Birthday Party Planning Guide: How to Plan the Best and Most Stress-Free Birthday Party for Kids

Birthday Party Planning Guide: How to Plan the Best and Most Stress-Free Birthday Party for Kids

By Nohad

Arts & Crafts|For Moms|Games|Indoor|Lifestyle|Little Kid|Outdoor|Parenting|Play|Teens

By Nohad Mouawad


At my eldest daughter’s 1st birthday, over 10 years ago, we packed our apartment with friends and family. We had 2 cakes: one homemade and one store-bought, lots of balloons, lots of food and lots of coffee for the adults. That party was a celebration not just of our baby turning 1, but also of how proud of ourselves we were for reaching that milestone as mom and dad. As my daughter and her brothers grew, birthday parties turned into something different altogether: from a gathering of friends and cake eating, into an event with very high expectations on the part of the birthday boy or girl and their friends. With each passing year, planning a birthday party for my kids would become more stressful, and meeting their expectations more difficult. Gradually, I learned how to manage their birthday parties and plan ahead to make it a little easier on me and to guarantee a successful party and happy child.

Here are the tips and tricks I’ve learned for having a fun, unforgettable, and stress-free birthday party:

Pick a Theme: It’s important that the birthday party be about what your son or daughter likes, as it’s their special celebration. Decide with them on a favorite character, color, sport, or any other theme and have that reflected in the cake, goody bags or giveaways, and décor. This does not have to be anything elaborate. Between party supplies stores, like the amazing Party Centre (get 10% off with QiDZ), Amazon, and even the party venue itself, you can arrange for balloons, a simple backdrop or even just a napkins and tablecloth that have the design of your theme or the colors. This will set the mood for your party and tie everything together.

Find a Great Venue: If you have a big backyard or common area in your residence, you could always host the venue at home. This works best for small kids who have lower expectations for their party, or if your child is only inviting 5 to 6 kids at most. For girls or boys between the ages of 7 and 16 that want a small gathering of only their closest friends, you can even host a sleepover or do glamping in your living room for girls. The downside of planning an event at home is: entertainment and activities are usually limited, you have to direct and organize the kids yourself, and all the clean up, noise and mess is on you! If you do decide to have the party at home, Heartmade Events can give you a hand with the everything from the setup to the entertainment and food. On the other hand, finding a great venue with the right activities, entertainment and food choices can be ideal for many families. You can usually invite as many kids as your child wants, as long as they meet a minimum number, and the venue takes care of the rest. Sit back and chat with the other parents, while your kid enjoys their fun with their friends!

Agree with Your Kid about Guests: It’s important to set expectations and understand what your kid would like for their party. Do they want to invite their entire or class? Would they prefer to only have 5 or 6 of their closest friends, or would they like to make a list of 10 to 15 friends that they want to celebrate with? Do you have family members and family friends that need to be invited? Plan for this ahead of time and make sure that your venue can accommodate you. Also ask at the venue what they do about last minute additions to the guest list or cancelations?

Entertainment is Everything: The last thing that anyone wants at a birthday party is a bunch of bored or hyper kids. That’s why it’s important to check that the venue has a full program planned for the guests, from the moment they arrive until the cake cutting and the snack or lunch time. Good venues have at least one entertainer who supervises and directs each part of the party to ensure that the kids are happy and behaving throughout. Entertainment can be a workshop, games and activities at a play area, dancing, crafts, face painting, a magic show and much more.

Keep in Mind Your Kid’s Age: Everything from the décor to the cake and the venue and activities should depend on your kid’s age. A toddler up to a 6-year-old will have a perfect birthday party at Funky Monkeys, Gymboree Play & Music or Hive Play Area. These types of play areas offer everything that younger kids look for in a birthday party, whereas kids from age 7 to 14 will be more interested in an adventurous party at Aventura Parks rope course or a bowling party  Wavehouse Atlantis the Palm. Football fans from age 3 and over will have a great time at Little Champions or Footlab. Kids aged 10 to 16 tend to love escape rooms like the ones at Hungarian Games and their friends will find them more than “cool” if they throw an ice lounge party Chillout. If you have a little artist, or a bigger one, an Art Party at International Studio of Art & Galleries can be a great alternative to a traditional party, and the guests get to take home what they created! Of course a trampoline party is always a hit. At Velocity Al Quoz, you can book a birthday party package that’s perfect for kids between the ages of 4 and 10.

Don’t Forget the Parents!: Whatever you do, don’t forget about the parents when planning your party, especially if you’re inviting younger kids. They will most certainly need somewhere to sit comfortably while waiting for their kids, and to have something to eat and drink. Parents always appreciate a good cup of coffee and refreshments, as well as some sandwiches and snacks, as it can be quite tiring waiting for your kid to be done having so much fun!

Have a Designated Photographer: Some parents go as far as to hire a photographer for the birthday party, to make sure that they capture proper family pictures and memories. However, if your venue doesn’t have this option or you don’t want to splurge on hiring a professional, all you need is a decent phone camera and a friend or family member that you can count on to take some candid and posed snaps. Let them know what you want: photos of the cake, of your family, or of your kid enjoying some activities with friends, etc., and have them send the pictures to you when the party’s over.

The Devil’s in the Details: If you really want to make sure that the party is stress-free, you can plan for a few small details that make a difference. Ask all the parents by email or a What’s App group if their children have any food allergies, and arrange for an alternative snack and dessert for those kids. Pack an extra change of clothes for the birthday boy or girl, because parties can get messy, accidents can happen, and you don’t want their day to be ruined by some wet or stained clothes, or some uncomfortable shoes. Bring a pen and notepad to write down who gave each gift, so that you can thank the guests later, or better yet: take a picture of your kid with each friend as they give them the gift and say thank you. Plan ahead to have a big bag or even luggage bag to carry all the presents out to your car or the taxi when the party’s over.

Plan Your Recovery: Let’s be honest, even with everything arranged and going smoothly, planning a kid’s party and living through it is just exhausting. It’s not unusual to spend months just thinking about the upcoming event, and if you’ve forgotten about it, your kid will definitely remind you and keep asking about their birthday party. So, when it’s all over, be sure to book yourself in for some rest and recovery, whether it’s a day at home to just read a book, watch a show and rest, or a day outdoors on your own or at the spa. You deserve it! Until next year…


Image Credits: Image by <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/girl-drinking-tasty-beverage-party_1954546.htm#page=2&query=kid%20birthday%20party&position=13&from_view=search&track=ais”>Freepik</a>

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<a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/cute-adorable-boy-studio-eating-chocolate-cake_29145183.htm#query=kid%20eating%20cake&position=15&from_view=search&track=ais”>Image by user3802032</a> on Freepik

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