Mom-Bassador
Mitzvah Dad Perspective

From A Dad’s View By Gary Lustberg

As I assume to be the case with most fathers, the role I played in planning my daughter’s recent Bat Mitzvah was extremely limited.  In retrospect, this was in no way a bad thing until the actual payment stage!  In fact, up until crunch time, my family was fully on board with a two-week Safari and a “small” kids’ party to celebrate.  Suddenly the small party developed into “if you invite this one, you have to invite that one”, etc, until I was out voted by my wife and my extremely artful daughter.

Unable to fathom or conceptualize the amount of money being spoken about for a thirteen-year-old’s birthday party, I chose instead (like any guy would) to stick my head in the sand and pretend it was not happening.

As the build-up of stress within the house increased week after week, the mere mention of a meeting with a florist, DJ, caterer or photographer sent me traveling on unexpected and completely optional business trips.

When my wife and daughter decided on a place, entertainment and flowers, the need for deposits and a spreadsheet of expenses materialized on my plate. As with everything else, you tend to just say what the hell, an extra $500 here, an extra $1,500 there, I’m spending so much what’s the difference? The difference I found out later is truly in the details.

On the day of the event, the satisfaction and joy we received from our daughter performing her Haftorah and prayers with such poise and grace made us extremely proud. It also alleviated all stress and tension that had built up to this point. To put it bluntly, she was amazing and now we all needed to enjoy her hard work and celebrate her Bat Mitzvah.

Our party went off without a hitch. All of the vendors, who to me were just names on my complicated spreadsheet really came through for our family. As I walked into the room, not knowing what to expect, even I was impressed with what my wife accomplished in addition to working a full-time job. Her attention to detail from the flowers on the place cards to the incredible cocktail hour and the color coordination of the room was truly magnificent.  The food, desserts, gift bags and Ring Dings were a hit.

Lustberg Room Decor Picture

Syndey’s bright orange and hot pink party room was at Bridgeview Yacht Club in Island Park, LI

My daughter Sydney’s Bat Mitzvah was everything my wife had hoped it would be and more. Unfortunately, it was over in a flash. The question I am asked, and keep asking myself, was it worth it? The answer is a big YES!

The lead up to the party, reminded me of my experience in purchasing a new car. The haggling back and forth with a salesperson is not enjoyable but does end with a new car, and when you drive it home, it rides great and looks wonderful in the garage. Similarly, our entire family, our friends and our daughter’s friends had an incredible time during the party, but as a practical person, I am still torn between having made the decision not to take a two-week trip (which would have created memories that would last a lifetime) versus a four-hour whirlwind party. I will have to wait for the video to see it all!

Check out how Sydney’s party turned out here.


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