30 replies

  1. No cola, coffee, tea; caffeine is a bad thing.
    Plenty of food, but nothing that has to be cooked; warmed up in the microwave is OK.
    Have extra blankets and pillows around for lounging.
    Get yourself earplugs. I cannot emphasize this enough.
    Have fun with it! Eavesdrop if you can do it without hiding; ethically you have to be visible, but if they know you’re there and still talk to each other, you’re allowed to hear it. I don’t mean this as trying to catch them doing anything bad; but it’s fascinating to get a glimpse into their heads. I found that driving a bunch of girls somewhere works the same way. They talk about all kinds of things as long as you don’t call attention to yourself.

  2. I’m with Vicki on most of these, though warming things in the oven (e.g. pizza) is okay. Snacks!
    Don’t let them near the phone, but I suppose in this day of mobiles it’s sort of a moot point.
    If you don’t have at least five suitable films for 14 y/o girls, get some. John Hughes films, I’d say.

  3. Doritos and Pringles are your friend.

    No doubt my 26 yr old self is very out of it, but suggest both Clueless and Empire Records as the ultimate in sleepover requirements. Also, That Thing You Do is awesome.

    Also recommend a large supply of cheap cosmetics for random makeovers. And lots of hairpins, brushes and hairties!

  4. If you are going to be screening movies, make sure the ratings (if not G rated) are ok with the parents of the girls.
    Make sure you have lots of toilet paper.
    Put them at the other end of the house.
    Try and provide something fun for younger siblings to do so they don’t get frustrated at not being able to join in the fun with the older kids.
    Ear plugs. For the win.

  5. (It looks like you’re in the “hosting mom” role here?)
    Remember that you’re not part of the proceedings. Like Vicki said, don’t draw attention to yourself. For heaven’s sake, don’t go down and say good night. Keep the siblings, if they exist, away at all costs. It’s okay to have limits on noise (including “be quiet after a certain time”) but please don’t have an actual time they have to be “in bed” or “trying to sleep.”
    Ooh! Make sure there are plenty of pads/tampons/panty-liners in the cabinet of the bathroom that they’ll be using, but don’t say anything about it. Just make sure they’re there.

  6. This is excellent – a couple of those I hadn’t thought of at all!
    It’s tomorrow night, so I’ve still got plenty of time to get stuff in (thankfully). We’re going out to a teppanyaki restaurant for dinner, then back to the DVDs and snacks.

  7. Also – possibly more relevant for boy’s than girls parties – TURN OFF THE BASS ON YOUR SOUND SYSTEM/DVD PLAYER. Bass goes right through the house and when they’re still watching stuff at 3am, you will be very very grumpy, and not a Cool Mum when you come to yell at them to SHUT THE HELL UP!

  8. Do confiscate all camera phones for the night, to protect your personal privacy and the privacy of the five participants.
    Well it makes sense to me …

  9. I have only boys and at this moment feel only a profund sense of relief that they are still only 5 and 6 years old.
    Grendels last blog post..Eight

  10. Hee, reading this thread makes me want to be fourteen again for the first time since, well, my fifteenth birthday. 😛
    I can’t think of any other suggestions though. From what I recall, my fourteen-year-old slumber parties involved any movies from Beauty and the Beast to Rocky Horror, so I’m probably not the best person to ask.

  11. Look out for the one girl who tries to smuggle in alcohol. Not that they’re likely to bring much, but it will get back to everyone else in a flash.

  12. My sleepovers at fourteen tended to include concocting awful, yet delicious, messes out of combining every single sugar-related thing in the kitchen. This quickly leads to more noise and roaming the neighbourhood at dawn. Perhaps quarantining the jelly crystals, ice cream, toppings, chocolate, and sprinkles would serve you well.
    Disable your internet. Really really. Or disable chat sites. At 14, groups of us pretending to be one older girl was fun.
    They are going to play truth or dare. If not at this party, at one coming up soon. If it’s your style, a conversation about what is and what is not an appropriate dare with your daughter might be timely. If not, I suggest quietly hiding things like torches (cuts down on chances of outdoor dares at 2am). There’s probably nothing you can do about the “eat gravy mix and coke” kind, except mandate that all kitchen messes be cleaned up.
    We also tended to the watching of movies at 3am, random makeovers using all of my wardrobe and a lot of cheap, bright makeup, and sometimes board games. Mostly, talking about boys was the thing to do.

  13. Teach them the first and most vital lesson of early adulthood.
    Ice, then spirits, then mixer.

  14. I have no tips. I’m just so so glad I am no longer a 14 year old.

  15. [holds her head and shudders This will all come my way, one day, all too soon.
    If Ms Fourteen consents, perhaps a follow-up report about what did and did not work? For future reference, for me, and other mothers of growing girls.
    Deborahs last blog post..I love Emma Thompson

  16. Ah, so that’s what you wanted the amontillado for.

  17. tigtog, just get really drunk as rapidly as possible.

