat a piece of cookie cake from time to time but I’m just not a cake person. I’ll manage to live not eating cake on the day of the party just like I manage the other 364 days of the year. Kid #1 wants a homemade cake that is made from scratch. She says she wants to make it with Mom. Sounds fun… but so messy. Mom hasn’t made cake from scratch for several years so that could turn bad real quick. Whatever, I just want them to stop fighting about stupid crap.

Once again, like every birthday and Christmas, Mom is panicking thinking the girls don’t have enough gifts to open. Every single year. Despite the fact that we just dropped about $600 on school clothes and school supplies (and I’m looking at about $800 in the next week for a car repair bill as the alternator in Mom’s car has went out), she thinks they need more stuff. Stuff that they won’t put up or take care of after the fact. It drives me insane. So when I go to the store to pick up those random small items on my list, I’m going to have to appease Mom by finding a few other bigger items to wrap for these kids. Insane, I tell you.

Wish my sanity luck folks.

*About that debacle… Last year Kid #1 was allowed to have a mixed gender birthday party. The boys were told they had to leave by 9pm originally. Mom gave in and said they could stay until 10pm because it was still kind of twilight out around 9pm since Kid #1 wanted to have a bonfire. Come the night of the party, Mom watched the 3 boys leave right around 10pm. The 7 or 8 girls stayed out by the pond with the bonfire after the boys left.

About 11pm, Kid #2 went out to hang out with them but came back inside immediately because there were boys outside. Mom went out and watched 2 boys take off running. She made all the girls come inside for the rest of the night. Kid #1 was pissed, adamant that it wasn’t her fault the boys came back. I told her under no circumstances was she getting out of trouble because it was her party so they were her responsibility.

The next morning, when I went over to the pond to start cleaning up the mess, I found a couple vodka bottles in the weeds that were not there the day before. I would know because I mowed the grass around the pond so the kids wouldn’t be standing in the weeds. So Kid #1 was in even more trouble. She claims she wasn’t drinking. Sure, whatever. Still in trouble. And no more mixed gender parties continuing into the evening. She will be allowed to invite her boyfriend and the boys on her guard team but they will be leaving at 9pm and everyone else gets to come inside for the night.

Whether she told the boys to sneak back or she was involved in the alcohol doesn’t matter. Her party, her friends, her responsibility. The problem would have been solved by her coming inside to let us know the boys had snuck back to the party. She didn’t so now these are the consequences. And that is why she really doesn’t want a party this year.

Sorry kid, this is not party central. We may live in the middle of nowhere but we will not be the house all the teenagers go to drink and get high in the middle of the night. Not while I live here.

❤ Dee

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