Dear Blake,

Our boy-and-girl twins are celebrating another birthday soon. They will be 5 and want a joint party. They have mutual friends, as well as other, individual friends. What’s the best way to word an invitation suggesting that the boy guests bring only a gift for him, and the girl guests bring only a gift for her without sounding tacky? We don’t want to overburden people who may feel obligated to bring something for each child.

Signed, Diana

From Baltimore, Maryland

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Dear Diana,

I think it’s a good idea to have people bring a gift either for your boy or girl. But since kids today are taught to be hyper-sensitive and will probably have some animosity toward the person that gave something to their sibling instead of them, it would be best for people to give them a gift that they both can appreciate. Here are some examples. How about a BB gun? Considering you live in Baltimore, your kids are going to eventually have to learn to use a fire arm if they expect to survive in that crime ridden city. A BB gun is ok  for today, but you should seriously consider giving them a .357 Magnum after they become teenagers. Or maybe a telescope. They can use it to determine how strange some of their neighbors are, and it also can be used when they have their first crush on someone, as a very useful tool for stalking. And if you want your kids to make some extra money outside of their allowance, tell one their friends to buy them some marked cards, and then teach your children to play poker. On the other hand, you might be missing the mark altogether. You said your kids want a “joint party”. If they were referring to what I think I was referring to, tell everyone to bring snacks… lots of them. I hope this helps.