Karen's first view of the exciting decorations for her b-day party

Karen was forced to spend her 5th birthday, not celebrating with her best friends, but stuck in a tiny Ukrainian flat with only her parents for company. She understood that she would be missing her actual birthday date, but we promised her to make it up with a party once we returned.

A major challenge is Karen’s own shyness when standing up alone in front of a large group of people. She had meltdowns at most of her school parties because she was too shy to participate with not only her classmates, but also her parents and all the other parents watching. For this reason, we decided against an extravaganza party for her whole class of 35 kids. Some parents throw these large parties for their children at age 4 and 5, but for Karen, I felt it would be overwhelming. Last we year had a small family style party with only her closest, oldest friends and their parents. Only one of the 5 children was in her class.

This year, she insisted on at least inviting all of her best friends from school. She wanted a pajama party more than anything, and while we explained that a pajama party did not necessarily mean that her friends would stay the night, it was still a cool theme, so we agreed to go with it. Our apartment was filled with mattresses and pillows and all the girls were invited to come in their pjs.

The party was on Friday evening. I survived!

P.S. Jono, the pinata was a huge success.