The Most Awkward Questions about Kids’ Parties Answered!
Children’s celebrations should be pretty straightforward to plan? A couple of snacks, a few games, maybe a costume or two? Simple, right? Not always! If you’ve ever organised a child’s party, you’ve probably found yourself in a quandary about one or two things, whether it’s the guest list or the menu.
Here at Hooray Day, we love to share tips and tricks to make throwing kids’ parties a pleasure, not a pain! In this blog, we’ll cover the stickiest questions parent party planners are likely to come across. Enjoy!
1. Do I have to invite the whole class?
No of course not, especially if you’re planning a smaller celebration. These things can be sensitive though, so if you don’t have the contact details of the other parents, give your invitations to the teacher to hand out at an appropriate time, or ask for their advice if you’re worried about leaving someone out.
2. Can I request certain gifts or no gifts on the invitation?
This is a tricky one. Kids these days accumulate so much junk that it can be really tempting to ask guests not to bring gifts. If you feel strongly about it, go for it, or request books or something else that they actually need. Yes, people will judge! Otherwise, remember that they only have a birthday once a year, and gifts are such a big part of the fun. If you can, hide some of the loot away to be brought out later on a rainy day.
3. How much sugar is too much sugar?
Kids’ parties are pretty much synonymous with sweet treats. And hey, it’s a special occasion, so there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s great to create some balance and provide choices however, with fruits, vegetables, water and more substantial savoury foods. Spend some time planning a shopping list so that you don’t end up with a table full of ‘sometimes foods’ and lots of upset tummies later on. Your guests’ parents will thank you!
4. Am I expected to hang around at a party my child has been invited to?
This depends a lot on age and how well you know the host parents. Up until four years of age, it’s generally expected that you’ll stay. After that, some parents may choose to drop and leave instead. Never feel pressured to leave your child if you don’t feel comfortable, even if all of the other parents are. Offer to stay and lend a hand – it’ll be appreciated! If you do plan to leave, check that the hosts are okay with it and leave your contact details in case of an emergency. Also don’t forget to let your child know you are leaving, who is looking after them in they need assistance with snacks or a toilet run and when you’ll be returning.
5. Do I need to organise party games?
Under four – no, just set out an activity station (play dough, colouring, sandpit, costume box, bouncy castle etc.) and let them make their own fun! Children four and older might enjoy a game or two, but keep it simple. Classics like pass the parcel and musical statues are great.
6. Should I give out loot bags?
They’re not a necessity, but most of the time it’s nice to have a little thank you to give to guests. If you’ve served lots of sweets at the party then be careful about putting too many lollies in your bags. Little toys, accessories and craft items are perfect.
7. Should I follow up if people don’t RSVP?
Yes, although not too early! Once the RSVP date is passed, don’t feel shy at all to follow your guests up. You’ll be doing them a favour – they’ve more than likely been meaning to respond and just haven’t gotten around to it.
8. Do we need to write thank you notes for gifts?
We’re going to go out on a limb here and say no, handwritten thank you notes are no longer an expectation. Ain’t no busy parent got time for that! It’s definitely good manners to acknowledge gifts in one way or another though, so make the effort to note down who gave what. Taking a quick snap of your child as they open each gift is a great idea. You can then send it to the giver with a quick (digital) note of thanks straight away.
9. Should my child open their gifts at the party?
It’s a good idea to hold them off if you can – set the expectation with them before guests start to arrive. It’ll be hard to keep track of who each gift is from if they’re opened during the party, plus new toys will potentially cause arguments.
10. What if I have RSVPd and it’s no longer convenient to attend?
Let’s face it, kids’ parties can feel like really hard work sometimes, even as a guest. If you or your child is sick, then absolutely give a party you’ve RSVPd to a miss. If not, make every effort to attend. Some poor, frazzled parent has probably gone to a lot of effort, and there’s nothing sadder than a bunch of last minute cancellations that have to be explained to the birthday boy or girl.
So there you have it! Our solutions to some of the stickiest kids’ party conundrums! To make party planning even easier, check out our Party Kits, which contain all of the gorgeous tableware and decorations you need for a perfect celebration.
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