When children are younger, their birthday is the most important date of the year. The cake, the presents and the party, everything needs to be grand, and the wishes get more and more extreme every year. Every parent wants their child to have a perfect birthday, but how do we actually make that happen? How do we give our child everything they want, without spending all of our savings? And how can we guarantee that the party will go exactly according to the plan? There is no definite answer, but there are definitely some things that we can do to improve the chances of a good outcome.
1. Consult with your child
No matter how young, if your child can speak, they probably have an opinion and know what they want for their party. However, there are a few important things you should try to explain to your child before asking them what they want.
2. Talk about money
Don’t literally tell your child about finances and money struggles, but explain to them that we can’t always get exactly what we want, and that sometimes we need to compromise – but that doesn’t mean we can’t have fun!
3. Hold them accountable
If your child is old enough to be reasoned with, then you can absolutely hold them accountable for their choices. If they say that they want a specific theme for their party, and they talk about nothing but that for a month just to change their mind one day before the party – explain to them that they had already chosen a theme, and that they can do the other one next year. Don’t rub it in their face or make a huge deal out of it, just convince them that the party will still be fun no matter the theme.
4. Plan ahead, but stay flexible
Children are unpredictable, to say the least. You have to have a lot of entertainment prepared, but still be ready to let them play on their own if that is what they want. You can offer a huge variety of food, but if all of the children want one particular dish, be ready to run to the store to get more of that one thing. When it comes to children, you always have to adapt to the situation at hand. You can book a professional entertainer, but if the children don’t respond to them well, then you have to be ready to pay the person and ask them to leave.
5. Don’t do everything alone
There are a few ways in which you can make the planning process easier. The first one is – delegate. You are not a super-human and two heads will always be better than one. Ask some family members or close friends to help you prepare the venue and food, and they can help you with the kids at the party as well. The other way to make it easier is to have the party at a professional venue. Hire a laser tag arena, an amusement centre, a trampoline park or a part of the local zoo. You will have professionals taking care of the food, drinks and entertainment, and all you’ll need to do is relax and have fun with your kid.
At the end of the day, no matter how it goes, you will go through the same process just 12 short months later, so learn from experience and prepare for the next time. Remember to take a lot of pictures and give your kid a lot of hugs. They might remember that day only from the pictures, but you still want to make sure that they are happy and that they spend the day smiling – not only because of the presents, but because of all the people who will come to share the special day.