Caroline Howard and Nicole Weisensee Egan
May 19, 2009 10:55 AM

The Gosselins appear to be doing their best to keep their lives normal, despite the constant presence of pararazzi outside their Wernersville, Penn., home and the well-publicized problems in their marriage.

On Saturday, Kate and all eight children (Cara, Madelyn, Alexis, Hannah, Aaden, Collin, Leah and Joel) visited Party City in nearby Wyomissing to buy supplies for the sextuplets’ fifth birthday party the next day. The children were well-behaved, employees told PEOPLE, and bodyguard Steve Neild accompanied them.

Jon and Kate put on a united front at the birthday party Sunday – one week later than their actual birthday, which the family had celebrated privately at home. The Backyardigans-themed bash was held at a local water park, and the sextuplets’ friends from pre-school joined in the fun. But the piñata wasn’t the only thing dangling from a tree that day – a lurking photographer tumbled from a perch in some nearby branches. The party was filmed for the May 25 season premiere of Jon and Kate Plus Eight.

On Monday, 5-year-old Alexis got to spend at least part of the day solo with her mom, running errands near their home.

Meanwhile, The Patriot-News reports that Kate s scheduled appearance to speak at the Milton Hershey School’s Catherine Hall in a fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House this Saturday has been “postponed indefinitely” because Kate confirmed too late for the organizers to sell tickets to the event.

For more on the Gosselins, including photos and an inside look at the birthday party, pickup this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

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