Who doesn’t want to see that big happy grin on the face of a child who is enjoying an epic birthday party?
As I prepared to launch parties i heart I took some time to really think about why I wanted to blog about kid’s party planning. And when I had some time to really think about it the answer hit me like a stick hits a pinata – because I want to make as many kids as I possibly can feel special and loved.
It’s that simple.
Being a kid is hard (do you remember how hard it felt?). And the one thing every kid wants is to feel special and loved. And I’m on a mission to make that happen.
Of course throwing an epic party is by no means the only way to make a kid feel special and loved, but it’s the best way I know to contribute to that feeling.
We have a lot to talk about so let’s get this party started.
The Process Begins
I have a lot of kid’s party planning under my belt, and each time I planned a party I got a little bit better at it. I got better by documenting a process, tweaking that process, and then once that process worked – repeating it over and over again.
The first step in my process? The all important theme! You know, what is my child crazy obsessed with today? Which of course is not to be confused with what they were crazy obsessed with yesterday.
The First 2 Questions to Ask Yourself When Planning an Epic Kid’s Party:
Question 1 – What Theme Would My Child Like?
Now, call me crazy but I like to take my child’s input on the theme in to account when deciding, as long as they’re old enough and rational enough (which usually occurs around age 4/5).
Usually I already have in my mind what theme I *think* they’ll like and at a minimum what theme I’m hoping to push them towards – flamingo pool party is way easier than Minecraft easter bunny ski party. See what I mean?
Allowing them to be part of choosing the theme will also make them feel more included in the process and make their special day feel even more special (but don’t worry, we all know who’s really in charge *wink* *wink*).
Question 2 – What is My Budget?
The budget question is going to come up again and again so you might as well get that figured out from the very beginning.
Some people know right off the bat that they only have $X money to spend, and I honestly think that’s makes the job of party planning so much easier. You figure out where you’re going to have your party – and what part of your budget that will take up, and the money leftover will determine how many people you can invite, what your going to feed them, and how much you have for decorations and favors.
It’s not working with a budget that makes party planning more difficult. When planning my own parties I rarely work with a definite budget, but just this year I’ve realized that we usually spend around $500-$750 per birthday party. For some of you reading that might make your jaw drop, and for others reading that might be what you spend on a venue alone.
What people spend on a kid’s birthday party is all over the board. You need to decide what works best for your family.
Where Does That Money Go?
Both of my children’s birthdays are in January, 17 days apart. It’s hard when you have kids who have a lot of mutual friends and whose birthdays are so close. We throw one party and as soon as the first party is over I send out the invite for the next party. Last year we decided to just have one big party. My kids were turning 7 and 5. We had 52 people (kids and parents) attend.
Never again (but that’s a story for another time).
Here’s where the money went:
$150 – Venue, we rented the club house at our neighborhood country club.
$500 – Food, with that many people I decided to have it catered by Taco Time. In case you’re wondering, it was amazeballs.
$100 – Favors, this is one of my favorite parts of planning a party and I usually go big.
$100 – Decor, the club house was really big and I needed a lot of decor to transform the place. I also made a lot of the decor.
$150 – Plates, cups, napkins, drinks, dessert. Whenever possible I like to serve cocktails at my parties.
Starting with a budget in mind will really help the planning process. Once you have your theme and budget you’re ready to move on to the next part of the process. Choosing your party location.