There are a lot of moving parts to planning a party and planning a child’s birthday party is no exception. From choosing the right party invitation to choosing a theme, decorating, planning games, activities, prizes, food, and all the other myriad details that go into putting a kid’s party together, a party for one small child can quickly become one huge undertaking. We’ve compiled a list of all the essentials involved in putting together a kid’s party to help make your life a little bit easier when the time comes to throw a big bash for a little person.
Invitations. Many party invitations are centered around a theme, and you can start choosing decorations, a cake, and other party elements based on that theme. Be sure each invitation has all the vital information such as time, place, date, theme, and any special instructions you want to impart to party guests (e.g. “Be sure to bring your favorite sleeping bag for our camp out party”).
Thank you cards. It’s not a bad idea to pick up some thank you cards when you choose your party invitations. Whether you want to be consistent in the aesthetic and/or theme, or choose something totally different, you’ll save time by getting the thank you cards at the same time as the invitations, and you won’t have to remember to pick them up later. If possible, have your child sit down with you and help you write the thank you cards soon after the party, to help build the habit of saying thank you to the people who helped make the party fun. If your child is old enough, help them write the cards. If not, let your child sign the cards so that they play an active role in thanking party guests for their gifts and attendance at the party.
Decorations. From inexpensive party decorations from your local dollar store to Pinterest-worthy handmade decorations that would make Martha Stewart proud, let your child be involved in the choosing, if not the making, of the decorations for the big birthday bash. It will help make the guest of honor feel as though they had a real part in helping bring everything together and put their personal stamp on the party, and most children love to help decorate, especially when it’s a party.
Games, activities, and prizes. Again, tap into the things your child likes and wants to do at a party when planning games and activities. Whether you choose traditional party games or decide to teach party guests some old family favorites, the games and activities are usually the part of the birthday bash the kids enjoy the most, so let the birthday boy or girl be part of deciding what fun things they’ll do on party day.
Cake and other food. If your child has a food allergy, be sure and mention in your invitations that the cake and party food will accommodate said allergy (such as a gluten-free cake, peanut free treats, sugar-free ice cream, etc.) Many parents will appreciate this information ahead of time, especially if they also have a child who suffers from food allergies. Consider having a variety of healthy, kid-friendly snacks available to help balance out the sugar buzz they’ll experience from cake and ice cream. Finger foods like pretzels or pretzel bites, popcorn, fruit, yogurt pops, quesadillas, sweet potato fries, and dippable veggies can help fill their tummies and keep the craziness to a minimum.
We hope this handy checklist will assist you when it comes time to plan your next kid’s birthday party.