Idea No.


Labor Day Hotel -8yr- Beignets & A Swim



February 2002


Vickie in New Orleans, LA

Honorable Mention

Surprise Party

My daughters birthday always falls on Labor Day Weekend (Aug. 31st) and she is always "Cheated" out of a real party because family and friends always head for the Gulf Coast that weekend.  I pulled a fast one on her last year (Her 8th Birthday).  I rented a one bedroom suite from the Towne Place Suites by Marriott and invited 7 classmates.  I told the parents not to tell the girls until they were actually on their way so that no one could tip Emily off.  I didn't even tell my older daughter! 

When the guests arrived they drew pictures and cut out decorations out of construction paper, made "Chains" out of the colorful paper to hang as garland.  Basically I left it up to them to decorate.  I brought a plain cookie cake that I had baked at a friends house the night before and brought some bags of icing and various tips to let the girls decorate her cake. 

When we were almost done, I called my husband (we live 5 minutes away) and he played it up really good for our two little listeners!  He pretended that our friend, Mr. Billy, was on the phone and he wanted them to come visit him at the hotel and swim for a while.  The girls were so excited as they packed their swim suits he said.  We had prearranged with the hotel to have a key waiting for him at the desk when he asked for "Mr. Billy's Room". 

The front desk clerk then called me to let me know they were on their way up.  You could hear the girls in the hallway arguing over who was going to use the "credit card" to open the door.  My husband intervened and did a "Eany, meany, miny mo" job, certain to land on Emily!  When she opened the door we all yelled surprise!  She literally fell backwards out of her flip flop shoes!   

We took the girls to the pool to swim for a while, came back and ordered pizza, sang happy birthday, snacked and had a good ole time.  I do have to pass on a little secret that worked with a bunch of na├»ve 8 year olds.  Since we were in a hotel and there was only one clock in the bedroom, I was able to pull their legs and tell them that I can't believe it was 3 o'clock in the morning and they were still awake.  They were all amazed!!  The power of suggestion is incredible. 

They all suddenly started yawning and getting tired and before long they all fell asleep while watching a movie.  The time was actually 11:30.  This worked out really well because no one was tired and cranky in the morning.  My husband came back around 7:00 with a bundle of Beignets (New Orleans Delicacy).  We were able to feed the girls and gather all their belongings and go for a quick swim all before the parents arrived for pick up.  Emily still talks about that party.

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