  18. Pads and tampons! Yes! Just what I was thinking. Bodies can be unpredictable. Hundreds of blankets and pillows, and a series of a television show, so they can get distracted by the arching storylines.

  19. Pads and tampons is a GREAT idea.
    I’ve only had time to skim, but we have had LOTS of these and they’re actually very good.
    DO set up the mattresses & bedrolls in the lounge, don’t set up for them to sleep in bedrooms. You and partner sit in bed, or another room if you have one with couch, and read with a glass of wine (or sherry!) (Or gin!) (You get the picture!)
    DO tell them IN ADVANCE that they’re expected to clean up after themselves in the morning and get rid of all chips on floor.

  20. Tell your son not to take it personally when they all giggle everytime they see him. At least one of them will probably think he is cute. They will probably giggle everytime they see Mr Tog too. His job is to look stern (but nice).
    Don’t expect them to sleep.
    Be prepared for at least one of them to burst into tears. For no reason.

  21. From experience, don’t judge the crowd by your own child. Her friends may include kids who do things you didn’t dream of. At this age, activities can go from baking bikkies to gang rape or alcohol poisoning in mere minutes.
    Lock the doors. And windows.
    My first and only 14yr old birthday sleepover was for my sweet sporty 14yr old, 3 friends who we knew quite well and 1 other barely 13yr old who invited her boyfriend and his mates over at 2 am. She went out and got drunk and had sex.
    My girl was freaked out but hung around outside with her friends waiting for MissX to come back, while MissX’s boyfriends called other friends to come by and say hello. Which is what finally woke us up at 3 am.
    Imagine the horror, discovering that your daughter’s friends are drinking on the street at 3am and that one of them is still out somewhere!

  22. Andra, horrifying indeed!
    Yes, I’d already figured that the doors are going to be deadlocked after I go to bed.
    I hope my daughter has judged her friends well, but as you say, you can never know.

  23. Jeez. I haven’t had anything like that happen, except on New Years’ eve when girlchild was at a friend’s place, and I don’t think Teh Secks was involved, although how would I know. Please *don’t* deadlock, because kids equally may decide scented candles or some shit is a good idea. A houseful of dead blackened teenagers, plus you and Mr Tog and the Togster, is not a good look.
    Did you talk to Miss X’s parents, Andra?

  24. Helen, yes – I had attempted to persuade myself that there couldn’t possibly be a fire, but you are right. Luckily the house is small enough that I would hear if there was too much action outside in the wee small hours.

  25. If it is not against your religious belief a ouji board can keep them busy for hours. Anything to keep them in one place and occupied is a good thing. Oh renting a karoke machine so that they can pretend to be little rock stars is another good time passer. Finally might I suggest a good bottle of wine of your and the husband. Good luck to you. Do let us know how you survive the night. I am still waiting for my son to make a friend that I like.
    Renees last blog post..Using Proposition 8 To Teach Children Hate

  26. Well, we survived the teppanyaki restaurant! The most confident girls ended up wearing eggs and rice, and the shyer girls ended up catching everything (I think the chef did that deliberately). They all had a great time, and on the drive home they heckled half of King Street (it was all I could do to stop laughing and concentrate on the other traffic).

    Now they are on the Wii.

  27. We now have a pile of cushions, pillows and beanbags at the bottom of the stairs, and sliding down in sleeping bags to be photographed on the way down is the go.
    It’s safe enough, but rather noisy.

  28. I’m a different Helen from the one who’s commented earlier.
    The truth or dare games are inevitable. Damage control by having a conversation about expectations first is the best you can do on that one.
    Definitely disable the internet connection, confiscate phones and cameras.
    The ouija board is a great idea. So is a pile of movies and something to play music on. Disabling the base on all sound systems is crucial. Locking them in the house is a good idea.
    A conversation about Stupid Experiments in Substance Abuse is probably a good idea. I never did this one because I just didn’t get it, but plenty of other kids I knew tried all sorts of things to see what happened if you snorted or smoked them.

  29. It’s all ended up rather tame, much to my relief. My shy geeky silly-sweet tigling basically has quiet geeky silly-sweet friends. Only one of the four friends who came to dinner with us wore makeup (she was the ringleader in the heckling pedestrians on the drive home) and she couldn’t stay the night because of something else happening early today.
    The three who did sleep over with my girl just wanted to watch movies after the sliding down the stairs was done – Three Amigos, Mulan, Dumb & Dumber, Run Fat Boy Run – eclectic, no?
    No midnight cooking happened – they just snacked on crisps and M&Ms. I gave them fruit juice to drink, rather than soft drinks, which I think was a good move.
    Pancakes for breakfast went down well. I’m about to kick them out into the playground next door for a while before the parents come collecting.

  30. No ouija boards. No, no, no and no. Please. This leads to screaming at 3am, weirdness, and potentially lasting paranoia. One of few rules my father had for me when I was growing up was that I was never to participate in ouija boards, and I’m forever grateful.
    Seriously, the potential for almost cultlike situations as a result – it’s just not something that should be encouraged. Telling ghost stories is one thing – this is another.

%d bloggers like this: