On Saturday we hosted our very first children’s party as my little boy turned 2. It was one of the most nerve wracking events of my life so far, far more than when I got married. You generally know what to expect at a wedding and adults will usually behave in a reasonable manner. Kids parties were an unknown quantity.
Well, we survived and I’m thinking of making myself a badge to wear with pride, “I’ve survived a Children’s party!” So after the past manic week this is what I’ve learnt about children’s parties:
1. Bouncy castles are worth their weight in gold! There really isn’t anything else to say, kids love them and one relatively small inflatable kept 15 kids occupied for hours!
2. Kids don’t actually eat that much. I was so worried about running out of food I went in the complete opposite direction and made far too much (and brought most of it home with me!) But they do like a mini cupcake and jelly goes down a storm!
3. Adults do eat quite a lot. I’ve been to few children’s parties now where a big spread is put on for the kids with no food for the grown ups. I’ve taken to stealing food from Baby O’s plate in the past, to stifle the tummy rumbles. We ordered some sandwiches from a local cafe for the adults and within 15 mins they were all gone!
4. A few wines/beers will go down a treat with the adults. My dad went into a panic at the thought of a party where the strongest beverage served would be a coffee. You see, our families (and most of our friends) like a drink so a few glasses of wine went down pretty well.
5. Balloons. A few balloons knocking around the floor will always keep young children entertained. Just be prepared for the crying when one bursts, my son takes it like he’s lost a close friend if a balloon pops!
6. Kids love a party bag. My goodness, I didn’t realize the importance of a party bag. My friends were telling me their kids had been talking about the party bags all the way there, I had previously thought they were a nice add on. Apparently not, a party is judged on the quality of the leaving bag!
7. You can never have too much help! We were so lucky to have a lot of very good friends and family help to set up, pack away, make sandwiches, ferry party goods to the venue and generally stop me from cracking up!
8. No matter how bad/crazy/stressful the run up to the party is and the hosting whilst your doing it the look on your child’s face as they are loving every minute makes it all worth while.
So despite insisting that next year you would find us at a soft play centre party (and you know how I feel about those places), where everything was done for us, I’m already changing my mind. Quite a big part of me loved being the hostess and loved having all our friends and their children together to celebrate our boys special day. Within a day the rose tinted glasses are out and all the hard parts are turning a bit blurry round the edges. I’d better get my thinking cap on and start planing next years party!