Planning a birthday party for your children can be a great experience. You can reflect back on some of the things you enjoyed most about your childhood, or things you never had the chance to do, and live vicariously through your kids. Make sure that the emphasis lands on something that they will enjoy though, and not just something that would’ve made you happy. Pick a theme for the party, much of which will come from their age, gender, and basic interests. Here are a few concepts to get you started:
Get Messy! Birthday Party Ideas
For little boys, think dirt. Little boys love to go outside and get messy all the time. You can reflect this in the activities and treats you make for their party. Plan some outdoor activities where the kids can run around and have fun. You can have a buried treasure hunt or slip’n’slide with a mud pit at the end, for instance. (Make sure you let the other parents know in the invite to pack bathing suits or clothes than can get messy for this one!) Have a clean-up station for when the playtime winds down and you intend to feed the kids. Outdoor dining is casual, so plan on finger food to simplify things. For a treat, you can use gummy worms and crushed chocolate cookies.
Sugar and Spiceâ€¦
If your daughter is a girly girl, focus her theme around lace, dolls, and the color pink. You can even use doll clothes or paper dolls as decorative accessories. Buy lace placemats at a dollar store and use lots of lollipops and pinwheels to round out the theme. Plan a ritzy dress-up party for the girls, and encourage everyone to get dressed up on the invitation. (There’s nothing cuter than a bunch of grade school kids dressed up in clip-on ties and tiny dresses!) Plan a nice, sit down affair for this one, with activities that won’t destroy their outfits.
One way to celebrate this way is to have a tea party. Make it mock-formal, so that the children won’t lose interest through all the rigidity. You can teach them about some of the customs and etiquette that are associated with tea time, and then give them some fun snacks. Tiny sandwiches and pastries are a must for this. Have some hot chocolate and other beverages on hand, in case tea is too bitter for the kids. (Some apple juice in a tea cup will fool most at a glance!)
For the Tweens
When your children hit their teenage years, they often plan parties with their friends, and they transform into a different type of celebration. In the years leading up to that, before they can drive, but as they are already craving a certain amount of independence, there are a few ways that you can throw a great party without breaking the bank or letting them run free in an unsafe environment. Sleepovers are great at this age. Let them pick out some movies, order a pizza, and let them stay up all night playing with arcade machines and watching TV.