Birthdays are a frequent event in this household….. With seven children, there seems to be a birthday almost every month and deciding to have a birthday party with school friends is something to consider too.
Organising a children’s birthday party does not need to be expensive and simple ideas can make the day fun and exciting for the little guests too.
Having everything sorted and organised way in advance is a good idea, including the invitations, party theme, venue, games, food, party bags (if you do these) and of course the birthday cake.
BIRTHDAY PARTY CHECKLIST FOR MUMS:
1. Party Invites
Some party invitations can be expensive. On the other hand you could buy a party invitation pad and just fill in the details.
Or if you are able to design an invite on your computer, you can make them original and as fancy as you wish – you could even use a photo of your child.
Here are couple of examples: A4 sheet of paper – 4 invites per page.
These are very simple ones that I printed on a plain white sheet of paper. Invites once used are either left in the car after taking and picking up the child from the party or thrown straight into the bin, hence the reason why I don’t spend too much money on the invitations.
2. Party Theme
This alone is not that important, however if you wish to go this way and have the children dress up perhaps, keep in mind that it will be an extra bit of work for each of the parents to come up with an outfit for their child to wear to the party (and possibly more of an expense too).
Keeping it simple is the way to go. An example is a cowboy or cowgirl party; my daughter had one of these (quite a few years ago) for her 8th birthday party. The girls came in their denim skirts/jeans, a scarf around neck, gumboots and a cowgirl hat (if they had one).
When it comes to decorating, again, keep it simple. Balloons blown up and placed on the floor are effective, streamers over window frames and on the indoor fans is a good idea too. Balloons on the letterbox to guide your guests are also a bonus.
3. The Venue & Party Games
Whether you are having the party at home or at a venue, this needs to be decided way in advance. Booking a venue is essential and should be done at least a month or more in advance. Most places have their own party invitations and games set out, so all you need to do is invite your guests, bring along the cake and leave it to the party planners to do the rest. However, bear in mind that all this comes at a price!
Having the party at home may seem daunting, but if you have a schedule it will make the party go a lot smoother.
There are plenty of games you can do outdoors:
- Running races
- Lolly or chip hunt
- Musical chairs
- Red light, green light
- Balloons with a chocolate or sweet (natural ones) inside tied to a string and attached to the clothes line – a popping balloon game.
- A piñata (see here for my cheap and easy homemade Piñata).
And many more. ….
Boys on the other hand are easy to please, just give them a football or soccer ball and they will do their own thing.
If wet weather sets in, there are a number of indoor games too:
- Pin the tail on the donkey (or other variations of this game). If you are creative you can draw your own.
- Pass the Parcel
- Freeze game
- Musical Tiles (instead of musical chairs).
Again head over to my blog to see my homemade PIN THE TAIL ON THE HORSE and the MUSICAL TILES game.
Prizes can also be simple things:
GIRLS ~ stickers, coloured pens and pencils, hair ties and ribbons, bangles, diaries, writing paper packs etc.
BOYS ~ toy matchbox cards, plastic animals, whistles, small balls, colouring books etc
4. Party Food
This of course is entirely up to you, whether you want to go all out or keep it simple. Personally, at my birthday parties, I don’t serve any ‘junk food’. I don’t have fizzy drinks and any artificial colouring and preservatives.
I detest it when my kids come home from a party full of fizzy drink, sweets and green tongues. They then are hypo, aggressive and downright painful. So I will not do the same to other parents.
When I do a party, I normally only do healthy foods, no food colouring, fizzy drinks or lollies that are full of colours and preservatives (I get the natural kind). I also normally do a sausage sizzle for lunch or party pies and sausage rolls. The children also will get an icy-pole or ice-cream cone. I never give out lolly bags (to take home), they eat the birthday cake at the party and get a packet of chips to take home instead or even homemade popcorn in a bag (it’s healthy too).
Not giving out lolly bags may sound stingy, but I like my kids to come home from a party ‘tired’ rather than hyped up and on a sugar fix. As for drinks, they get fruit juice or water (none of those cordials that are red or green), writing the party guests individual names onto plastic cups is also a good idea too! I also normally serve up platters of fruit for snacks at the party too.
5. Birthday Cake
Here is a Jungle Cake I made recently for my son’s birthday party (very simple indeed).
The party preparations can also be fun and exciting for the other siblings in the family too. If you have older children, let them be involved in organising the games and activities. Give them charge over the decorating, get them to set the table, have them prepare the chip or lolly hunt. There are many things the other children can do for you while you prepare the food and meal for the party.
So when you are planning your next Childs birthday party; plan out your day, have a timetable and schedule listing the games, meal times, opening the presents and blowing and cutting of the cake. With all this organised, the day should run smoothly, be fast quick and over in no time, but most of all, make it FUN!