View Full Version : toddler birthday tips

11-02-2005, 12:02 PM
Having just hosted littleman's 2nd birthday party, I figured I'd post a few tips/reminders that were helpful to me.
- Make sure the birthday boy/girl gets a good nap beforehand, if the party is in the afternoon. I know- duh, but it's important!
- Have some quiet activity (possibly group activity) going on as the guests arrive. I had an easel set up, and passed out crayons so the tots could all draw. A great big sheet of paper on the floor or wall would be good too, or blowing bubbles is fun, I considered putting a dropcloth on the deck and passing out homemade play doh. As kids arrived they usually watched for a bit before joining in with the drawing.
- Oh, and don't be at all concerned if guests don't participate. I had a box of toys in the corner and some kids much preferred to pick a toy and play alone. The toys are also handy for a hasty distraction if someone's feelings get hurt in a toddler disagreement.
- Plenty of adults is important! Our party was for parents too, so kids were well-monitored. If you're braver than me and kids are being dropped off, have a couple energetic teenagers with kid experience to act as ringleaders/entertainers/disaster averters.
- Have supplies/plans ready for several alternate activities, so if something's not working out you can switch gears quickly.
- After cake/ice cream and presents (if you choose to open gifts at the party), have something active for the kids to do. We gave littleman a set of play tents/tunnel, which we set right up after he opened it and the kids had a blast. It was great, because they were able to burn off some of the sugar buzz. (Though another solution is to shuttle them out the door as quickly as possible right after cake/ice cream, so their parents have to deal with the sugar high elsewhere!)
- A party theme is fun, but really the kids don't much care. Everything doesn't have to match, so long as it's fun and kid-friendly. I had "Shrek" party stuff and cake (littleman picked them out) but decided not to worry about the food and activities matching the theme. It made planning the party easier.
- Relax! Running our party was a lot like herding cats, but it all worked out in the end and everyone had a great time.

Hope this is at least marginally helpful to someone! :)