Last summer, Aki and I agreed on the theme of his birthday party.I did not go all-out with the planning yet as I wanted to know the school’s policies on birthday celebrations. As the school year progressed, I realized that Aki’s big school is not big on parties. At least 5 classmates celebrated their birthday in school and none gave invitations. The class adviser only wrote on the diary to inform the parents. If I remember correctly, only 1 gave out loot bags. Actually, in general, Aki’s school is not big on monthly celebrations. I have friends who regularly have to come up with costumes for their kids’ school’s United Nations, Linggo ng Wika, Community Worker, Nutrition day. So far, the school has not required any costumes yet. The closest probably is the monthly note from the vice principal that it is time for a haircut.
Back to the party. Then, a few weeks ago, Aki said he wanted a pizza party like Lance’s. Hmmm. I was immediately sold. If classes are suspended, like last year, no food will go to waste. If the classmates are not in the mood to eat, like in Aki’s old school, we can take home the left-overs. And with only 15-20 minutes of party time, there’s no allowance for games and cutesy details.
Several days before the party, we convinced Aki that there won’t be any party. He did not mind. What he did not know is we told her teacher that we want to surprise Aki.
Here is how the day went
After breakfast, we reviewed Aki for his quiz on the Holy Rosary. Can you guess what mystery this is?
The school bus picked him up at 10AM. We had him bring lunch so that he won’t have a clue on what will happen later. We left shortly after he did.
First stop was the Makati post office where I sent out birthday cards for Aki’s penpals. Next was Santi’s to buy dressing for my salads. I also munched on the free-taste cheese cubes, which I suspect was the reason for my5-day sore throat. I also bought deli slices. I particularly liked loin shaped ham. Only 60 bucks for 6 slices. Not bad, eh? We will definitely buy these more often.
Now, for the party. We went to the grocery to buy paper plates. Then, we went to El Buono to order a giant pizza. I am sure the little ninjas in Aki’s school will get a kick out of seeing a humongous pizza. I was very excited for them. Unfortunately, the Makati branch already closed shop. Booooo! We had not choice but to order from Pizza Hut which was not so bad because they have a buy-one-get-one-free promo. We ordered 4 family size, all for the price of 998.
Went back to the grocery to get drinks for the kids. I also bought materials for our make-your-own-pizza night for the next day. Aki likes our homemade pizza that he “orders” from Ate everyday. We bought a blowing cupcake from Brownies Unlimited and picked up 3 pizza before heading to the school. The fourth pizza was picked up later and was given to his school bus buddies.
At school, because it was a surprise, Franco and I hid so that Aki won’t see us. Teacher made him lead the prayer before meals which was followed by a birthday song from his classmates. I love happiness in Aki’s face.
As the class was singing, Teacher gave us the go signal to come inside. When one of the classmates saw us, he blurted, ” Why is Aki’s cake only a cupcake?!!”. I ignored him, trying to focus on taking pictures of Aki. But he repeated the question. Why is Aki’s cake only cupcake?!! In my mind, I wanted to say, “Sinisira mo ang moment naming mag-ina! And for your information, we did not bring a cake because I have no patience to slice a piece for each of you!” Franco answered him, ” It is a big cake, don’t you see it?”. Somehow, that got the curious kid quiet.
This was Aki’s reaction when he saw us. Was he surprised, confused or disappointed? Hahaha.
One of the most important lessons of the day is NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE APPETITE OF LITTLE BOYS. As soon as we opened the pizza boxes, even before I could finish the sentence “Bring your plates and line up please”, the boys rushed to the pizza!
These boys!! Grabe! Even the skinniest ones happily gobbled one slice after another.
They were probably tetra-pack juice-deprived liked Aki because Zest-O got them super excited. We had 3 extra packs of juice. When I asked if anyone wants them, the boys ran to me. I loved the attention but the clamor made me feel like one of my poor panicking uncles who had to hold a pabitin during birthday parties. Luckily, I have a hero and a gentleman for a son. He ran to my rescue and pushed his classmates who were jumping up and down to grab my invisible Zest-o pabitin.
Definitely next year, we will bring more pizza, more drinks and a real cake.
We had group pictures. These are the group 1 boys. The fourth boy is Zac who I think is Aki’s bestfriend. Aki talks about him all the time. Sabi ni Zac yun sun sa drawing ko mukhang ipis. Zac is cool. Absent si Zac. Zac has a different chair because he is left-handed. I hate Zac.
And they are all so chatty! Everyone had something to say or ask. Just like Aki. It was never quiet in the 20 minutes that we were there. Someone told me that he only eats the edges of pizza. Someone said Leonardo is the best ninja turtle. Someone said he wants more pizza. I wish I have more time to know Aki’s friends more.
Franco’s bestfriend was his classmate in prep. Maybe one of these boys will be one of Aki’s lifelong friends too.
Unfortunately, all good things have to come to an end. After lunch, the kids need to sit and relax for 5 minutes.
And look at the donations that we got. Instead of giving Aki gifts, we asked the parents to donate preloved clothes and toys to the kids of St. Rita Orphanage. The parents were only given one day notice so I am amazed that we got so many donations!
Will post Part II, someday. Links to Aki’s past birthday parties are posted in the side bar.