I can hardly believe that my little baby is going to be three years old in October. My sister was just in town, and was asking me if I'd started planning his birthday party yet? I told her that I'd been so busy that I hadn't given it much thought, though in years past, I would have already had his party planned out by now! I still have some time to plan, but have a few simple steps that I try to follow to keep the party planning simple.
Select a fun theme and decorate with items you may already own...
Select a Theme
Choose a simple theme for your child's party. It can be as generic as cars and trucks or as specific as a special Disney princess. We have used a jungle theme, and a Cat in the Hat theme for Balian's past birthday parties. Both themes were great fun to put together, and ones that Balian truly enjoyed!
Keep the Guest List Simple
Until your child is school-aged, there's no need to invite every Tom and Molly from church, day care, play group, etc. Keep the party guest list small, and invite friends and family who you'd really like to celebrate your child's special day with. If you turn the get together into a huge party, you'll just wind up stressed and you won't be able to enjoy seeing your little one enjoy their party.
Get the Invites Out
A lot of people are skipping the formal invitations these days when it comes to parties, but trust me, you'll want to have these special party invitations as keepsakes years down the road. They're wonderful to include in scrapbooks and baby books. We found some wonderful designs at Little One Prints. Be sure to select an invitation that reflects the theme of the party, and to include the five W's: Who, What, When, Where and Why. Send the invitations out early, but not too early. Two to three weeks before the party date should be plenty of notice.
Snack table from Balian's Cat in the Hat themed birthday party...
Keep the Decor and Food Simple, Too
So many parents tend to go over the top with their kids birthday parties these days (and I am definitely one of those parents!). This year, though, I am opting for simple decorations and foods. For little ones, there isn't much need for a whole lot more than simple cake and maybe some nuts, cheese and crackers. Have a punch bowl for the beverage, and you could always put on a pot of coffee for guests who'd like a cup. For decorations, simple streamers can be quite striking, and there are a lot of fun custom decorations that can easily be made with simple craft supplies. Add a few balloons, and you're good to go!
Don't Forget the Thank You Notes
Most folks don't send party guests home with favors anymore (not even at weddings!), so don't bother putting together goodie bags, unless you'll have a house filled with children. However, don't skimp on the thank yous! Many people overlook sending out thank you notes these days, but a cute note, which your child can scribble or color on, or even add stickers to, thanking the guest for attending, and naming their gift and how it is being enjoyed by the child will be very meaningful to the recipient, and make them not want to miss your special gatherings in the future!
Following these simple tips and proper etiquette with ensure that your guests will have a marvelous time, and that the guest of honor will have a very special day!
What are some of your favorite toddler party tips?