How to Plan a Child’s Birthday Party

OK, you have now successfully planned a party for adults, so you have the experience and battle scars to plan your first children’s party. That’s a bit of an exaggeration, of course, though if you have ever participated in kiddie birthday parties before, you know that there is no such thing as rest: you have to be on and alert from the time the first child arrives to the second the last one heads out the door.

OK, let’s get started:

Pick a Theme

You can stage any old birthday party, but having a theme tends to make the kids more engaged. It can be anything under the sun, though you should definitely involve the main child in the decision making process.

How Many Guests?

Logistics are key here: how many adults will there be to supervise? Don’t allow so many children that you can’t adequately keep a handle on things. Have at least one adult for every five children.

Entertainment

If you are doing an activity like bowling or going to a movie, you might want to book some form of entertainment. Decide on what kind as soon as possible and book immediately; that way, if there is a cancellation, you can find someone else.

Plan the Day

It can be tough to have little children following a schedule, but do your best to plan the day so that everything happens in its proper order at an appropriate time. For example, you don’t want to be opening presents right when the clowns arrive.

Make Sure Everything is Ordered

Have you ordered the food? What about the party favors? Napkins, hats, and other things for the table? Don’t forget the cleaning supplies!

Children’s birthday parties can be pretty trying, but they can also be great fun and very memorable moments in the life of your child. If you have everything well planned in advance, chances are it will come off without a hitch.

Quotes on Party Planning

How is the party planning coming along? As a follow-up to my last post, here are some fun quotations about parties and party planning that will help to make you smile while making all of those preparations:

“I believe when life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade…and try to find someone whose life has given them vodka, and have a party.”
― Ron White

“I’m gonna party, see how intoxicated I can get and how many rules I can flaunt. That’s my motto.”
― H.G. Bissinger, Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream

“Telling an introvert to go to a party is like telling a saint to go to Hell.”
― Criss Jami, Killosophy

“Partying means drinking. It also means playing records by Lou Reed and Chicago, which I thought was a city but is also a band it turns out.”
― Ron Currie Jr., Everything Matters!

“It is easy to decide on what is wrong to wear to a party, such as deep-sea diving equipment or a pair of large pillows, but deciding what is right is much trickier.”
― Lemony Snicket, The Slippery Slope

“I always think the opening moments of a party are the hardest, before everyone has had enough to drink.”
― Stephanie Clifford, Everybody Rise

“Nudist Colony Halloween parties are especially scary. They give the word “moon” a new cruel meaning.”
― Ray Palla, H: Infidels of Oil

“The easiest way to be the prettiest girl at a party is to rig the guest list.”
― Matshona Dhliwayo

“Friends will always be there for the party. REAL friends will be there after the party…”
― Bray Love

“I can party like a twenty-four-year-old but it takes me almost a week to recover.”
― Amy Poehler

“When you’re the most happening person at the party, it’s time to leave”
― Kelly Cutrone, If You Have to Cry, Go Outside: And Other Things Your Mother Never Told You

How to Overcome Your Fear of Party Planning

Everyone loves parties. Well, not everyone. Planning them can be quite stressful because you want to do well by your guests and have everything moving smoothly and organically.

Do you get stressed out when asked to organize a party? It used to be a major source of anxiety for me, but these tips helped me to calm down and actually look forward to this social role:

  • Plan, plan, and plan. Like any situation, the more you know going in, the smoother everything will run. How many people will be coming? Is there a theme? Do you need to send out invitations? What kind of drinks do you plan on serving? What kind of food do you need? Do any of the guests have food allergies that you need to think ahead about? If you are not having the party at your place, where will it be held and how soon do you need to book it? Thoroughly plan out as many details as possible and you will not be unpleasantly surprised.
  • Start small. Very few of us are thrust into the role of party planner. We often feel that it is something we should do in order to reciprocate for all of the bashes that our friends have thrown for us. Just as with anything in life, start small. Organize a party for two or three friends and judge how that goes. If something should go wrong, your friends will take it all in stride and you won’t potentially be ruining the evening for dozens of people.
  • Don’t be afraid to enlist help. If you are starting to feel overwhelmed, ask for help. There is no reason to feel bad about this. In fact, if you are too busy because of other commitments, getting assistance will take some of the burden off of you. The end result will be a successful bash and that will make you feel more confident in your party planning abilities moving forward.