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Ravin

No RSVPs--how worried should I be?

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DS is having a birthday party next Sunday. His birthday was earlier in March, but I was hoping he would get better turnout for his party if we did it on a weekend that doesn't fall at one or other end of Spring Break, which meant putting it off until next weekend. And it's on Sunday (which I realize is Palm Sunday) because his cub scout pack has an outing on Saturday plus we have religious services on Saturday, so it was full.

 

Well, so far, we have received exactly 1 RSVP, and that for a kid whose mom I texted the invite because he was in DS's class last year and invited DS to his birthday party in the fall.

 

DS distributed invites to all the kids in his class and his cub scout den, plus I invited his friends from our druid grove and his BFF whose mom is a friend of mine.

 

I'm dismayed there have been no RSVPs. Last year we received a few last-minute, but just as many shortly after the invites went out. DS is going to be so disappointed if only one kid shows up to his party!

 

 

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Ugh, I hate when people don’t let you know - I’m so sorry. At this point, I would start calling people and ask if their dc is coming “just so I can get a headcount and plan accordingly.â€

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Ugh, I hate when people don’t let you know - I’m so sorry. At this point, I would start calling people and ask if their dc is coming “just so I can get a headcount and plan accordingly.â€

Yes, I would call or text and ask people.

 

I hope he has many guests and a great party!

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Agreeing. I think you're going to have to individually contact people for their responses.

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Ugh, I hate when people don’t let you know - I’m so sorry. At this point, I would start calling people and ask if their dc is coming “just so I can get a headcount and plan accordingly.â€

 

 

Yep, start calling/texting/whatever.  No one does this right anymore.....

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I would email or call, but I've been surprised at how few people RSVP for bday parties.  Drives me batty.

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I’d start texting, too. Especially if the invite might have ended up in a bag that is only used for scouts, and therefore never really gone through by a parent.

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My DS13 was notorious for having birthday invites in his school bag and letting it sit in there. The host parents would catch up with me during drop off or pick up time to let me know he has a birthday invite.

One year his classmate who lives a few doors away gave the entire kindergarten class invites and it just sat in his bag until way after the event. Her mom already invited us verbally before the invites were out so I didn’t think to look for invites.

 

So I would just call or email since the invite may just be sitting in a school bag somewhere honestly forgotten.

 

My DS12 is very enthusiastic about invites and would hand them to me the minute I pick him up and checked that I have RSVP.

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Well...I can call or text or email the people I actually know, but I don't have the contact info for most of the kids in his class. 

 

Sigh.

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I’m so sorry people are being so inconsiderate, Ravin. :(

 

I hope you’re able to get in touch with at least some of the parents and that your son has a great birthday party.

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To be fair, every year I find a birthday party invite in my kids’ backpacks well after the party. It’s like a black hole in there.

 

The teacher may be able to give you contact info. It’s worth a try.

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I would contact people. I usually check with a few people and get a commitment before I pick my date. I sure hope folks are lazy but coming!

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He got the invites out the Monday before spring break. Which meant there was several weeks opportunity to come across them. Not to mention his den...

 

I am not doing individual goody bags partly for this reason! There will be an egg hunt and a pinata, and the cake is not going to change size. I guess I'll just wing it. I'll double check the neighbor kids got their invitation, I sent my friend who is DS's bestie's mom a reminder, and the folks from the Grove, and asked DH in case any of the den parents RSVP'd to him.

 

 

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To be fair, every year I find a birthday party invite in my kids’ backpacks well after the party. It’s like a black hole in there.

 

The teacher may be able to give you contact info. It’s worth a try.

 

No teacher is allowed to give a parent contact info of another student or parent.  Ever.  

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No teacher is allowed to give a parent contact info of another student or parent.  Ever.  

 

This.

 

I bugged my friend so now we have 2 RSVPs.

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No teacher is allowed to give a parent contact info of another student or parent. Ever.

My DS13’s first grade teacher emailed the parents in his class for any school special events and put all the parents email in the To: portion.

 

So all the parents in that class ended up having each other’s email.

