I get a lot of questions in regards to kids parties as well as a lot of requests from moms asking me to plan their child’s birthday party. Unfortunately, I am no longer in the party planning business but instead wanted to make this beginner’s guide on how to plan a successful kids party without loosing your hair. I know how stressful it can get trying to remember every detail and the desire to want to make your child’s special day one to remember. I hope this guide helps other parents feel a little more comfortable and prepared when planning and hosting their child’s party. After all, the goal is to have fun and make memories!
DETERMINE A BUDGET
After choosing a date for your party, the very next thing you want to do is determine what your budget is and try to stick to it as much as possible. The worst thing is seeing yourself the week before the party with all of these unpaid expenses and not having enough saved up for it all. Also, setting a realistic budget is important as you don’t want to get in debt. It is a kids party after all!
CHOOSE A THEME
I always tell people that I’m really not creative, I am just really good at putting ideas together. To do this, I use Pinterest and I make a board specifically for the birthday party. I then search for ideas for my theme and pin them all to my wall. If I am having a hard time coming up with a theme I start by searching something more vague such as “boys creative parties”.
GIVE YOURSELF TIME TO RESEARCH AND PURCHASE
Months before the party I start researching for my favorite ideas on Pinterest. I look at local party stores, online party websites, Etsy, as well as determine if either I or someone I know can make some of the party decorations and things I need and want. I also check websites such as EBAY and Mercari as many moms resell their birthday supplies in great condition after their party is over. When I find a good deal, or something I just have to have, I purchase it and put it away in designated party boxes and luggage. Putting everything in boxes and luggage helps to not loose or forget anything, as well as it makes it easier to transfer to the venue the day of the party.
LISTS, LISTS, LISTS
Make a list of all party supplies needed and keep it with you when doing your shopping. Below is a template of a party planning checklist. This is how I make my lists for each party I host. Of course you don’t have to have everything I have listed here, and everyone’s needs are different so your list may look a lot different than mine. I am sharing this in hopes that it helps others stay organize and remember all of those little tiny details.
Also, make a to do list of things you need to book and order months in advance (venue, entertainers, cake, etc). I also make lists of things I need to do the week before, the day before and the day of.
RECRUIT YOUR TEAM
Recruit a team of friends and family members that you know are reliable and willing to help. Designate different tasks that they can help take off your hands (especially the day of). Also determine your decoration and set up team (at least two other people). If renting a venue, don’t forget to contact them to find out how soon you are able to go in and decorate. This will help release your stress greatly.
So to recap…
- Determine a date
- Determine a budget
- Choose a theme
- Give yourself time to research and purchase
- Create multiple lists
- recruit a team of people to help you
- Have FUN and take tons of pictures. The day really goes by fast!