The next party was for a "nanny posse" playmate of S and A's, a nice girl with, um, interesting parents. In addition to having their daughter's entire preschool class and family friends (total: 25 adults, 400 children under age 4), they had as the headliner for their party this guy. To his credit, he kept the kids absolutely in stitches for 30 minutes. But $300 (or more) for some guy just acting goofy? Wow. Nice work if you can get it.
I don't mean to sound like an ungracious guest. I really do appreciate the wide circle of friends S. and A. have and the associated parents with whom we've become friends over the past 3+ years through preschool and the playground (in addition to the network our nanny has built with other neighborhood nannies). But when did it become necessary to shell out many hundreds of dollars for a preschooler's birthday party? Am I considered a bad host for having birthday parties that consist of a craft (this year it was making "crowns" out of posterboard decorated with crayons/markers/stickers we have in our everyday craft kit), snacks, cake and a pinata?
(Please don't get me started on "goodie bags." This year for A's party I just bought Baskin Robins gift certificates and boxes of crayons.)
D.'s observation on all of this is that the one requirement he has for all future parties for our children is beer for the grownups.