Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Day I Made Pinterest My Bitch

I know, I know, we're all in a love-hate relationship with Pinterest. We love all the awesome ideas we find, but we hate when we try them and they don't turn out right. We especially hate it when those nauseatingly perfect moms post a shit-ton of their kids birthday parties all over Facebook. (Yes, I am one of those nauseating moms - not perfect, but one who posts a lot of pictures.) Here's the way I look at it, we post things because we are proud of them and I don't see anything wrong with that.

We all put our best faces on social media and, although I wish people would be more "real" I get it. It's like stepping out of the house without putting on our makeup, bras or brushing our hair. For the most part, we want people to like us and a lot of that is determined by their first impression of us. (Unless we're going to Walmart. Then it is perfectly acceptable to go makeup-less, braless, hell, even pants-less because I guarantee we'd still look better than most of the other people there. Have you ever seen People of Walmart?)

I digress...Thursday is my youngest's second birthday. We decided to do her party on Valentine's Day because all our kids were with us that weekend and we didn't want any of them to miss the celebration. (Hubs and I each have two kids from previous marriages and one together.)

As soon as I set the date of the party I started scouring Pinterest for Valentine's birthday party ideas. If you know me, you will know that this is highly unlike me. Up until that point, I had always strongly disliked Pinterest. It aggravated me that, when you found something you wanted to look at, you had to sign in to your account to do so. I could never remember my password, and could never be bothered to sit there retyping it a gagillion times just to be able to see a picture of a cake or balloon bouquet.

Anywho, for some reason I suddenly became obsessed with Pinterest. I started pinning things left and right...I was addicted. Even hubs noticed and commented how hilarious he thought it was that I was so into Pinterest when I had so openly expressed my dislike of it in the past. I didn't care, I kept pinning away; party ideas, food, fashion, kids stuff, wedding ideas (for when hubs and I finally have a ceremony with family and friends involved). I was like an addict who couldn't wait to sneak away for five minutes to get my next fix.

I spent the next few weeks slowly gathering supplies: heart-shaped cookie cutters; candy for the candy bar; heart-themed paper plates and napkins; streamers; party dress for the birthday girl and a bunch of other miscellaneous crap that I found. I decided to make this birthday party a challenge, of sorts. As mentioned before, we're usually trying to post our best on social media. The cute kid pictures, the beautiful sunshiny days, the awesome birthday cakes. I wanted to see if it was actually possible to have a Pinterest-worthy day, in real life.

With that said, feast your eyes on these pictures and let me know what you think.

We started the day with heart-shaped Eggs in a Basket
and bacon. The bacon sort of lost its shape while it was
cooking, but the kids were still impressed.

The evening before, hubs and I started putting up
streamers that stretched from the middle of the 
ceiling to all corners of the room. We ran out of 
tape (because our children are tape-thieves and
no matter how many rolls I buy, they are always
gone when I need them) and had to finish it 
the next morning.

After breakfast was cleaned up, I decorated the
cupcakes and heart-shaped cake I had baked the 
night before. Yes, heart-shaped cake - BOOM!

What Valentine's birthday party would be
complete without heart-shaped tomatoes 
(that's right, bitches, I said mother-effing 
heart-shaped tomatoes), cucumbers and 
cheese/pepperoni crackers?

And let's not forget the heart-shaped mini pizzas!

Or homemade Oreo pops...

That the birthday girl clearly hated...

Raspberry sherbert punch.
Can't have a party without a drink with cute paper straws.
(Although dammit all to hell if I didn't forget the pretty 
purple mason jar cups.)

Photo booths are all the rage these days
but as I wasn't prepared to slap down 
$500 to rent one, I got the props and we
took our own fun pictures. (Don't be fooled
by the total look of disinterest on hub's face.
He loved it.)

I created a miniature candy bar complete with 
Dum-Dum flower pot thingamajig and
homemade pom-pom whatchamacallits. 

The adorable birthday girl in her special dress
and matching headband.

So, all-in-all, it was a success. I didn't have enough time to cut the honeydew and cantaloupe with the heart-shaped cookie cutter for the fruit salad, so that was a bit annoying. Then there were a couple of people who took cupcakes before we had sung Happy Birthday, that was irritating. I also wasn't able to capture great photos with my iPhone, and although I remembered half-a-dozen times beforehand, during the party I totally forgot to to take out the real camera.

Here's what I learned during my Pinterest Day: Nothing is ever perfect. No matter what you do, how far in advance you plan or how many lists you write, you are going to forget something. It is like your wedding day, there is always something that goes amiss that only you notice. On my (first) wedding day, we forgot to pick up the aisle runner and the ring bearer walked down the aisle without a ring pillow. No one noticed, or cared, except me.

I also learned that, when posting your event on social media, it is easy to play it off as though everything went to plan. You can post all the best pictures after sorting through the 24,589 that you took and you don't have to share with anyone that you forgot the purple mason jars or ran out of time for the heart-shaped melon. Yes, I think Pinterest can put an awful lot of unnecessary pressure on your average non-party planning mother, like me, but it is also totally doable.

At the end of the day, it isn't about winning some sort of Pinterest competition. It is about whether or not you are happy with the overall outcome. As everyone knows, if Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.

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