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Mums 80th birthday

(95 Posts)
Mattsmum2 Thu 10-Jun-21 15:41:27

My mum is 80 next year and I want to do something special. My brother says she won’t want a party but I disagree. I’ve had thoughts are to hire the local village hall (she’s very well known in her village and has done lots for the community over the years), on the Sunday before her birthday and get caterers in to do an afternoon tea, cakes sandwiches and of course tea and other beverages. Do it as a drop in for a few hours so people can come and say happy birthday. The only thing is that the Sunday before her birthday is Mothering Sunday ( her birthday has always been around this day). Do you think it’s worth doing or will people be busy with their own families? Also welcome to know if anyone else has had other types of celebration. Thanks x

BlackSheep46 Sat 12-Jun-21 12:19:28

The trouble with a big party is that the 'chief' never has a chance to speak to everyone. For one of my big birthdays I arranged a series of teas/lunches etc with various small groups of friends or family. My birthday then went on for weeks and I loved every minute of it. Why not ask your Mum to set aside various days around her birthday and you will organise various groups of friends or family to celebrate on those days ? So much better than one big party !!

StephLP Sat 12-Jun-21 12:22:23

We organised a surprise 80th party for our mum in our local Parish Hall. Told her to get dressed up for the evening as the family were taking her out. On arrival at the party Mum burst into tears, loved every minute and chatted and danced the night away! Mum died last year (aged 86) and I am so glad that we had the party for her.

Humbertbear Sat 12-Jun-21 12:23:47

My mother was 100 last year. She was relieved that we couldn’t hold a family gathering and that the management where she lives couldn’t organise a party for all the residents. You need to ask your mother if she wants a party. My MiL much preferred to see members of the family separately so she could talk to each little family

JadeOlivia Sat 12-Jun-21 12:33:53

I had this sort of dilemma with dh' s 60th. In the end, we asked him and he had a lonc hard think .....and had 3 birthday do s ...one for very close family in a swish restaurant, a Sunday afternoon champagne and cake for extended family and one for about 6 friends plus spouses. The only one was a bit of work was the last one, but it was all worth it.

BlueBelle Sat 12-Jun-21 12:37:39

I m not one for surprises nor is my daughter (the organiser in the family) so thankfully I ve not had one The year before last she booked a lovely tea for me and my three best friends but other than that not really had any parties for decade birthdays
So my advice would be to ask
I presume you’re in USA as Mother’s Day has been and gone here but then I didn’t know you had villages and village halls over there, so I m confused now
I did a party for Dads 90th at a local hotel but with his say so we organised it together and my daughter in Europe and her three came over as the surprise part he was thrilled and it was so funny ( I thought ) as people were bringing there mums and dads and asking what time to pick them up just like kindergarten and the walking frames and wheelchairs were parked in the corridor 😂

Stillwaters Sat 12-Jun-21 12:40:41

Definitely ask her.

We helped with an 80th birthday party for an aunt - and whilst she sort of enjoyed it, (and she's very spry), she found it absolutely exhausting and didn't get the chance to talk to everyone - the usual problem with large gatherings.

Why not suggest a series of events (teas/ dinners etc), spread over maybe a month, and have a tiny guest list for each. I'm sure that non of the invitees would mind, and would probably enjoy it more themselves as well.

Parky Sat 12-Jun-21 12:44:15

It's my sister's 80th in January, she wants the immediate family to join her for a holiday in Mexico. As we are scattered in UK and the Americas it is ideal. There will be 15 of us. She will celebrate with a few close friends when she gets home.

Alis52 Sat 12-Jun-21 13:07:06

Ask your mum what she’d like. My mum was 80 a few weeks ago and she would have hated a party. We made a big fuss of her and she had a great day with presents and flowers being delivered, lots of messages from friends and phone calls. Lockdown restrictions had relaxed sufficiently for us to have an upmarket takeaway from a local bistro together. She said afterwards she felt very loved and it was a wonderful day.
The people my mum would have loved to have seen are all a similar age to her and some are very frail and now living a long way away so they wouldn’t have come to a party anyway. Just because she’s had a party for her 50th it doesn’t mean she’ll feel the same for her 80th - it’s a different season. Just make sure you’re doing what she would like and not what you would like, or think ought, to happen - especially when your brother thinks she wouldn’t want one. I wonder why he thinks this…

Destin Sat 12-Jun-21 13:08:30

I am 80 next year and thank you but no - I’m not really interested in a ‘surprise’ party being arranged for me by my family. Instead I’ve ‘jumped the gun’ and booked a once in a lifetime trip for myself a trip with a super travel company that I’ve taken holidays with before and their attention to detail and care that they take of their guests has always made each trip a wonderful experience. For me it will means a worry free holiday to visit beautiful places that are full of interest for me. This is how I want to celebrate the year I turn 80, and I couldn’t be more thrilled with the decision I’ve taken to treat myself.

kayn Sat 12-Jun-21 13:15:15

My 80th was in April during so no big do allowed I would have had what you were planning for your Mum But instead had lovely restaurant meals with each of my AC their family’s and: I didn’t have to pick up,the bills 👍

grandMattie Sat 12-Jun-21 13:47:23

Grandma70s

There is a big age range on this site! I am older than your mother.

I’d have been absolutely furious if anyone had organised a party for me. Luckily they knew better.

