When was the last time you had a pabitin in your home? pabi1 They are easy, economical and a serious favorite among kids! Every Christmas I try to put out several pabitins at the staff party where there are at least a dozen kids present. Earlier in the year, I hit the toy section of Divisoria and load up on all kinds of goodies, price doesn’t really matter, but volume and size does. In a pinch, I can do the same buying in the toy section of Landmark Department Store for just a little more than Divisoria. Then I buy two or three of those disposable pabitin bamboo frames from Shoemart or Landmark and get a whole bunch of colored crepe paper.

To make, just hang the toys/prizes/goodies with thin string (it must break off when pulled), and make sure to hang the prizes at different levels so it is easier pabi2for kids of all sizes to grab something. Then add some strips of crepe paper to make the pabitin more colorful and festive and to confuse the kids and make it a little tougher to grab what they want. I then hang the pabitins from large trees in the back yard so the kids get a glimpse of the stuff and their excitement is heightened. When the pabitins are finally lowered, the mad frenzy occurs, and frankly, if the kids are unruly you could get elbowed! I avoid this by only assigning 5-6 kids per pabitin for maximum enjoyment and minimal black eyes… Another Filipino party favorite from childhood was the palayok filled with candy. I distinctly remember cracking one at a party and a huge chunk of pottery fell smack on my head…probably a good reason why this party favorite has really fallen out of favor. On another occasion, I made a piñata for my daughter’s birthday party but I made the paper mache so strong none of the kids could break through it! Ah well, if only to give you a fleeting moment down childhood memory lane…


10 Responses

  1. Having pabitins in children’s parties somehow adds festive feeling to the whole occasion. I was like a mini fiesta.I used to make them during my 2 daughters’ birthdays but it was not their favorite kind of game cuz the bigger boys were kind of rowdy. The palayok was also not too popular cuz the mothers were afraid that the kid with the bat might lose his way and hit the other kids who are all on the sides waiting for that magical moment when the palayok would break and candies of all kinds would spill out. Stiil it was fun with all the screaming and shouting of the kids.It’s down memory lane for me….

  2. “the mothers were afraid that the kid with the bat might lose his way and hit the other kids who are all on the sides waiting for that magical moment when the palayok would break and candies of all kinds would spill out”

    haha. but this is part of the fun!! you couldn’t get too near too soon, ‘coz then u might get hit. :) in the past, we needed some adults on the side w a monobloc chair or other bat to parry the missed hits of the kid. too bad that “hit the pot”, as we called it, has fallen out of favor. over worried mommies are no fun! >:P

  3. the pabitin is the yaya’s (and some overly eager mother, tita,lola…) favorite game. I have been to a lot of children’s parties where the aforementioned still have the nerve to join the fray during “pabitin” time. horrible! Well you might smell some justification that they just did it for their children who could not have a fair chance of grabbing a goodie. I think congress should look into this matter.

  4. We had pabitins and palayoks last month on my baby’s first birthday party, and the fun that they all brought to the proceedings was priceless – the more than P2,000 we spent for toys and stuff at Alexis at Tutuban was a real bargain. The kids were all bundles of energy up until twilight, and all waited in line for each pabitin and each palayok.

    But over-worried moms or not, the danger is a fact, just as well. Good thing nothing untoward happened when the kids were at the palayoks, but for the last pot, with the water and coins, my husband decided a daddy should have the privilege, and all daddies fell in line. When the pot was finally hit, a small shard flew forward and hit the forehead of a cousin ten meters away, producing a deep bloody gash that took ten stitches to close in the hospital. What a way to end a kiddie party. Good thing we saved the pabitins for last and they saved the day.

  5. i agree that pabitin and palayok games are fun but kinda dangerous to small kids and girls.. boys are really wild when it comes to pabitins as well as some yaya and moms

  6. have been a long-time lurker but now i really have to comment.. yayas and moms and dads and titas who go crazy during pabitin time in kiddie parties are mean! hahahaha so when my kids have parties, i usually have a pabitin specially for grown-ups…i hang cheap-o cellphone accessories, hair trinkets, cheap tools from china etc. all bought from divisoria. the adults LOVE it.

  7. Nice post! Brings back memories of childhood.

    I always thought that pabitin was much better as a party game for kids than either the palayok or the piñata. Palayok exposes kids to falling shards of ceramic, while most store-bought piñatas are so indestructible that half the time the kids need an adult to whack the thing open. Yep, pabitin rules! :-)

  8. I find “pabitin” fun and exciting in kids parties, especially when there are kids who cry because they didn’t get what they want…

  9. I miss this so much! Whenever a relative of our celebrates his or her birthday we always have this “palaro” with my cousins. It’s loaded with Chicadee’s (dunno the exact spelling), Whistle Joy (a candy and a whistle all in one!), the plastic GI Joe’s with plastic parachutes, coins (remember those HUGE one peso and two peso with 10 sides? they HURT!) My goal was to break the plastics filled with coins at the peak of the pabitin (My dad carries me to reach this) and just look at how my cousins and even my tito’s and tita’s scramble for just about anything. Nostalgia

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