In further proof that it's hard out there for moms who want to celebrate their kids' birthdays without ending up in the poor house, allow me to present exhibit a: kids' spa parties. Yes, you read that right. Wee little children aren't just being spoiled with a day at the spa; they are bringing along a gaggle of their besties to be indulged!
I must be doing something wrong. Here I was married and pregnant before I stepped foot in a spa!
You may have read that as jealousy. You'd be half right.
As an adult woman who feels decadent when she takes half an hour and $7 to get her eyebrows waxed, I did feel the green-eyed monster rising up in my guts when I saw a Groupon land in my inbox for kids' spa parties ("just" $49, down from $100 ... and yes, you still have to pay $25 for each additional kid AND $10 extra for each kid over age 11 to bring the total to a whopping Good God, Who Can Afford That?!).
And then I came to my senses, and my own (blue) eyes started rolling. Sorry, but children do not need spa treatments. And they certainly don't need spa birthday parties.
I say this as the mother of a 7-year-old girl who absolutely adores all things girly. She and her teenage babysitter have played spa at our house, cutting up my yellow squash and putting it on their eyes, soaking their feet in the buckets I use for mopping the floor (don't worry, they were wiped clean first). If I asked her if she wanted a spa party, I can almost guarantee that her eyes would light up, and she'd be hopping up and down with excitement.
Which is why I'm not going to ask her. I'm not putting ideas like that in her head.
She's 7. Letting the babysitter paint her nails with some non-toxic polish at home is all the pampering she needs. Heck, I'll even hire the sitter to come over and paint the nails of every little girl she wants to invite to her birthday party.
But that's about as far as I'm willing to go.
In no small part, my problem is the beauty-focused environment of a spa. They wax. They thread. They strip your skin of "impurities" and make you up.
It is a place where we grown folks go to be improved. Little girls are already perfect.
I'm bothered too by the excess of a spa party. The cost. The spoiling. The one-on-one me, me, me atmosphere.
Adults go to the spa to be pampered because we so rarely are. Little girls are, more or less, catered to on a daily basis by their parents. They hardly need more.
If spa parties for kids are the next big thing, you'll have to count me out. You'll find me at the bowling alley.
Would you throw a spa party for your daughter's birthday?
Image via Pink Sherbet Photography/Flickr