First of all, I baked too many cookies. I knew that the actual number of cookies to child ratio was unnecessarily high. But I couldn't stop myself. Especially after I softened the butter.
Then I made too much frosting. There's logic here. Really. If you make that many cookies, you're going to want enough frosting for them all.
This is after the initial mistake, which was inviting too many children, all of whom (well, except for the twins) had younger siblings who were very likely to come as well. After all, I do have two kids of my own, and the younger one is close to the same age as all the other siblings. The total potential number of children: 16. Mind you, we've never done the 'easy' birthday thing with inviting the number of kids of your child's age plus one. But well, I mean, all these kids needed to be invited. Or at least their moms did.
Then there was the disastrous week of illness which required a postponement of the party.
So there was a little psychological pressure to not screw it up further.
And if we assess the success of the party by how many children actually decorated cookies (almost all of them), or by how long any of them spent decorating cookies (Noodle got the record, spending approximately 30 minutes with cookies, frosting, and m&ms at the table, and somewhat reliable witnesses claiming that she was really decorating the cookies), we held a decent party.
But I like other measurements, like how many children cried when it was time to go: at least three. Or whether the children managed to 'mingle' amongst themselves (yes!). Or whether the adults had to constantly monitor every room (no!). And, lovely to experience, whether the adults got to enjoy themselves (yes!).
Final measurement - would I do it again? Yes. But someone needs to take photos. All that cleaning should be documented, as well as its demise.