My daughter's fifth birthday is coming up. Every year, we have a big party for her and invite friends and family. We try to do something that the kids will really enjoy. Last year, we had a "unicorn" that graciously gave rides to children and this year we are springing for a water/jump bounce house. We try to go all out for birthdays because you never know when it will be your last... Morbid? Maybe! But, that's just my philosophy. It's the only day of the year that's all yours. So, CELEBRATE IT!

One of the conundrums I run into every year for birthdays and even Christmas is the question of - "what does she want" from friends and family. It's fair... we want to get loved ones something fun and usable for a gift. And, we want our gift to them to be special. I spend WAY too long trying to search out the perfect birthday and Christmas gifts because I do want them to enjoy it!

In the past, I have gone to places like Toys 2 Treasure and created a gift registry for my daughter for Christmas and given it to family. It's easier for them and Santa to get just the right thing without duplicates. AND they gift wrap for FREE. HELLO! YES.

But, I still get the question from friends - what does she want? And, she's really into Batgirl which isn't offered at Toys 2 Treasure. So, I made one at Target. I've always been hesitant to hand out a gift registry to friends. The most important thing to me is that Ava has a special day and everyone has a good time. To me, gifts are secondary. Not a necessity AT ALL. But, if a registry makes life easier for people, I'm all for that too. In fact, I WISH more of my daughter's friends had the registry! I don't have time to figure out what they want!

So, I've decided that family GETS the registry. In fact, they've already gotten it because they are family and I'm not worried about offending them. We love each other no matter how tacky we are. And, if someone asks, I'll send the registry along. Otherwise, we will be grateful for whatever they bring, or if they just bring themselves, we'll be ecstatic for that too.

So, what are YOUR thoughts?

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