While kids go crazy with excitement in the run-up, and often way before their birthday, parents can feel an overwhelming sense of stress and panic! There is so much to do – who to invite, how to send out invites, where to get the cake, or do you make your own? Then there’s choosing a party venue, finding an entertainer and sorting out the party bags to worry about. Don’t worry, Little Steps is here with the ultimate birthday party guide to help make sure your child’s party goes off without a hitch! So take a deep breath, relax and use our guide as a check list to make sure everything is taken care of.
First things first, it’s important that you work around a date and time that suits you and your family. If your child is younger, say under 5 years old, you could realistically hold the party on their actual birthday whether that’s a weekday or on the weekend. However, if they are older chances are they’ve got after school activities during the week and may have sporting commitments at the weekend.
Whenever you decide, remember that not everyone will be able to come. It’s easier to just accept this than to try and change the date to accommodate everyone, which will never be possible! We would suggest you make sure that your child’s closest friends are free on a particular date and once it’s been established that they are, send the invitation out to the wider invite list. How many you decide to invite depends on the type of party you are planning on throwing. Dinner, a trip to the cinema and a sleepover will be easiest with just a handful of children, whereas a laser tag party will require a minimum number to take part. Younger children will usually want to invite their entire class, but older children will have friends from school, sports teams and after school activities that they are keen to invite.
If you don’t want to have the party in your house, which is always a good option, particularly for younger children, KL has a wonderful number of fabulous places to hold a party. From soft play areas and nail salons, to nerf gun arenas and adventure playgrounds, there are loads of options for little ones, right up to older ones with higher expectations. Just check out our ultimate Party Venue Guide to establish the best option for your birthday boy or girl. Call the potential venue as soon as you know what date and time you’d like to hold the party to avoid the disappointment of it being booked up already.
Once you’ve decided on the date, sorted out your invite list and booked the venue, it’s time to send out the invites. If you know the telephone numbers of all the parents, a what’s app group can be a good way to keep everyone up to date with party details and to keep tabs on RSVPs. However, children love receiving invitations to birthday parties. You can pick up party invitations at most party stores (see 5) and it’s always nice to receive something more personal.
Even if you’re having the party at a special venue, it’s always nice to take along some of your own decorations depending on the particular theme your son or daughter has chosen. Frozen is always a popular one with the girls, and plenty of boys opt for a football party. As there are a whole host of party suppliers in and around KL we’ve come up with a definitive list of the best-stocked that should make sourcing those decorations, paper cups and plates, balloons, streamers and party hats all the more straightforward. Just click here to see where to go.
A lot of the venues will source their own entertainers if needs be, but if you’re having your party at home then you may want to find someone who can keep the kids entertained by organizing games, dancing, balloon animals and magic shows. Clowns always make a good fun choice, but you can also hire characters from your children’s favorite movie or TV show. Entertainers are great as they take a lot of the hassle and stress out of thinking up games to play and allow you to get on with organizing party food and other party-related activities safe in the knowledge that your little one and their guests are having a riot! Want to know how to go about sourcing a good kids entertainer? You can find out here.
Aside from the presents, the most important thing on a child’s wish list is usually their birthday cake! If you’re not brave enough to take on the task yourself, never fear there are plenty of talented individuals out there who can help you out. Choose a cake to fit your theme, or get advice from your chosen cake maker – most will copy a photo you find on the internet. Take a look at our best birthday cakes in KL feature list for some awesome cake creations!
While your child is preoccupied with the cake, their guests will be wondering what they are going to be getting in their party bags at the end of the bash. Depending on the number of children you’ve invited, party bags can get pricey! But you don’t need to go overboard – sometimes just a few token things rather than a load of cheaper party bag toys is the way forward. Try to keep the bags to your theme if you have one, and it’s always nice to receive a bag that has been personalized to your own child – so consider putting name labels on. You can get party bags at most party suppliers – themed ones from the party shops or make-your-own versions from Spotlight or Cziplee. Either way, we’ve got you covered here.
Buying a gift for the birthday boy or girl can always be tricky. Best thing is to ask the mother directly what their son or daughter is into, and also what to avoid so as to prevent duplication. That way you can get something you know they will really like and not already have. As well as hitting the toy shops, you can’t go wrong with books and stationery. We’ve got some great suggestions on where to pick up top pressies in our birthday gift guide.
Parties these days, whether you’re hosting or attending, can be a bit of a minefield. How much do I spend on the gift? Do I invite the entire class? Do I have to stay or drop off? So many questions! While there is never an ultimate wrong or right, it is nice to have some sort of guidance so that you can feel happy with your decisions. Just read our birthday party etiquette guide for the lowdown on what to do and what not to do.