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Helpful Tips for a Kid's Party

 

As a parent of two children I have had my fair share of birthday parties both at my home as well as at some other location. Whatever you choose to do it does take planning.  So follow our helpful hints below and get your party off to a good start.

SELECT A LOCATION...

You need to decide what works best for you a party at home or something out of the house.  Having it somewhere else keeps your house in order and will save you time however it will be more expensive.  Having a party at home either indoors or outdoors is always fun because you can be very creative with your theme.
 

CREATE A GUEST LIST...

When selecting who to invite to a party you must consider the number of guests that you can accommodate.  If it is at your home how many will work and if it is at another location is there a quota?  If the party is outside your home you may be able to invite more guests.  Remember that when children are young parents will normally stay at the party.  So make sure you can accommodate all of the people. Once this is determined work with your child to select a list.  You can always go with the traditional formula of the number of guests is based on your child's age.
 

PLAN EARLY...

Give yourself a month or more to plan a party.  You will need more time if you are having the party outside of your home because the places book quickly and far in advance.  By giving yourself time you can do things at a leisurely pace.   Be sure to include your children in on the fun.  They can help choose the place or the theme.  Have them write or make invitations, select decorations and plan games .  You will find that instead of it being one day event it will be a month of fun.
 

PARTY THEME IDEAS...

  • Medieval Theme

  • Movie/Oscars Theme

  • Tea Party

  • Barn Yard Party

  • Outer Space Party

  • Wizard Party

  • Science Fair

  • Carnival Birthday

  • Sports Party

  • Princess Party

  • Beach Party

  • Mexican Theme

  • Hawaiian Luau

  • Sleepover

  • Pirate Party

  • Beauty Salon Party

  • Construction Party
     

GET HELPERS...


Consider having teenage siblings/neighbors/friends give you a helping hand.  The young ones will love the attention of the older kids and it will be a big help for you.


 

LOCATION IDEAS...

There are a variety of places that you can go to for birthday parties.  It really depends on your budget.  If you are just looking for a room/place to have the party you could consider a park or playground, fire hall, or pizza parlor.  If you would like a place that organizes the party or will keep the kids entertained consider a nature center, museum, kids gym, YMCA, swim club, Chuck E Cheese, IMAX theatre, ice rink, bowling alley, tennis club, dance studio, karate, gymnastics, Justice for girls, Theatre,  farm, orchard, bakery, magic show.
 

SEND INVITATIONS

Your invitations should be sent 2 - 2 1/2 weeks in advance.  This will give your guests plenty of time to respond and will give you time to finalize preparations.  Make sure you include the theme, date, start and end time, location, special instructions, whether food will be served and an RSVP date with your phone number or email address.  If you know that your guests check emails regularly you can send the invitation via the internet.  When parents RSVP be sure to find out if they plan on staying at the party and also if their child has any allergies or is lactose intolerant.

DECORATE THE PARTY PLACE:

Kids love balloons and streamers and they will go a long way.  Put streamers around the tables and in the door way like a curtain.  Add bunches of balloons on the table and strategically placed in the room.  Be sure that you have enough balloons to give every kid one to take home.  Create or purchase a "Happy Birthday" banner.   Use props to help create the theme.   Purchase theme related plates, napkins and table covers.  Make a fun centerpiece.
 

PLAN THE MENU

Keep things simple and make food that is appropriate for your theme.  Don't try and introduce new foods just add flair to the old standbys.  Use juice boxes so that the kids can help themselves.   Remember to order a cake.  If you have a theme for your party carry it through with the cake. 

Food ideas for the kids:

Make their own pizza

Create their own ice cream sundae

Make fruit or veggie kabobs

Use cookie cutters to create fun P B &J sandwiches

Make ice cream sandwiches with graham crackers
 

PLAN THE FESTIVITIES

Plan an activity that will keep the kids busy when they arrive because guests all arrive at different times.  Remember activities need to be appropriate for number of kids attending and their age.

  1. Tag is always fun and will keep them outside running for a while.

  2. Plan deal or no deal with a spin.   Set up three boxes on a table (vary the size and wrap in cool paper).   You will need the space to hide your goodies so be sure to cover the table to the floor.  Hide prizes under each box - some prizes should be nice others should be gag gifts.  Have the first person select a box  show them their prize and then you ask if they would like to "deal or no deal".  Give them the option of  trading their prize for another box of YOUR choice -- make it sound appealing.  They get one time to trade and then move on to the next person. Gag gift ideas: dog's rawhide bone,  old sock, work glove, an empty box of candy etc...

  3. Karaoke is always great -- the kids love to sing.

  4. Plan musical chairs or rug

  5. Twister is a fun game for kids of all ages.

  6. Have them do a craft such as something to wear sun visor, hat, T-shirt or create a party favor bag.

  7. Have a face painting table

Plan some fun games to keep the kids entertained.  You want everyone to participate so try and think of games that will work well with the age group. Have some rowdy games as well as some calm games.  Make sure you use the calm games to wind down the party.  Stick to games that everyone knows or that have simple rules.  If your games can reflect your theme that would be great.  You can rename the classic games to suit your theme for example musical magic carpet for a wizard theme or pin the patch on the pirate for a pirate theme.  Always have one game that is not competitive where everyone will win for instance a treasure hunt or a piņata.
 

PARTY FAVORS

Sending each child home with a favor is always a great way to end the party.  You can fill a bag with small favors or have them do a craft.  It is best if everyone gets the same favor. You may want to have some prizes on hand for the winner of the games.

 

ENJOY THE FUN

In order to have a great party go with the flow and remain as flexible as possible.  Make adjustments based on the mood of the party