Birthday parties are a great boost to any child's self-esteem. Making them feel like kings (or queens) for the day is one of the best (and most lasting) gifts you can give them. But where and how should you start?
Many parents feel more comfortable starting with a theme around which they can organize invitations, decorations, games, crafts and food. Both you and your child will enjoy making plans that reflect her interests — whether it's a sports theme, a dinosaur bash, an art party, a backyard beach picnic, a trip back in time, or an animal adventure.
Guest List and Invitations
You should make the guest list for your preschooler, but once your child is over three or four, he should be consulted. The invitations can be either store-bought or homemade and should set the mood for the event. Older kids may enjoy making invitations out of paper dolls, puzzle pieces or computer templates, depending on your chosen theme. In addition to obvious information like the time, date and directions, include special details like "bring a swimsuit" or "parents should accompany children."
If you decide your home or apartment isn't suitable for a children's party, there are several off-site options that come with obvious advantages (including being able to come back to a clean home after the children have been picked up). For a small fee, you can often reserve space in a community recreation center or local park. Kid-friendly restaurants, gymnastic centers, fire departments and hands-on museums are also popular. Parties away from home usually work better for children over five since younger children may be overwhelmed by unfamiliar surroundings.
Atmosphere is everything. Once you've chosen a theme, use a little creativity to set the scene. Ther doesn't mean you need to fly to the Grand Canyon for a campout party. Kids are naturally imaginative; they'll play along when you use simple household gadgets to transform your home into a national park. Set up a tent, pass out flashlights and catch fireflies in the backyard.
Depending on the ages and attention spans of your guests, outside entertainment could be a big hit. But younger children (those under four or five) may be frightened or just plain bored by a performance that goes on longer than 45 minutes. Before you write a big check to Chuckles the Clown, consider looking for some local talent. One mother was shocked to hear what the mad scientist entertainer she found in the phone book charged for a two-hour science party. Instead she convinced her girls' favorite babysitter to wear a white lab coat and make a baking soda volcano. The kids were thrilled with an entertainer who they already knew and loved, the teenage babysitter was happy to make some extra money, and the mom stayed under budget.
Don't go it alone. Everything will be much easier if you have help — a spouse, relative, neighbor, babysitter or friends who can assist with activities as well as serving and cleanup. This is especially important if you will be entertaining young guests whose parents drop them off.
For brief parties, cake and ice cream is really the only refreshment you need. Many young children look at the cake as the focal point of the whole birthday ritual, so be sure to let them help make it (or select it from the bakery). Tradition dictates that the birthday boy or girl gets the first piece of cake (and that they will probably choose the piece with the most frosting and decorations on it). Consider having more than one flavor of ice cream on hand, however, since young children can be picky eaters and prefer ice cream over cake. Older guests may actually enjoy preparing the food as much as eating it, so consider substituting cooking for a craft. One family hosted a Floor Pizza Party by putting personal-sized pans of dough on the kitchen floor (one for each guest) and letting the kids put on sauce, cheese and other toppings. (Pepperoni, mushrooms and other vegetables make great eyes and noses for pizza people.) As with all aspects of party planning, try to give familiar favorites a personal twist, turning chicken wings into dinosaur wings for a prehertoric feast or serving chicken drumsticks for an orchestra party.
You don't need to spend a lot of money to have a successful party. This is a party for your child and her friends — not for other parents. Save the fireworks display for your next adult gala. The kids just want to play. Controlling expenses also means that you should not feel obligated to send home goody bags full of expensive toys. While some stickers or a craft make nice souvenirs, most parents agree that it's time to start saying no to elaborate party favors.
Dealing with Siblings
It's the birthday kid's big day but that doesn't mean you can ignore her brothers and sisters. While you may want to arrange for siblings to go play at another friend's house, many kids don't want to miss out on the action at home. If that's the case, allow the sibling to invite one special friend. They can either play in another room or help out with the party (as coat-takers, present-collectors, guest-greeters, or waiters).
Expect the Unexpected
The hardest thing to plan for at any birthday party is the unexpected. Here's what you can do to keep chaos at bay:
- Be prepared for meltdowns. An adult helper can take a distraught child aside while the rest of the group continues celebrating.
- Stock band-aids, ice and tissue.
- If parents are dropping off children, be sure you know about any food allergies or relevant medical conditions.
- If you have pets, it's best to keep them separate from the guests. Include them in your family celebration — but know that some children are allergic to or afraid of even the most gentle animals. Similarly, many pets are afraid of small children who may not know that it's a bad idea to pull tails or step on paws.
Organizing a party, for example a Birthday party, is something not as easy as it appears. For instant, when you turn 21 everyone would want to have that special event to be memorable. Those special days are not ordinary days or any ordinary party that you just invite some friends over. Making a real party need a lot of skills more than people would think, especially when youÐ²Ð‚™re totally lost. Here are the options you can choose to throw a special occasion.
First pick a special day to have this big party of yours. Most people would go for a beautiful Saturday evening. After picking the important date, within couple hours you should then find a secret place where you can have some fun without getting busted. Some people would throw one on their property right at home and other could rent a hotel room. Others could rent out a club or a bar, that is, if they have the bling bling for it. Once that is accomplished, you are good to further proceed. Next on the list would be a theme for the party. Many pick a color theme, where everyone who is invited must wear that certain color to be allowed in. Even a holiday theme would be a good one since Christmas is near, which implies that everyone needs to wear something contributing to that holiday.
Next on the agenda is very important. Some people would actually get frustrated with this topic. The invitation list is what everyone needs to have to even throw any party. Deciding who to invite and who not to invite is something up to that person, especially, when it comes to a formal party. You must make V.I.P. list of course. Remember, this is just a certain type of party. If you are throwing a Birthday party, on the other hand, all your friends would probably be considered as V.I.P. to you. After finishing those plans, you must now use some of your creativity. Decorating is just as important as the theme. It is mostly based on that personÐ²Ð‚™s creativity and talent. Pretend that we are throwing a party at this gigantic house right now and the theme is green. You would, basically, flip the house upside down and turn every inch of it like a jungle. That is very talented of a person if they could do that by themselves.
Food is definitely a Ð²Ð‚ÑšmustÐ²Ð‚Ñœ on this list. Since it is a big party, you wouldnÐ²Ð‚™t want to make your own nasty food so your guest would complain all night especially when you