For a six year old boy this was a life altering event. In fact, I am considering cataloguing all his pictures and memories with "B.M." and "A.M." (Before Mario and After Mario). I have hope that there will be an After After Mario, but for now I'm not holding my breath.
The kid is 100% obsessed.
Everything is/will be/should be/has to be Mario.
Clothes. Bedding. Toys. TV shows. Imaginary play. Conversations. Dreams. Halloween costumes. Food. Christmas ornaments.
You name it. The boy at least wishes it was Mario.
As his mother...I HATE IT. I was raised in a home where Nintendo and other video game systems were considered a "waste of time; time better spent doing something to enrich or educate your mind and body". That was my take as a new parent too.
But I also remember what it was like being a kid and wanting to be involved in what all your friends were into. In this day and age, first grade boys LOVE Mario and Luigi. As superficial as it seems, much of my boy's friendships seem to be based on all things Mario.
So it was no surprise that this year, as Dee's birthday came closer, he had two requests: 1- "Can I PLEASE have a birthday party with my friends?" and 2- "MARIO!"
As the years go by and my parenting style adapts I am working to do some things the way my children want versus the way I want. If it were up to my we would avoid the mainstream and pop culture when it comes to things like bedding, toys, clothes, and birthday parties. But it's not up to me. It's Dee's birthday party. It's his choice. So...*sigh*...Mario...it is. (This isn't to say my children get everything they want. But it's time for me to let go of some of the control and let them form their own personalities and tastes.)
Confession: I complained to begin with. I may have even tried a bit of coaxing and bribing to not have a Mario party. But after I let go and let live the brain juices started flowing. A Super Mario party would never have been my first choice, but it was so much fun to plan and prepare for!
I hit up my local party store for Mario themed invitations.
Just a little mom-to-mom helpful hint here: This was our very first friend party. Dee wanted to invite a few boys from his school class. Since we didn't have all their addresses he took the invites to school and handed them out as class was ending. This was a horrible mistake. I happened to be there that day and watched--along with the other classmates--as only a select few got the invites. I would have loved to invite them all, but this was just not possible. It was heart wrenching and I could see we had gone about this all wrong. I talked to Dee's teacher about it afterwards and she advised the best method was for the child to come early to school and pass them out before class starts. That way the kids are still pretty distracted and not as many are getting their feelings hurt. Now I know what to do next time.
Dee requested a pinata for his party so the week before I worked on making a Yoshi egg pinata. Somehow I find myself making pinatas a couple of times a year. Store pinatas are really expensive! You can make your own for pennies on the dollar. While it can be messy and kind of a long process, it's really simple and a lot of fun. (I posted a how-to back in 2010.)
I realize this post has gotten irrationally long so I'll share a tutorial on my personal favorite part of the whole party... le pièce de résistance...The Piranha Plant Table Centerpieces! another day.
Happy Super Birthday to my super little plumber who I think had a most excellent time at his Super Mario birthday party!