I have a love-hate relationship with Xbox and I know I’m not alone.
One on hand, that little console is solely responsible for my newfound ability to sleep past 6:30am on the weekends, but on the other, it’s cause for a lot of yelling in my house.
“Just wait until the quarter is over!”
“Thanks, Mom, you made me lose a life.”
Pros and cons aside, when I finally accepted the fact that my son’s 7th birthdayhad to be dealt with, naturally I didn’t have to think too hard about a theme: Xbox-themed birthday party. Boom.
My son was born in Boca, so I understand the birthday party pressure. I went all out for the first birthday…I had it catered, I rented chairs and tables, I even put down a foam floor in my dining room and brought in Miss Cathy for a mid-party ‘Mommy and Me’ class. And that was completely overshadowed the next week by a party at the Boca Raton Resort, complete with the cast of Sesame Street Live and “Dorothy’s” as favors. (You wouldn’t believe how many fish were left in the elevators because mothers of one-year-olds just can’t deal with another organism to feed and worry about dying.)
So just when I said I’d never have another party at my house (I actually said it three times), I started planning the big birthday bash—at my house.
But it’s a whole new ball game at age 7, so I did my best to keep things in check. And lo and behold, this Xbox-themed birthday party was our best ever! Here’s how I did it.
I have a thing for stationery, and I’ve had invitations printed for all of our previous birthday parties. But with elementary school comes no need to invite the ENTIRE class, and 7 year-old boys don’t like 7-year-old girls. We decided on keeping it to just “the posse” (which actually came to 15) so an Evite was in order. They have great video game options, and an even better selection if you spring for the “Premium.”
To keep the number of bodies in my house to a minimum I included two things on the invitation… The first was “No siblings.” Why? Because I was trying to keep the number of mouths to feed and seating necessary to a minimum. And I’m not fully baby-proofed anymore. The second was “Drop-off optional.” When your kids get to 7, this is a beautiful thing. Why did I do this? Because I didn’t want a bunch of grown-ups hanging out (and eating) either. All the boys pretty much got dropped off, though a few moms stuck around. This was totally okay because those moms are actually my friends.
Side note: When one dad arrived with his son, he sat himself down at my kitchen table. I’ve known him for a while so I said, “You’re welcome to stay, but you’re welcome to leave, too.” He was in shock. “Really?” It’s like it didn’t compute. And then he was gone so fast you might have thought his pants were on fire.
There’s this beautiful thing called the Game Truck, and you absolutely, positively CANNOT have a video game themed party without one. It’s kitted out with couches, huge TVs and video games and it parks outside your house. You basically throw up to 16 kids in there for 90 minutes—which gives you time to brace yourself for when they stampede into your house for food.
Repeat after me… Etsy is your friend for an Xbox-themed birthday party. A quick “Xbox” search yielded an awesome poster and centerpiece. I was done with decorations in under 5 minutes—except for the 8:30am run to Party City for balloons the day of the party.
Note: The poster was delivered to me as a PDF file, so I had to send it to a printer to get the actual poster.
Obviously pizza is the birthday party go-to after the age of 1, so pizza it was. I did have to make a Costco run for chips, water and juice boxes, so I did pick up a tray of wraps for our grown-up family members (and a large tray of salad when I ordered the pizza, too). As for the cake, my son wanted cookie cake and Shea’s Bakery was more than happy to adhere to our theme.
Who’s sick of goody bags filled with crap from China? I either throw that stuff away the second I get home or my son hoards it in box after box for years. That’s why I asked Shea’s Bakery to make cookies in the shape of controllers. They looked amazing and tasted amazing, too.
So there you have it… An Xbox-themed birthday party in 5 simple steps. A great time was had by all (especially my son), but I think we’ll go away for his birthday next year…
The brain behind the beauty blog InsiderBeautyBuzz.com and the innovative self-tan remover, Bronze Buffer, Paige Herman-Axel is a modern (and busy) Boca mom. When she’s not blogging, bronzing or buffing, Paige is a freelance beauty writer and consultant for skincare companies big and small, dermatologists, plastic surgeons and more. In the rare time spent away from her computer, Paige can be found shuttling her seven-year-old son to and from basketball practice.