It's not done much anymore ... and I kind of miss it.
Guest blogger Jana Mathews: Included among the things have gone the way of the dinosaurs is opening presents AT your birthday party. When I was growing up in the 80s, everyone had their birthday parties at their house. The best part of the event--for everyone in attendance--was when all of the party guests sat in a circle around the birthday boy/girl and screamed "OPEN MINE FIRST!!!!" while pointing to a mangled gift bag or newspaper-wrapped box.
Now that it's less hassle and more cool to have your birthday party at exotic destinations like Chuck-E-Cheese's or the local bowling alley, it is no longer customary for birthday gifts to be opened in front of the people who gave them. Today, most kids open their presents at home after the party is over.
There are, of course, practical reasons for this change. Some venues aren't conducive to present opening; others don't allow it. I understand the reasons why kids don't open presents at their parties anymore, yet as one tradition gives way to another, I can't help but feel sad that my children are missing out on one of most memorable experiences from my childhood: namely, the joy of picking out a present for a friend and watching him/her freak out (in a good way) at the moment of its unveiling.
What are your thoughts? Should kids open their presents at their birthday parties? Why or why not?
|Jana Mathews is the mother of "four under five" and the author of The Meanest Mom blog.|