When did birthday parties go from a song and a cupcake, to extravagant themes, coordinating food ideas, intricate cakes and take home goodie bags that rival Hollywood swag bags?! The expectations on moms is just a little insane with Pinterest at our fingertips and Facebook to boast what our friends (and frienemies) are doing! Its almost considered inadequate to simply buy a gallon of ice cream and some 99 cent streamers and call it a day. Just having celebrated my son’s 3rd birthday, these matters are fresh on my heart.

imageDon’t get me wrong – I am SO one of those moms researching party ideas for weeks in advance and running from store to store for the right craft supplies and napkins just the right shade of yellow. But then who am I trying to impress? I know my friends love me and my family whether we are serving microwaved leftovers or wearing yesterday’s shirt and slippers, or they wouldn’t be my friends. And certainly my children couldn’t care less; they are like every other American child that prefers the box over the actual contents 97% of the time.

This brings me to think – if I spent even half the time I do searching Pinterest and Facebook or dropping in multiple stores, investing in my spiritual walk with God and teaching my kids how to love others and have a servant’s heart – we would be a lot better off! I could be investing in the long term and ultimate ‘party’ and impressing the only one who’s opinion really matters.

Not that I’m giving up Pinterest by any means – lets not get crazy here. This holiday season, I really want to challenge myself to realign my priorities and scroll some scripture just as frequently as I scroll my Facebook news feed or Pinterest uses for old shoe boxes or recipes with canned pumpkin purée. I want to get back to the basics so when Christmas comes in 36 days, we can pop open that gallon of vanilla ice cream and string some tinsel and sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to the ultimate Birthday Boy. He doesn’t need themed food, expensive gifts or even care what color the napkins are. Now excuse me while I Pinterest, ‘Ways to show a servants heart’…while eating my leftover two ingredient pumpkin purée birthday cake!