Party Pooper or Practical Parent?
Question: Is it OK to use a child's birthday party as free childcare on a Saturday afternoon? My kid attends so many and I could fit a few errands in between drop-off/pick-up.
Answer: As someone without children, I love weighing in on such matters.
I'm going to go ahead and give this a big, fat YES. Why should you be forced to endure cheesy parlor games and greasy party snacks when you could be out getting a manicure? Your progeny will have more fun without you there anyhow.
This approval obviously comes with caveats. First and foremost, your kid must be fully potty trained. He should be free of deadly nut allergies and able to feed himself without choking to death. Basically, your kid must be so well behaved that your presence won't be missed for a second, so no biters, bullies or tantrum throwers.
You will also need to run it by the birthday kid's parents. Telephone the morning of and say: "Hello Sally's mom. We're so excited about Sally's birthday party. I see that the start time is 2pm. What time should I return to pick Bobby back up?" This sets you up for in-the-clear free time while allowing Sally's mom to chime in if parental units are, in fact, required (in which case, you're S.O.L).
Enjoy your stolen time and know that the other parents may quietly hate you for it. (And leave you alone with a pack of sugar-high fiends when your own kid's birthday rolls around).