It’s a well-known fact that throwing a kids’ birthday party can be incredibly stressful. Kids everywhere. Toys everywhere. Food spills. Drink spills on your son’s favorite kid’s graphic t-shirt. Scraped knees. Just the thought alone of hosting a kids’ birthday party is even stressful. But, there are ways to make the party more enjoyable for you by keeping away the stress and maintaining your sanity. Here are some calming tips to keep in mind when you’re planning your kid’s upcoming birthday party.
A disorganized kid’s birthday party is a thing of nightmares — kids running around all rooms of the house, spilled cake on your new throw blankets, and a bored birthday boy or girl who doesn’t feel as special as they should on their big day. For your child’s birthday, be sure to plan designated activities for party guests, whether those activities are a movie night with popcorn, a water balloon fight, or a visiting magician performing tricks for the crowd of kids.
Better yet, give the party a theme so you’ll have plenty of easy, built-in ideas for celebrations. Having a beach-themed party? Try beach volleyball as an activity. Hosting a superhero-themed party? Have each child decorate a cape to wear throughout the day. When the kids are busy working on an activity, you’ll be happy and you can spend time refilling soda cups or serving cake instead of counting down until the end of the birthday party.
Kids who know you, your home, and your family are more likely to be respectful in your home — and you’re able to anticipate the behavior of a child you know well. When your son or daughter makes their birthday guest list, make sure you know all of the kids on the guest list. You don’t want to be surprised when a disrespectful, loud, or pushy child comes through your doors for an all-afternoon party.
If there are some names on the guest list that you don’t recognize, invite the child over with a parent to get to know them before the party. This way, you’ll be prepared for all guests and you’ll know if you need to adhere to any dietary restrictions— or put away any breakable toys in your basement storage for kids toys.
Whether you invite over a few of the kids’ parents, your best friend, or your sister, having some grown-up folks to hang out with during a likely rambunctious kids’ birthday party is one of the best ways to ensure you’ll have some fun. You can snack on some cheese and crackers, relax in the kitchen, and watch from afar as the littles run around.
Plus, you’ll have some grown-up support in case there are any scrapped knees or crying toddlers. So, it’s a double benefit.
Community centers, restaurants, mini-golf courses, amusement parks, and neighborhood pools generally all have rental packages available for parties, which can lead to a much more stress-free event for you. If you host your child’s birthday party outside of your home, you don’t have to worry about cleaning your house before and after, fret over broken vases, or worry about kids tracking mud all over your favorite carpet. You don’t even have to worry about doing a big pre-party food shop to make sure your cabinets and fridge are full of the birthday boy or girl’s favorite snack.
Instead, a venue will handle the post-party clean-up, the activity planning (since many of them have a built-in activity to begin with), and the stress of hosting a gaggle of children in your precious home. Some venues even handle the food and drinks, so you can truly just focus on shopping for your child’s birthday gift and making sure your go-to jersey dress is clean for the party.
It can be hard to keep your cool when a party runs on too long. To keep that from happening, make sure you set a specific end time for your kid’s birthday party—and make sure all of the parents know that end time. The sooner everyone picks up their littles, the sooner you’ll be curled up on the couch in your go-to women’s comfy shorts.
With these helpful tips, the next kids’ birthday party you throw is already on track to be less stressful, which, in turn, makes it more fun for the kids, too. Now, just be sure to pack those party favors ahead of time so all of the little party guests will be satisfied as they head out the door.