Helpful Hints for Baby’s First Birthday Party
Time passes so quickly. Before you know it, baby will be 1 year old! How are you going to celebrate the big day? Many parents choose to have a little celebration for the immediate family, while others prefer a big party. There’s no one way to celebrate, so don’t feel pressured to plan a huge party if you and your partner just want a small, intimate gathering and not a big event.
Tips for great celebration
If you’re going to host a party, no matter what size the production, these tips will make planning quick and easy.
- It’s always important to know the general age group of the little guests; this will make planning everything from the food to the activities so much easier.
- Plan ahead. A good plan will help the party run more smoothly and help you avoid last-minute stress. If you intend to order a birthday cake, do so at least a week before.
- Find out how many people will attend. If you send invitations by mail, ask guests to RSVP. If you’re skipping invitations, call two days before the party to confirm whether guests will attend or not.
- Expect the unexpected. It may be that your baby gets sick at the last minute, or maybe your backyard party gets rained out. It’s always best to have a Plan B.
- Try to enjoy the moment. The hosts usually have the worst time at a party, but this isn’t just any celebration, it’s the first birthday of your child. Don’t lose sight of the meaning of the big day.
- Set a time limit for the party. If you invite children who are about a year old, remember that they tire quickly. So, don’t expect a celebration that lasts more than a couple of hours. What’s more, party planning experts recommend that a party for children of that age group not exceed one to 1.5 hours. Write the start time and the end time on the invitation so there isn’t any confusion.
- Plan a variety of activities to keep the kids entertained. It’s trendy to choose a party theme, like a cartoon or kid’s character. You can also place different, age-appropriate toys within reach of the little ones to keep them busy. Clowns are not generally recommended because babies and little kids are often scared of them. A puppet show can be fun, as long as the subject is age appropriate.
- Keep decor simple. If you decide to use balloons, be use caution as many experts say they are not suitable for very young children due to risk of choking. If the balloon pops, babies could grab a piece of latex and put in their mouths. Mylar balloons are more resilient and secure.
- Don’t forget the tunes. Get CDs or playlists of children’s music and play it at a moderate level to help to create an upbeat atmosphere.
- If you’re going to have a piñata make sure they aren’t filled with candy or objects that little ones can choke on. The golden rule is that any small object is potentially dangerous because it can get stuck in the baby’s mouth or throat.
- Don’t forget about the parents. Make sure there’s plenty of seating, food and drinks for the grown ups.
- Keep a first aid kit ready. Kids fall and have accidents from time to time. It’s best to be prepared with a first aid kit containing disinfectant, bandages, gauze and tweezers.
- Remember your camera. Often parents forget to have them on hand and they miss capturing those precious memories. If you’ll be too busy, ask a friend or family member to take pictures for you.
Ideas for parties with more adults than children:
If more adults than children will be in attendance, here are some tips to make the day fun for everyone:
- Make your baby a celebrity. If you have access to a computer, write up a little story that looks like a newspaper article. If that’s too complicated, print faux headlines, cut them out and glue them on top of the headlines on the front page of a local newspaper. For example: “Andrew celebrates his first year!” Place a picture of your baby over the original photograph in the newspaper. You can decorate the party venue with funny pictures of your baby and give the adults disposable cameras to play “paparazzi”.
- Everyone was a baby once. This fun party game is great for adults. Ask each guest to bring a baby picture of themselves to the party. Tape them all to a poster board and display them. Halfway through the party you can have guests guess who is who.
- Predict the future. Ask each guest to write something festive on a piece of paper, be it what they think the baby will be when he grows up, a funny story about the baby, or some great life advice. You can read notes aloud or just put all in a box as a keepsake for your child to open when he’s older. For decorations, consider posting newspaper articles, magazine covers, album covers, movie posters or fun pictures from the year baby was born.
We hope that the birthday of your child will be wonderful. Relax, take it all in, and enjoy!