Gerber Life Family Times --- News and tips for familes of all ages and stages of life

Birthday Party Ideas

Planning a birthday party for your child? Here are some ideas that will make things easier for you and let your child know this special event was designed just for her or him!

You can plan a themed party around cartoon or movie characters – there are many birthday party items that feature popular characters. Or you can build a theme around your child’s special interest like sports or dinosaurs.

Once you have your theme, you will want to decide what to do about your invitation. This is one of your most important decisions, because it lets the guests know in advance what a great party you’re planning and what a great time they will have! You can buy your invitations or you and your young one can create your own. Whether you use crayons and markers or special papers and computer designs, you can give your invitations a personal touch while encouraging your child’s creativity.

Decorations, Favors and Games

Decorations help the party be more festive, and one of the basics is table décor. Napkin rings, matching paper plates and paper cups and confetti help dress your table. A favor like a small goody bag at each place can be fun. Put in a themed toy or stickers along with a small treat for a surprise everyone will enjoy!

A welcome sign is always a nice touch and can be used to point parents to the center of activities.

Kids love to run around, and organized games are a great way to help direct energy and enthusiasm. Outdoors, you can encourage games like chasing bubbles or you can organize ball games like relay races or games of catch. Indoor treasure hunts, drawing on chalk boards and parlor games provide group entertainment. If you choose something active like musical chairs or playing with balloons, be sure you have ample room so that little ones avoid hurting themselves on furniture – and don’t forget to safely tuck away your priceless pieces!

You’ll want to have a camera handy to preserve those memories with photographs. Also, an autograph book or board is a great way to capture a moment in time and, like the photos, it can be shared over and over!

As the organizer and host, remember you can't be in two places at once-- you can't play musical chairs, cut the cake, and direct traffic to the bathroom at the same time. Enlist one or more adults or responsible older children to help you at the birthday party. If your birthday kid is very young, chances are the parents of your guests will ask if they should stay for the duration of the birthday party. The answer is yes! They can help with games, pour the punch, and take care of minor boo-boos. If you don't expect any parents to stay, hire one of your regular baby-sitters to help you. It is well worth the investment in terms of stress reduction. After all, you want to make your birthday child feel special and ensure that everyone has a good time at the birthday party. So plan well and prepare to have a great time!

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