With three kids under the age of fourteen, you can say that by now, I’ve earned my stripes as a veteran children’s birthday party organizer! 😉
There are so many things I love about children’s birthday parties – both organizing and attending them! (Yes, even though I’ve probably seen close to 100 by now!) I love that it’s always fun and special for the kids, but most importantly (and hopefully) always memorable for the birthday celebrant!
And so, when I plan my chidren’s own birthday parties, I do try to make it special in some way.
Here are my tried and tested tips on how to plan for your children’s parties :
1. When deciding on the theme for the party…
The first and most important thing to do is to ask your child what he or she likes to do, because this is their birthday party and not yours after all!
For instance, my daughter was very particular about her last birthday. She wanted : a princess ballerina birthday. Not a princess birthday… not a ballerina birthday… but a mix of her two favorite personas!
Other times, a theme can easily be about the child’s current favorite hobby, movie, or game. There are two ways to go about it: (1) zero in on a very specific theme, or (2) have a general overarching concept to work around with.
For one of my son’s birthdays, we had a Lego birthday party, mostly because he really loved “The Lego Movie” at that time. As you can imagine, it was a Lego everything kind of event.
Meanwhile, especially when the child is still very young, a simple thing can tie a theme together… like how “strawberries” was the underlying idea for my daughter’s third birthday which was a : Strawberry Fields Picnic Party.
But at the end of it all, here’s what I have to say : the biggest consideration is to decide on a theme that is meaningful. It doesn’t have to be the fanciest or the coolest idea, but it has to be one that is worth something to the celebrant — yes, even if it feels a little silly or out of this world to you. It has to be something the celebrant can look back on with fond memories!
2. When planning how small or big the party should be…
There are the special numbers, like the 1st or 7th birthday, which are traditionally bigger or shall I say for some, more “spectacular” than others. In these cases, you may want to spend a bit more for them (although not really necessary!) or give some extra effort in your preparations. Which is what we did when we threw a Rockstar birthday party for my eldest son — which come to think of it was 7 years ago from today!
Meanwhile, when my little girl (my mini me) turned one, we had a French Carnival soiree! And looking back now, I can’t believe this was held almost 5 years ago!
But do you know our own little garden at home too has been the venue for some of our children’s parties as well? These are for those small parties in between the milestone years of 1 and 7 (and believe me, there were so many!)
I must say that this little patch of green in our backyard has been my practical and reliable backdrop for most of our D-I-Y parties. And it suits me and the children just fine too. This tells you that you can really do your party anywhere you see fit! All you need are just some planning skills and a small dose of creativity! And with a little bit of attention to detail, I was able to transform this plain looking garden of ours from a winter wonderland to a video game inspired camp!
3. When planning for the activities…
As I’ve mentioned in the beginning, the best way to fully execute your concept is to think what the celebrant likes (yes, not what mummy and daddy like!). Again, there is no need to go crazy with the budget. Just keep it simple or go big in only one way — but always be mindful and tasteful in your choices.
For example, for a basketball themed party, I decided to get a friend’s basketball coach for a “Homemade Sports Camp.”
For this party, the kids were taught the basics of the sport : proper form, how to dribble and shoot, plus the other technical aspects of the game. Even non-basketball fans had a blast and learned so much!
Another way is to inject the theme with proven party pleasers, such as art activities and craft tables. This is perfect for small kids who like to tinker with their hands or who prefer a quieter time in the party.
Think of it this way… you only celebrate turning a year older once a year. How special is that?? And as mums (and dads), we all want our children to feel loved, special and celebrated — especially on their birthdays! So do your best in making your children’s party fun and memorable. Make it a day that he or she would gladly look back on with fondness and smiles many years down the road!
Do you have your own tips and tricks for planning your children’s birthday parties? Share them here with me!