We love a good party and our nomadic JWalking lifestyle seems to make party invites few and far between. So when our son and daughter-in-law decided to hold a joint 30th Birthday party how could we resist? And it was Fancy Dress! Even better. The fact that we would be the only ones over the age of 30, pushing double the age of most people there didn’t even enter our minds.
Fancy Dress Parties
Our family has quite a history of Fancy Dress parties, read into that what you will, and traditionally we like nothing better than donning a ridiculous costume and having fun with other people in ridiculous costumes. Over the years Christmas, New Year, Anniversary, and of course Birthday parties have all been celebrated with extreme and serious intensity by all involved.
Murder Mystery Parties
Our favourite type of dressing up though has always been Murder Mystery parties. Ever heard of them? It’s where you invite 6 or 8 guests, all of you have a character, there’s a storyline and clues running through the evening, and at the end you all have to guess who the murderer is. Brilliant fun and such a sociable occasion. We did so many that we were writing our own scripts and making up our own characters and stories. Hard work but so much fun.
How to survive a Fancy Dress Party
Being invited to dress up for a party strikes fear into a lot of people, we have a few friends who would run a mile rather than dress up. It’s a real shame as they are always so much fun and great ice-breakers if you don;t know many of the other guests. Much easier to chat to Sporty Spice or Captain Kirk than to unknown ‘friends’ isn’t it? The only way to survive then is to just go for it and become someone else.
Dressing up doesn’t mean that you have to go over the top though, it’s so easy to just stick on a funny hat or a mask to show you are joining in without becoming the centre of attention. Great friends of my parents once turned up at a family fancy dress do in just their normal clothes. Except, he had three bread rolls around his neck and she had two pairs of frilly knickers pinned to her blouse. They had come as ‘Master of the Rolls‘ and ‘Chest of Drawers‘. Brilliant.
Shaun and Katie’s Thirtieth
This time it was a joint 30th for our eldest son Shaun and his lovely wife Katie. They decided on an ‘S and K‘ theme for costumes and a room over a cool bar in Hitchin was booked. We met them and others in the afternoon for pizza and last minute costume-repairs before heading back to our overnight lodge, the Hitchin Priory, to get ready.
Jo had worked really hard on making most of her ‘Steampunk‘ outfit for the evening and looked fabulous. Mine was a little easier as I stuck on a false beard, shades, and hat and went as a ‘Security Guard‘. Shaun and his mate Kier went as ‘Star Trek‘ characters ‘Kirk‘ and ‘Spock‘ and Katie was ‘Khaleesi‘ from Game of Thrones. Everyone was really doing well on the whole ‘S and K’ theme so far although neither Jo or I had a clue about GoT.
As more of their friends arrived it was great to see that everyone had made the effort to dress up, makes the evening more fun doesn’t it? Our middle son and his wife, Sam and Tabitha, came as ‘Sid Vicious‘ and ‘Studio 54‘.
So with ‘Spice Girls‘, ‘Steve Austin‘, ‘Subbuteo Player‘, ‘Slash‘ from Guns’n Roses, ‘Salah‘ from Liverpool, and so many more it was wall-to-wall selfies and photos as everyone got into the party spirit.
Two of the best were Shauns Uni friends Sam and Adam, who came as a ‘Sheep‘ and a ‘Kangaroo‘. Very weird and a little unsettling but very very funny. Throughout the evening it was constantly bizarre to catch either a Sheep or a Kangaroo, or both, just staring at you. Brilliant.
Our favourite outfits though, and I think Shaun’s choice too, was their friends Steve and Helen. Now Steve must have had a serious psychological issue at some stage as he came as a ‘Speed Camera‘ complete with flash! Initially a bit odd and a little naff but the more you thought about it and the more you saw him the better it seemed to become. And Helen? Very bravely she stuck a pillow up her shirt, slouched quite a lot and pinned a photo of her husband to her face. She came as him! ‘Steve‘. Excellent. Not sure if he was offended or proud?
A great night had by all which we absolutely loved being a part of. It’s wonderful to be able to share moments like this with our boys especially as our nomadic lifestyle makes getting together a little tricky at times.
It also took us back, way back, to 30 years ago when Shaun first arrived. We were so young and had no clue what was going on and I distinctly remember thinking as we drove home from the hospital “Does anyone know we’re taking this baby with us?“. He turned out pretty amazingly though and we couldn’t be prouder of him and Katie.
13/07 – 14/07/2019