Ahhh, the vagaries of expat life. I find myself pondering the challenges of having a birthday party for rambunctious but still unaware 2-year-olds in tropical summer heat. In case you're interested, here's what I learned.
If you're going to make your own cake, beware that it's difficult to find extras like shaped cake tins and food coloring. I still managed to pull off an elephant shaped cake for Maurya, but not without several last minute crises. I found food coloring after three shopping trips (black at that, what luck!) but on the day, the pan wouldn't fit in my oven!!!! A friend saved the day by volunteering the use of her oven, but still, because a 13" x 9" pan barely fits in an Indian oven, the cake ended up lopsided. Amazingly this worked to my advantage, as it gave the elephant's face a more life-like anatomy! Whew (not that 2-year-olds notice this stuff anyway).
But here's my main lesson from organizing this party: expect a lot of ayahs. And expect to cater to them as much as the kids. A few parents were able to come given that the party was in the afternoon, which was nice.
I knew the ayahs would be coming- I know most of them and they are a really lovely bunch. What I didn't count on was the ayahs plonking themselves like a solid, silent mass in the sitting room which we'd turned into a children's play area. They sat, so the kids sat too.
Needless to say, not what I'd had in mind.
So if you organize a kiddie party in Delhi, either make arrangements for ayahs in their own space... make sure you have someone in charge of games or activities... or leave the ayahs out entirely by only inviting a few kids whose parents can attend. One of my friends told me that some caterers in Delhi even provide 'ayah boxes' for parties - a takeaway carton that contains a samosa, kachori and a sweet!!
Yes, I know, what a pain having full-time, affordable child care....!