Your child’s birthday is one of the biggest events of their life. Now that it’s getting closer, you need to figure out how you’re going to celebrate with and make them feel special.
Here are 11 tips to planning a great birthday party for your child:
1) Pick a date and stick with it.
- Talk to 2 or three significant people in your life, and pick a date that works for them and you. Once you come up with a date that works, stick to it. Not everyone will be able to come, so don’t change the date trying to meet everyone’s busy schedules.
2) Pick a time.
- Does your child still take a nap? Plan the party around her sleep schedule. If your birthday child still takes a nap, consider a morning party from 10-noon or an afternoon party from 2-4. You don’t want your kiddo to be over tired and cranky on their party day.
3) Choose your party location
- There are many things to consider when choosing your party location.
a) The weather is a big factor. Take that into consideration when you are thinking about renting a pavilion at the park or having it in your back yard. Is there enough shelter for everyone if it starts to rain?
b) There are many destination locations to consider. Does your child enjoy bowling or roller-skating? Think outside the box too. There are many great locations in your community that you may not have even considered but would be the perfect location.
4) Choose your guest list according to the size of your party location
- Once you decide where you will have the party, you can look at your guest list. Think about your child’s classmates or daycare friends. Children’s parties are most manageable when the group of kiddos is around 20 or less.
5) Choose a Party Theme?
- Is there a new movie that has your child entranced? Does your child have a new hobby or sport they are captivated with? Go with it! Chances are if your child likes it, so with their friends.
- Send invitations two-weeks before the party. That gives just enough time for your guests to buy a gift and make necessary arrangements to attend.
a) Social Media invitations are a wonderful way to invite people that you are already “friends” with, but keep in mind that you may need to become “friends” with someone in order to invite them.
b) E-vitations are the up and coming trend for sending birthday invitations. They work through the hosting site and send the invitations through email. Works like a charm (if you have everyone’s email).
c) Snail mail invitations. Though they may be considered old fashioned, there is an element of charm to them. Getting an invitation in the mail is like a little present to receive and breaks the monotony of junk mail.
d) Hand delivered invitations. Another popular method is having the child bring the invitations to preschool/daycare/school and handing them out. This is super convenient if you are inviting everyone. If you are not, then this method will hurt other children’s feelings.
- What are you planning on doing once the guests arrive? If you’ve chosen a destination location, this problem is taken care of. Otherwise, here are some ideas:
a) Play games like Ring Around the Rosies, and Pin the Tail on the Pony.
b) Have a coloring station set up with printed coloring sheets and crayons.
c) Hire an entertainer like a face painter or balloon twister.
d) Play children’s music and encourage dancing.
8) Order the cake
- Three days before the party, get your cake ordered. If you’re planning on making your cake, this is a good time to stop at the grocery store for ingredients.
9) Consider if you will be serving food/beverages
- The time of day that you have your party will dictate what you will be serving. If you throw your party at a mealtime, then expect to feed your guests a meal.
- Finger food is great for parties planned between meals. Consider major allergies such as peanuts when planning your snacks.
- Think about the amount of sugar you are providing your guests. There will be a lot of energy surrounding the party; extra doses of sugar may be the boost you need to push you over the edge of sanity.
10) Goodie bags for the guests
- A little trinket is a fun token to send home with the little guests. Consider buying things that are age appropriate yet inexpensive. Don’t plan on spending more than $5 per gift bag.
11) Talk to your child about what to expect at the party.
- Kiddos like to stay in the loop, and know what is going to happen. Let them help you plan their big day, and give them an idea of how the party will flow.
Following these 11 tips will ensure your child’s birthday party will be the buzz of the playground.
Bonus Tip: Gifts are sometimes a delicate topic. It is best to reserve gift opening for after the guests leave. That way, there is no awkward moment when two people bought the same gift or if someone didn’t bring a gift at all.