Now What?

Dear Jewish Fairy Godmother:

I am planning a surprise party for one of my best friends, a week
before her 50 th birthday. I’ve been planng it for months, along with her
other two best friends and her mother, who’s flying in for the
weekend. We have “girls happy hour” set up for Friday night; after the
first round her mom is going to appear: SURPRISE!! Then we have
the real party with about 20 friends set up for Saturday night. We’d
been planning this party as a game night for adults (from a box, not
keys in the jar:) even before her mother decided to join us. Here’s the
problem: We told her husband and now he wants to invite all the
meshpocha from surrounding cities, including three cousins who have
five small children between them. The Typhoid Tots (as we now call
them) infected all of us with The Crud From Hell at Thanksgiving. We
absolutely do not want germy children ruining the event, but Hubby is
threatening to blow our cover unless we roll over. Her mother could
care less about them as they’re all from his side of the family. She’s
happy with our Plan A.

Now What?

Dear Now What:

Retrospective surprise party rule number 1: Never tell the husband.
His loyalties are too divided. What’s said in the bedroom cannot be
overheard by anyone, so you’ll never know if he told her, cried to her
about his abandoned sibs, etc. If there’s ever a future event, get the
best friends to say there are non-refundable concert tickets and then
have them come over for drinks before the concert. SURPISE!! But
that milk is spilled.

Your only choice now is to appeal to the husband’s guilt over Typhoid
Tots and The Crud from Hell. Tell him that if the sibs insist on coming
they must must must have baby sitters or the friends will walk.
Strongly suggest that it would be far better to have a family party on
the actual birthday weekend, to spread the festivities around. And that
because the friends have done the heavy lifting on planning and
organizing this one, the family members should be prepared to take
full responsibility for dishes and cleanup. If his family is going to hijack
your party, at least put them to work.