I’m in my mid 70s but would be FURIOUS if my children organised a surprise party for my birthday. I can’t think of anything I would hate more other than perhaps being taken to a nightclub!
Prefer a very small gathering, if necessary in. “shifts”

darbycall Sat 12-Jun-21 14:14:45

I just celebrated my 80th birthday. It falls between the US Mother's day and the Memorial day weekend. also the day after my brothers birthday. anyway, I told m family that absolutely I did not want big party. My daughter and her husband like to make a big deal out of what they think are significant birthdays. It was kind of a relief in a way that covid made the kind of party they have might have imagined impossible. I was asked how I wanted to celebrate, which was a small family gathering, daughter and hubby, son, his wife and two adolescent grandkids at a local elegant restaurant. I would have liked to have my brother and his wife and son but they live at quite a distance. It was just lovely!

Liz46 Sat 12-Jun-21 14:39:18

One of my best ever presents was a visit to a bird of prey farm. I love owls and was given a big glove and some meat and the different owls flew to me and landed on the glove.

My grandchildren came to watch and I have a lovely photo of my little grandson gently holding a tiny bundle of fluff (newly hatched barn owl).

Can you think of anything like that for your mum?

I would hate a surprise party.

beth20 Sat 12-Jun-21 14:42:30

My mum had a big birthday just before lockdown 1. She is active and sociable but also 'hard of hearing' so finds gatherings very difficult as she can't hear what people are saying in a hubbub. A party would have been a great way of getting family and friends together, but she was much happier with a series of mini-events over a month. We arranged these as 'bring your own' picnics, outdoors and inside, so no worries about catering and we threw away our green credentials by investing in paper plates!
I hope your mum has a great birthday whatever you do.

Ginpin Sat 12-Jun-21 15:49:19

My mum's surprise 90th 1 month before Covid hit was a huge success. Got her here ( 80 miles away under false pretences) to stay for a couple of nights. Family only. Three family members did not come but the rest of us ( about 40) were there. She was so happy to see her 4 children, 3 of our spouses, ( my sister in law has always been difficult) 9 out of 10 grandchildren with their spouses and 10 great grandchildren and one bump. One of her grandaughters, with husband and two tiny boys had travelled all the way from Manchester to Weymouth to celebrate her birthday. smile Mum was absolutely delighted !

Ginpin Sat 12-Jun-21 15:50:42

Local church hall and everyone brought some food.

GrammaH Sat 12-Jun-21 15:54:36

I'd love someone to give me a surprise party! We've had various ones in the family - a 30th, a 50th, a 60th a Ruby wedding, a golden wedding and most recently, my mum's surprise 90th party which she absolutely loved. I've either organised or helped organise each one, all for family members, but I've never had one. I was hopeful on my 60th but no...oh well, one day perhaps!

Mattsmum2 Sat 12-Jun-21 15:58:27

BlueBelle

I m not one for surprises nor is my daughter (the organiser in the family) so thankfully I ve not had one The year before last she booked a lovely tea for me and my three best friends but other than that not really had any parties for decade birthdays
So my advice would be to ask
I presume you’re in USA as Mother’s Day has been and gone here but then I didn’t know you had villages and village halls over there, so I m confused now
I did a party for Dads 90th at a local hotel but with his say so we organised it together and my daughter in Europe and her three came over as the surprise part he was thrilled and it was so funny ( I thought ) as people were bringing there mums and dads and asking what time to pick them up just like kindergarten and the walking frames and wheelchairs were parked in the corridor 😂

No in the UK, it’s next year. 😀

Lettice Sat 12-Jun-21 16:09:11

Like GrandTante I was concerned that your plan included "open house" for people to drop in as they desired. This could mean your mother sitting there for a long period, perhaps wondering who would turn up. You know how many people do not want to be first at any party and wait until someone else is sure to be there. If you go ahead with your plan, please make definite detailed invitations- when does it start? when does it end? is there an escape route...

Mattsmum2 Sat 12-Jun-21 16:17:05

Thank you all for your wise words. My mums always been really sociable and ran a local coach holiday business with my stepfather who died 5 years ago. There was always tales of the parties on tour both here and in Europe. Mums coming to stay with me for a few days next week so will be asking what she would like to do. 😀

coastalgran Sat 12-Jun-21 18:01:53

I think you should find out her opinion of celebrating a milestone birthday and how she would like to mark it, then go ahead and organise what she wants not what either you or your brother want. Bear in mind our current situation regarding the virus there is nothing to say that next year will be any different to this one.

PamSJ1 Sat 12-Jun-21 19:12:36

My mother-in-law had a big party with relatives and friends I think she would have been disappointed if she hadn't as she has always been a party animal! Happy memories of her doing the conga and dancing away. The only thing that cast a shadow over the do was that she had lost two of her sons when they were 51 (including my husband) but we raised a glass to them both.

PamSJ1 Sat 12-Jun-21 19:13:48

PamSJ1

My mother-in-law had a big party with relatives and friends I think she would have been disappointed if she hadn't as she has always been a party animal! Happy memories of her doing the conga and dancing away. The only thing that cast a shadow over the do was that she had lost two of her sons when they were 51 (including my husband) but we raised a glass to them both.

I meant to add for her 80th birthday

Harris27 Sat 12-Jun-21 19:22:39

I’m not a surprise party fan but would be happy that my family had put some thought into it and be grateful. I had my 60 th just before lockdown a meal with friends one day and family do at home the next. Lovely.

yellowcanary Sat 12-Jun-21 20:47:28

It was my 60th last week - after going to a surprise 60th a few years ago, I told my sister I didn't want a surprise party, but a meal out with family and some friends would be fine. As it has happened because of the Rule of 6, we couldn't do that but I did have 4 meals out and a celebration in work with cake/pizza/balloons smile