Thank you for your kind and gracious comments about Harris' detective party, each one made me smile and appreciate the fact that I get to share special moments in our lives with you. Thank you for reading.
1. Pick a theme. I could never have a party without a theme. Having a theme helps pull together every aspect of the party and helps you to make decisions about every element. Everything from favors, to cake, to activities are easier to come up with if you have a jumping off point.
2. Keep it small. Our house (and my nerves) are not large enough to have a whole class party in our home. We've always loosely gone by the rule of age- you can invite as many guests as you are old. The exception to this rule is the first birthday party- that's for the parents as much as for the child!
3. Keep the food simple but fun. I love Amy Atlas type food tables, and the past couple of years I have loved putting together a little food table. However, I've learned that going over the top doesn't pay off because the children cannot possibly eat all that food! Those tables make for a great gathering point and for terrific pictures but they aren't the party. The party is the children having fun together and celebrating a birthday!
4. Keep it short. We make almost all of the parties an hour and a half. It's enough time do some activities and eat cake!
5. Plan every moment of the party. I know that sounds over the top but having a timeline can help keep things from getting crazy. I plan enough activities to fill our time so that the children are together and busy the whole time. For me this is not the time for the children to run off and free play (remember that our birthdays are during the colder months so we are almost always inside!).
6. Send out themed invitations. Evites are huge and for good reason but it's nice to send out a themed invitation to get the children excited. Plus, the children don't often see the evite on the computer, it's exciting for them to see the invitation!
7. Don't worry about how clean your house is. The children do not care. Really.
How about you? What are some of your tips for a fun and smooth party?
P.S. The above picture is from Harris' first birthday. The house was a wreck.