08 January 2010

Birthday Party Planning


This is not the first time I’m planning a birthday party. I should be an old hand at this, but then why does it feel like this is the first time I’m doing this?!

A week away and all I’ve managed to do are: 1) Send out the invites; 2) secure the venue; 3) book the entertainer.

I still haven’t planned the menu. I haven’t decided what to include in the loot bags. I haven’t ordered the cake. My excuse is that not everyone on the invite list has RSVP’ed. I’m going to make calls tomorrow to follow up.

The part that I am most stressed out about and at the same time most excited about are the loot bags. I have not decided yet whether I will just have one big really nice item or plenty of small nice items… Because we will have children attending who range from 1-10 years old, I want to make sure what they get in their bags are age-appropriate. The bulk will be 5-year olds, but there are older and younger siblings attending, too. Out of the 15 children, only six are girls, and two of the girls are 1-year olds.

So. Stickers? Toys and games? Art materials? Books? Candies and snacks? I am not very keen on sweets, although I am sure that’s what the children will be first digging for in the loot bags even before they are out the door!

I would most welcome any suggestion or ideas that you can throw my way.

Photo credit: Evite.com


Lindy said...

Secured venue - booked the entertainer....you've done more for your birthday party than I recall doing for ANY of mine. :)

*Jess* said...

When I have kids with ages ranging like that, I usually do plastic cups and personalize them with their name using a paint pen. That's something quick and easy to do the day of the party if someone shows up that didn't RSVP. For the 5 year olds, I'd do stickers and something else related to the party theme in the cups. For the littles, I'd do cheerios, gerber fruit snacks, and bubbles in the cups. For the older kids, I'd do something "cool" from the dollar spot at Target.

jen@odbt said...

How about notebooks and either crayons or color pencils or gel pens (depending on the ages)? They seem to be liked by all ages.

Nezzy said...

My grandchildren love the silly putty, slime type stuff. Stickers are great. I know you wanted to stay away from the candy but they love those Pez candy dispensers. Girls love crayons, markers or hair clips. The boys love matchbox cars, etc. I have witnessed many parties, for what my 2cents is worth, they seem to enjoy a variety of small items verses one large item. So there ya have it, take it or leave it, just have a great time and take loads of pics!

Have a wonderful day planning!!!

Aunt LoLo said...

For SJ's birthday, I made everyone soccer-ball sized fleece cubes, for throwing and playing.

For BBJ's, all the girls got "fairy wands" and we all danced in the living room. LOL

For your crowd, I'd recommend art supplies...everyone loves crayons! LOL

Deanna said...

For my daughter's 6th Birthday I found some fleece hoodies @ walmart on clearance for $4. Every girl received a hoody and a bit of candy on the pocket.

It went over very well!
New follower from MBC

Mommy24cs said...

I love doing the goodie bags. It's my favorite part of the party lol. I usually buy things that relate to the theme of the party. Little toys and such. The little bottles of bubbles always seem to be a hit.

Carson's fifth birthday is coming up in February. I guess I should get started on planning too. =)

Flying Giggles and Lollipops said...

I say stay away from the sweets, many parents share your opinion on them I think art material is always a great goody because most children love making things.

Joanne Choi said...

as a parent, I personally prefer a SINGLE gift, as opposed to a goody bag filled with STUFF. That being said, I include a granola bar, some raisins and perhaps a fruit roll up type thing if I am not doing the single big gift.

For son's 2nd birthday, I did books - all different ones for different ages. Big HIT.

a Tonggu Momma said...

I'm with Jen... craft supplies are always good and great for all ages.

Wanda said...

For the last b-day or two, I've been leaning toward one nice item in the loot bag instead of a bunch of 'junk'. But, since you have all ages, you may have to go with multiple small items.

That's not easy - having so many ages.

I try and include a big sucker that they can have during the party. They're going to want candy anyway and suckers last a long time and kids are relatively quiet during sucker time. Of course, no running around.

Have fun planning. Five is a biggy!

Mommy Is Green said...

Planning a party really is a lot of work. It also seems that I don't get to relax at all and enjoy when I'm throwing a party. I guess that comes with being a mom. The only thing I can think of to add to the loot bags are individual bags of pretzels like they have around halloween. It might be a good alternative to sweets if you're looking to avoid them. I'm sure you'll come up with some great items. Keep us posted on what you choose.

Sarah said...

I used to absolutely love stickers when I was a little girl. Or the art supplies idea.
Good luck!!!

Anonymous said...

For my daughter's fifth b-day I burned a CD with her favorite songs. I bought some recordable CDs and super slim cases at Office Max. My total dollar output was about $20.

Jana said...

have you looke on Oriental trading co? they always have things I dont think of, I have 0 good ideas right now, how far have you gotten now? I know I am a bit late commenting...Can your sis make an awesome cake? or does she live somewhere else....my mind is going into party planning mode can you tell? I love to plan parties!

Jenjen @GottaLoveMom said...

Picture in a Photo frame (with all the kids' from the party), I agree with the CD, too!

Alicia said...

I say for the two 1 year olds, get something age appropriate for them, and do something a little different for the girls and boys (if it's not too much trouble).

blueviolet said...

I always loved sending them home with a photo of them with the birthday child. One year I laid tons and tons of stickers and supplies on the table and they each decorated their own frames. That was a huge hit!

To me, you sound on top of it though!

lmaurais said...

A great place to share your birthday party planning ideas and tips is at Best-Birthday-Party-Ever.com

They have monthly contests offering great prizes in exchange for quality ideas and they're also a great free resource for people to go and get ideas for their own party.

Be sure to check them out!

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