When you have got children, it can be such fun when it comes around to their birthday. There is a side of you that is crying inside at their getting older and growing up, but it is always fun to plan a party. There can be a lot to sort and organise, though. Yes, we’ve all had that moment where you are planning a Spiderman party but at the last minute, they decided they wanted Superman. Children and their ever changing minds! So here are a few tips for planning a great party for your little ones.
First things first, you need to choose a date for the party. You will know this in plenty of time, particularly if it is for a birthday party. Once you know your date, you have something to work around. If you need to hire a venue, you now have something to check with them. If you need to order a cake or party bags, it can all work around the date you have chosen.
The next step is setting a budget. This will help to determine what kind of venue you can hire if any, and how many people can be included. You need to think about including the cost of food, cake and party bags. You don’t want to get yourself stressed out financially over a birthday party. Great children’s parties don’t have to cost a lot though of course they can if want them to and can afford it.
Know you know what there is to spend, you can think about who will be invited. It might be budget dependant; it might not. It could be worth asking your child’s teacher if they are at school for a class list. If you have space for a lot of children, you want to make sure that you haven’t missed anyone off the list. If it is going to be a much smaller gathering, just knowing who your child’s close friends are is enough.
Now, will you have a theme? This needs to be decided before anything else can be planned. It doesn’t have to have a theme of course, but it can be useful for decorating and invites if there is. Speak to your child about what they would like. It may need a lot of heavy suggestions from you, though. You have got to think of that dreaded budget.
When you have a date, theme, guest list and a location, you can get the invites out. It is a good idea to get invitations out about a month before the party. It allows people to get gifts and free up the time to attend. Two weeks is a too short notice for busy families. Make sure that you put a RSVP date on the invite as well as contact details. This should be at least a few days before the party so that you can finalise numbers and make last minute catering plans, although, be prepared for people not to reply and then turn up, that happens a lot! Make up some spare party bags as you don’t want to stress yourself out.
Another important thing to include on the invite is if you expect the parents to stay at the party or not. As children get older, this isn’t needed. When they are younger, though, you might want a few more hands on deck unless you have arranged help in other ways. Quite often parents will ask if they can help, but don’t expect them to.
The last few steps are things like decorations, food and games. These can all be done in the days leading up to the party. Some will just be on the day or the day before. Will you hire an entertainer like a magician or have a mini-disco? Will they just be playing some traditional party games? You need to have a plan in place so you can guide the direction of the party. Some games will need a little preparation too. Pass the parcel will need to be prepared in advance. If you need music for something like musical chairs, then make sure that you have somewhere to play appropriate music at the venue or in your home. It doesn’t take long to sort but just another thing worth remembering.
What are your top tips for planning a great birthday party for your kids? For me, it is just being on top of it all and staying organised.