Do you feel overwhelmed at the thought of hosting your child’s birthday party? How can you plan the perfect bash and maintain your sanity? We all want our kids to have an amazing time on their birthday party, but at the same time, we want to actually make it through the event without pulling out our hair, right? Here are some of my tips for keeping it all together while helping your child celebrate turning another year older that have worked for my family and me!
Party Planning Tips to Help You Stay Sane
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So hard for women to do, especially moms. But seriously, if you feel as though you’re drowning and can’t keep on top of all the party preparations, delegation can be the difference between knocking the birthday party out of the park and feeling as though you’re falling apart. For my son’s first birthday party, my mom asked me if she could help at all. I had never hosted a party for over thirty people, let alone a child’s birthday party! She made the cake (super cute, in the shape of the Number One, with farm animals all over it), which let me focus on all the rest of the food preparation and cleaning. You’d be surprised how taking just one thing off of your to-do list can help alleviate the stress.
As much as you can, you should really plan ahead. Are You a Pinterest freak, pinning a million ideas for the party? Well, I am, and I can tell you that the longer you wait to visit those pinned websites, the more likely you are to panic and get overwhelmed. Whatever it is that you need to prepare for the party, try to do a little bit every day, or at least a few times a week before the party. I was cutting out Ninja Turtle cupcake toppers in front of the TV when my son was in bed; whipping up spinach dip the day before while he was napping; basically anything to keep the preparations as simple a possible on the day of the party.
Keep It Simple
Speaking of keeping it simple, I don’t think that a child’s birthday party is the time to be trying out a new culinary skill… Simplicity is key! Let’s be honest, none of our kids are going to care if we’re able to make flakey pastry from scratch for the quiche. And if your kids are anything like mine, they won’t even eat the quiche anyway!!! For my son’s last party, I cooked trays of chicken nuggets and had about fifty hot dogs keeping warm in the slow cooker. Cheese, raw veggies, and crackers rounded out the main course, with cupcakes (from a box!) and a Ninja Turtle cake (hired out!) for dessert! I figure there’s going to be plenty of occasions in the future for fancier celebratory meals… and I just don’t think that my sons fourth birthday party needed to be super fancy. Try this super simple idea for fun party food: Dragon Tail Flat-Bread Sandwiches Inspired by Pete’s Dragon
If you can afford it, hiring out is an excellent idea. For example, I really wanted to be able to make my son’s birthday cake this year, but I also realized I didn’t have the skills necessary to make the kind of cake I wanted to. As I mentioned, my son’s latest obsession has been Ninja Turtles, and I wanted to surprise him with a special cake. Unfortunately, I’d never used fondant icing before, nor did I have the time necessary to get the cake just right. So I put aside some spare money and splurged by hiring a local woman to make his cake just the way I’d envisioned. And you know what? It was fantastic and took a lot of weight off of my shoulders.
When it comes to entertaining kids, a little can go a long way – especially when they’re young. I’m lucky enough to have a lot of Mommy Friends, and one of them lent me a bouncy castle for my son’s birthday party. Talk about a lifesaver! But even simple party games like “Pin The Tail On The (insert animal/character of choice here!)” or ring toss are really easy to set up and are a fun way for the kids to interact with one another. And you can’t ever go wrong with a piñata at a kid’s party!
Planning your child’s birthday party doesn’t have to be difficult or stressful. With a few key tips for planning ahead and keeping it simple, I’m sure you’ll enjoy your child’s birthday party almost as much as the kids!