Planning a Kids Party?

Arranging a children’s party is a challenge.  As parents we want to make the party memorable and special for our children.  Sometimes we forget about why we are having the party but rather focus on how to impress the family and friends who will be there. You know who you are… Focus on the child!!  After all, we are celebrating his / her birthday!

I find that children’s parties need not be ‘over the top’.  Children are easy to please, depending on the age group.

For kids younger than 6 years old, don’t expect anyone to be seated at a table, eat from a plate or use a serviette (any item of clothing will do, even yours).  All they are interested in is having fun, and maybe grab a snack or a juice while on the run.  Trust me on this! 

Try doing a Cost / Benefit analysis…..Hire tables, chairs, table cloths, chair covers and bows.  Add to that the themed plates, cups, hats, serviettes.  Compare that to a simple table of kid friendly eats, a jumping castle (in summer) and maybe some entertainment (puppet show, magician, clown).  A huge difference in cost!

For my son’s 4th birthday in June, I had to decide on how to keep the kids entertained.  Being winter with a strong possibility of rain on the day, I opted for a magician, some colouring books and crayons and a table with snacks.  Needless to say the magician was a hit! The snacks hardly touched, and some little guests were colouring intensely.  Of course the adults had lots to eat.  But that’s another topic altogether.

 When they’re older, it gets better.  No need to entertain adults.  Kids are dropped off and collected.  Wonderful!  You don’t have to dress up, put on a smile and pretend that life is wonderful!!!

If you are fortunate enough to have had summer babies and have a swimming pool, then that’s all you need for a memorable day. A pool party!  Kids are in a confined space; don’t eat much, keep in mind that the noise levels can get quite high, especially with lots of girls around – any age!  Don’t stress, pour yourself a glass of wine, sit down, put your feet up and relax.  It will all be over soon 💋

Party Packs are not essential; again this depends on the age group.  (Although I have found that even the older ones also enjoy the special surprise departing gift.)  Don’t overdo with sweets.  Parents may have very differing opinions on what they allow their children to eat.  A juice, cupcake and a toy are sufficient.  They only want the toy in any case… 

 Questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is my budget?  How much can I afford to spend on this party?
  2. Will I be doing the catering myself? Can be hectic if you’re planning on making things that need lots of preparation or baking.
  3. Do I need to hire entertainment?
  4. What will the weather be like on the day? Check the weather forecast for the week leading up to the party, before you start paying for the pony rides or hire that jumping castle.
  5. How many children will be there?  Send invitations about a month in advance.  You should have a good idea of the numbers by about 2 weeks before you need to start shopping.  These days we have awesome ways to communicate.  Electronic invites can be sent via Email or Whatsapp, so this would be the most cost-effective way of sending them out.
  6. Do I need to cater for adults as well? Probably, if the guests are younger than 6 years old.

Will I need to hire a venue?  Only if your home will not accommodate the party.  This can be a better option if you are using one of the popular party places available.  However, they very rarely will cater for adults like you would at home.