Top 10 things I have learnt about children’s parties… so far!

Today’s Top 10 post is written by guest contributor, Lisa. She shares with us her Top 10 things she has learnt about organising and planning birthday parties for kids…

I have always loved social events and planning parties. A few years ago I considered leaving the investment industry and becoming a wedding planner. What could be better than planning this special event for couples deeply in love? Then I planned my own wedding! What a stressful occasion! Everything had to be just perfect, so much to plan and organise – colour schemes, cake, food, guest list, etc. I realised that if I’d been stressed planning my own wedding, working with stressed-out brides on a daily basis was not for me…

I have also enjoyed children’s parties and loved watching which themes my nieces picked for their parties, and once I had a little one of my own and planned her first party, the bug bit and I was really keen to get involved in kiddies parties. After speaking to a number of parents, I discovered that there is a tremendous amount of pressure to plan the perfect party, particularly for first time parents. I decided to launch My PartyThings to assist parents with ideas for themes, venues and suppliers as well as providing useful, fun and creative ideas for children’s parties.

So far I have learnt a number of things about parties and here are my Top 10 tips to remember when planning a child’s party:

1. Plan ahead, be organised and try and outsource as much as possible, as it will reduce stress on the day

2. You don’t need to be rich to plan the perfect party – you can be creative with what you’ve got.

3. Draw up a budget for the party and don’t overspend – kids don’t understand the value of money, only you do and you will be left with the debt.

4. Kids don’t mind how much you spend on their party, their success is dependent on the amount of FUN they have.

5. Parents compete with other parents! There is no need to try to keep up with the Jones’ and most people don’t expect you to but we put the pressure on ourselves.

6. There is no need to invite everyone to the party… invite a small group of close family and special friends of the birthday child. More people = more expense = more stress.

7. Get party ideas from blogs, the internet, party stores – there is so much out there to assist you.

8. Use trusted suppliers that have been recommended. For instance, don’t choose a cake baker based on a photo you have seen that looks nice, taste is important too and who knows if the photo was of their own cake at all! Also, don’t always trust a supplier you may find in the classifieds – they may take your deposit for a jumping castle and not pitch on the day…

9. Don’t plan parties or themes that you always dreamt of having as a kid, it’s your child’s party and it should be planned to their desires (However, you can probably get away with it for the first or second birthday!)

10. You don’t need to spend a fortune on birthday gifts for children – some of the simplest things provide the most enjoyment.

Lisa has been married to Garth for 5 years and has a daughter, Sienna, aged 20 months. Lisa and Garth started Party Things Online in 2011 when Garth was retrenched and unemployed. Lisa loves helping people plan parties and freely gives advice. Lisa also works as a marketing analyst for a large financial institution. Pop over to the My PartyThings blog for more info

Kathryn Rossiter

Kathryn is a South African lifestyle blogger and mom of 2 who has been blogging daily for over 9 years! She writes about travel, health, beauty, fashion, decor and family... but not food (unless it's food she's eaten made by someone else) as she is a hopeless cook. She only wakes up early for 2 things... a red-eye flight to somewhere exotic and early morning game drives. She has just finished an extensive home renovation and would prefer to never see another box again. She's never met a chocolate or glass of bubbles that she didn't like!

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