Inside the Vanilla Box

Think outside the box. Don’t be So Vanilla!” 

I have heard this…over and over and over…  (Not usually applied to me, though!)  Everyone wants to be original and “stand out” from the crowd by being different.  What I have found is that NO ONE is really THAT good. I mean, wasn’t  Avatar just a CGI version of Dances with Wolves.  It drives me crazy…as it does most people, I think…

Okay…confession time…I want to wow the socks off people!!!  I want them to be so impressed with the things I plan for activities and games.  For the past 3 years, I was Cub Scout Day Program Director.  My job was to plan the “fun and games” for the 150-200 Cubs and 100 Volunteers who would be coming.  Preparing and Planning started about 13 months out each year (in other words, I was planning for the next year BEFORE the current year was done.) 

I woke up in the middle of night with ideas…I fretted and fussed..and think I developed an ulcer at one point because of it.  Even with ALL that thought and planning, there were ALWAYS complaints!!!  Not enough games…too many games…Need more activities…too many things to do…  The cycle was endless… 

 The key is to remember there are negative folks out there who only want to shoot you down….and they are not your concern (as long as you have their money in advance!) 

Your goal in event planning is to make it so others can easily duplicate and emulate your ideas…And isn’t imitation the best form of flattery???  Here are a few ideas I have for staying simple and making things WAY less stressful…

  • Don’t Be Scared of Butcher Paper Table Cloths

Make a simple plan with simple crafts, games, and food. Your 4th of July picnic table will look just as good AND BE CHEAPER with butcher paper than $25 table cloths.  Plus, the kiddos (and adults) will get to color when they get bored!!!  But don’t forget the crayons or the kids will use dirt, grass, boogers, or blood to draw on the paper…

  • Don’t Worry, Be Happy!!!

As long as everyone is having FUN…it doesn’t matter!  Freaking relax and enjoy the ride.  Things will happen..and you will need to adapt… but such is life!  Move along and go have fun!!!  In other words, is that  activity worth all your crying, screaming, and elevated Blood Pressure???


Face will never be the Rock Star… What you can be is THE BEST EVER PARTY ANIMAL!  Ok..maybe not… but here is what you can do…  Read books about parties, watch shows…interrogate your party friends…do research because that is what you are good at… then use ALL those “crazy” ideas to plan the ultimate party.  It is ok to NOT reinvent the wheel…

 And if all else fails, call me and I can help you plan… Maybe I should start a Party planning business?…but I am way TOO unorganized and have ADD or Subtract or something like that…(ask Mary my Wife and Sharon- the other Directors at Cub Scout Day Camp)…and that would drive you A-type personality people NUTS…

Then that would bring everyone a step closer to my perfect world… and that will make me smile just a little more!!!


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