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Pick a few favorites to ask specifically and then let it go. If you end up with a lot of cake you can freeze it for fun, made up celebrations later.

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He got the invites out the Monday before spring break. Which meant there was several weeks opportunity to come across them. Not to mention his den...

 

 

That may have actually been a bit too much time ahead of the party. People think, oh, I have plenty of time to deal with that, and then spring break comes along and wipes everything out of their brain. 

 

I am feeling understanding toward them because it's possible that I completely blanked and missed my own nephew's birthday party recently. 

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I had a similar story last year. What I ended up doing was getting in touch with the room mom. She had contact info for a lot if not all parents. I could tell not all parents had seen the invite! Note to self if he ever goes back to b&m school I should make more effort to meet/exchange info with parents. I also would suggest just asking the parents you do know if they have contact info for others.

 

Spring break means they probably forgot.

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Was there a date to RSVP by? I got multiple RSVPs on the date I said they were due on. And I have to admit, I tend to wait to last minute just because there is a date and my brain fixates on it. 

Is there another meeting before the event where you can ask parents or he can ask the kids?

 

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This.

 

I bugged my friend so now we have 2 RSVPs.

 

I don't know how people stand to play this game. I know this is just how it is now, but I think it stinks for people not to respond to invitations. Really stinks. Like, intolerably stinks.

 

If there will be three children for sure, but you have no idea about the rest, there are two options:

 

Create the party with a whole lot of flex built in - as you say upthread, no individual gift bags, food that can be frozen, etc. and just wait and see whether it will be a big party or a little party.

 

Or

 

Scrap the party plans and take the three children somewhere really, really wonderful. Don't even worry about the people who might show up without having told you they were coming.

 

If option B would make the birthday child happy, I'd do it without a second thought.

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I always started calling a few days before the event.

No one knows that RSVP means you are supposed to respond anymore.

 

Sorry to single you out, and I don't know that you have the answers to these questions, but I have to ask somewhere:

 

1. How. How do people go from knowing that 2000 to not knowing it in 2018.

 

2. What about the people who avoid using the dreaded exact term, "RSVP'" but clearly state, "Call, text, email, or tell me in person whether you are coming, so I can plan the party and order food and supplies," who also get zero response?

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I am not serving food, other than maybe some snacks and cake and ice cream.

 

I already bought decorations (Minecraft is not in the top 5 fad themes right now so that required forking over money on Amazon), a pinata, the easter eggs, have the cake planned (Minecraft is at least easy to imitate there!), and so forth. I just need to get some more treats to go in the pinata and eggs with the wrist bands and stickers I found on Amazon.

 

I so far have some chocolate carrots. Going to look for more of those, plus anything else even vaguely reminiscent of Minecraft anything. Really small bunnies? Chickens, anything shaped like blocks, etc. 

 

Ooh, we might play "rotten potato" (like hot potato, but with just regular potatoes, one of them can be "rotten."

 

We have a wooden sword to hit the pinata with.

 

I think it'll be good enough to satisfy 1st graders, DS in particular.

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I am not serving food, other than maybe some snacks and cake and ice cream.

 

I already bought decorations (Minecraft is not in the top 5 fad themes right now so that required forking over money on Amazon), a pinata, the easter eggs, have the cake planned (Minecraft is at least easy to imitate there!), and so forth. I just need to get some more treats to go in the pinata and eggs with the wrist bands and stickers I found on Amazon.

 

I so far have some chocolate carrots. Going to look for more of those, plus anything else even vaguely reminiscent of Minecraft anything. Really small bunnies? Chickens, anything shaped like blocks, etc. 

 

Ooh, we might play "rotten potato" (like hot potato, but with just regular potatoes, one of them can be "rotten."

 

We have a wooden sword to hit the pinata with.

 

I think it'll be good enough to satisfy 1st graders, DS in particular.

 

If you want to scale back you could remove the eggs or piñata. Sounds like a lot of work to stuff both. Or you could stuff just one egg and that person gets first dibs at something else or simply the winner of that game. If you haven't ordered yet, I would consider looking at dollar stores, party stores, or places like WM & Target for prizes. But I'm not sure if you're trying to just find Minecraft themed prizes. I might be missing the choc. carrot reference if there's a Minecraft tie in.

 

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If majority of his guests are 1st graders, then there is a bigger chance of the invite being still in the bag and not given to the parents. I had parents passed me invites for my oldest because he has that reputation of absent minded professor in his elementary school. We were walking distance from school though so I was always early for pickup time.

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DS is having a birthday party next Sunday. His birthday was earlier in March, but I was hoping he would get better turnout for his party if we did it on a weekend that doesn't fall at one or other end of Spring Break, which meant putting it off until next weekend. And it's on Sunday (which I realize is Palm Sunday) because his cub scout pack has an outing on Saturday plus we have religious services on Saturday, so it was full.

 

Well, so far, we have received exactly 1 RSVP, and that for a kid whose mom I texted the invite because he was in DS's class last year and invited DS to his birthday party in the fall.

 

DS distributed invites to all the kids in his class and his cub scout den, plus I invited his friends from our druid grove and his BFF whose mom is a friend of mine.

 

I'm dismayed there have been no RSVPs. Last year we received a few last-minute, but just as many shortly after the invites went out. DS is going to be so disappointed if only one kid shows up to his party!

 

I u sually get the paper invitations like, an hour before the party.

 

"Member how you said I could go to Layla's party?"

"Yes."

"So why aren't we getting ready?"

"When is it?"

"Today."

"I didn't get an invitation!"

"Oh... yeah... [runs and digs through backpack]. Here it is!!!!!!"

"This says RSVP by last Friday!!!"

"So did we RSVP?"

 

:huh:

 

So yeah, call.

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No teacher is allowed to give a parent contact info of another student or parent. Ever.

We sign waivers at the beginning of the year to allow this. I assumed it was standard practice. My kids’ teachers have always distributed a class directory sometime in October, and when I invariably lost it would give me the contact info when I asked. Maybe it’s just a regional thing then, because I know all the local school districts do it.

 

Edited; This is also a very small town and the school only has around a thousand students K-12 and most of the schools I’m familiar with are the same. I think there’s also an underlying assumption here that we already all know each other. However I moved here when I was a teenager and was homeschooled, so I don’t know most of the parents like the others do.

Edited by MedicMom

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We sign waivers at the beginning of the year to allow this. I assumed it was standard practice. My kids’ teachers have always distributed a class directory sometime in October. Maybe it’s just a regional thing then, because I know all the local school districts do it.

Due to parents using these to hawk whatever MLM they are part of, the schools around here have stopped doing a directory.

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Did he invite all the kids in his class? If so, maybe the teacher would be willing to send out a reminder instead of giving you contact info?

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It is possible many will decline because of Palm Sunday.  I would make sure your son understands that so he won't be too disappointed.

 

Is it possible to choose a different activity if only a very small # RSVP?  Some things are more fun / feasible with fewer kids.

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If you want to scale back you could remove the eggs or piñata. Sounds like a lot of work to stuff both. Or you could stuff just one egg and that person gets first dibs at something else or simply the winner of that game. If you haven't ordered yet, I would consider looking at dollar stores, party stores, or places like WM & Target for prizes. But I'm not sure if you're trying to just find Minecraft themed prizes. I might be missing the choc. carrot reference if there's a Minecraft tie in.

 

 

The tie in is that carrots are one of the foods you can grow and eat in Minecraft (along with beetroots, potato, wheat, melons, and pumpkins).

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I admit that I usually wait until the last minute to RSVP.  Sometimes I even forget and RSVP late.  So a reminder is a great idea, if it's feasible.

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If you want to scale back you could remove the eggs or piñata. Sounds like a lot of work to stuff both. Or you could stuff just one egg and that person gets first dibs at something else or simply the winner of that game. If you haven't ordered yet, I would consider looking at dollar stores, party stores, or places like WM & Target for prizes. But I'm not sure if you're trying to just find Minecraft themed prizes. I might be missing the choc. carrot reference if there's a Minecraft tie in.

 

 

 I already bought both. DS specifically asked for a Minecraft themed egg hunt, and it wouldn't be a birthday party without a Pinata, at least in our family.

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In my experience, I only get RSVPs from people who are coming. So when I've gotten no responses I've also had no attendees.

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I did not put an RSVP deadline on the invitation.

 

So far, calling around I have one "no" from our grove friends. Scrolling through my phone history, I found one mom of a boy in DS's class, asked her if she received the invitation. I'm going to dig out the den leader's contact info this evening.

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Sorry it's stressful figuring this out - I just hosted our first real party this past saturday and it was soooo stressful because it's not my kind of thing. 

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My DS13’s first grade teacher emailed the parents in his class for any school special events and put all the parents email in the To: portion.

 

So all the parents in that class ended up having each other’s email.

This happened to us in kindergarten as well! I was always so grateful she didn't use bcc

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This happened to us in kindergarten as well! I was always so grateful she didn't use bcc

Thankfully every teacher we have had has screwed up at least once and used CC instead of bcc, or the room parent messes up. That is how I get emails of other parents. :Sheepish grin:

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Our school's handbook has parent contact info.  Parents can opt out, but I think most people are in there.

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No teacher is allowed to give a parent contact info of another student or parent.  Ever.  

 

 

We've had success using things like Class Dojo or Bloomz that can be messaged to the entire class.  So I've asked teachers to send out a group message saying,  "XYZ should have given your child an invitation to his bday party, which is happening this Saturday at 12:00 at the Happy Park.   Please email or call me at xxx@xxxx.com or ###-###-#### if your child will be attending.  Siblings welcome (or not.)"

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I've written about this before, but in elementary school, I was the only guest to show up at a friend's birthday party. His folks had gone to a lot of trouble decorating, making food, organizing games, and no one came.

 

It broke my heart. I didn't let on and finally another friend (who had a conflict showed up) and we made the best of the day playing.

 

To make matters worse, the next day was my birthday party (where the crowd, including the previous day's birthday boy, showed up).

 

Fifty years later it is still a painful memory for me.

 

Bill
 

 

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2 of my boys have birthdays this time of year. This weekend as matter of fact, and it was always hard to get people there because of spring break. But people did show. One year I was worried sick because it looked like a total no-show when 15 minutes later everyone started showing up. Not everyone will make it of course but some kids will and will be thrilled to have something fun to do over their break.

 

I understand your stress. I actually had a stroke the next day after the near no-show. Funny that the love we have for them and the stress and worry we have when we are concerned they will be hurt can actually turn into real hurt for us. So take a deep breath, make a few calls or texts just so you know someone will be there, and then relax. That's all you can do.

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My DS13’s first grade teacher emailed the parents in his class for any school special events and put all the parents email in the To: portion.

 

So all the parents in that class ended up having each other’s email.

 

Public school?  

 

I would get in trouble for doing that.  A lot of trouble.

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I’d wait until spring break is over and call them. They could just be on vacation and shutting out the world.

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No teacher is allowed to give a parent contact info of another student or parent. Ever.

That may be true for your particular school but it has never been true at any school I’ve taught at over the past 25 years.

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Public school?

 

I would get in trouble for doing that. A lot of trouble.

None of the class emails I’ve gotten have been BCC.

 

Now any group emails from my son’s school counselor have been, but that is because while we know who’s in the kids classes I as a parent don’t know what other children are receiving services or counseling.

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 I already bought both. DS specifically asked for a Minecraft themed egg hunt, and it wouldn't be a birthday party without a Pinata, at least in our family.

 

We have yet to have a pinata (though I've thought about it) so I thought you could maybe get rid of one or the other. But I see it would be upsetting. 

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Sorry to single you out, and I don't know that you have the answers to these questions, but I have to ask somewhere:

 

1. How. How do people go from knowing that 2000 to not knowing it in 2018.

 

2. What about the people who avoid using the dreaded exact term, "RSVP'" but clearly state, "Call, text, email, or tell me in person whether you are coming, so I can plan the party and order food and supplies," who also get zero response?

I definitely read these very same conversations on a listserv or three circa 2000 so I don’t know when people ever reliably responded to invitations but it was sometime before 2000.

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