Foolish or a savvy decision? Some people, on hearing you are hosting your party at home, will either pat you on your back, admire your bravery or admire your ability to organise, host and entertain a bunch of kids in your own home.
With a multitude of gifts, decorations and accessories available from Party Bags and Supplies, there is no denying that hosting your own party at home can be bright, bold and fun. However, if the thought fills you with dread, then you clearly need our ultimate guide to hosting a birthday party at home.
A lost tradition?
Many years ago, it was a matter of course that a child’s party was at home. Inviting between one to many best friends round for a birthday tea was an exciting treat. Apart from a few party games, loads of exciting running around, some sandwiches for tea, followed by birthday cake, there was no better way to celebrate a birthday.
And then, as money grew more plentiful and attitudes changed, using a venue that catered for birthday parties almost became the norm. We have seen in recent years an explosion in ‘posh’ birthday parties too, with activities and venues that are becoming increasingly popular, but expensive.
There has been a refreshing move back to where the birthday party should be held, in some people’s opinion. No longer should the birthday party be neatly packaged and almost devoid of personality; the time has come to reclaim it – and bring it home.
Being prepared is key
And so, if you are planning a birthday party at home, then you need to be prepared.
- Have a theme
Themes are one of those things that you will either love or hate but, when it comes to a party at home, it can be useful to fall back on.
For example, not only can guests comes dressed in fancy dress and so on, but you can really get to grips with decorating and accessorising your home for the party.
TOP TIP – afternoon tea is becoming an on-trend theme for 2015 and in to 2016. Parties do not always have to be rambunctious and out-of-control. Why not take a picnic and enjoy the great outdoors?
- Make a plan of the time
If you hosting a gaggle of kids for two and a half hours, you need to have a plan for this time. It may seem a little over the top, but planning the time prevents those small niggling problems from taking hold – the ‘she won’t share with me’, ‘he took that from me’ and so on.
- Welcome everyone
Have an arrival time (and a leaving time), but also make it clear on the invites/word of mouth that because the party is at home, there is no room for additions (i.ee. siblings). Only invite a number that you think you can safely accommodate.
The arrival time presents a slight hiatus in the party but you need to be aware that excitement is high. Have something that the guests can go to and become involved in. Outer games is great.
Once all your guests have arrived, start playing some party games. Make the initial ones loud and raucous as a way of expending some of the pent up energy and excitement. There are all kinds of games that can be played that take very little in terms of props and so on.
TOP TIP – have at least one ‘quiet’ game before you start the birthday tea. This way you will have calmer children eating.
After food and the customary birthday song, why not have an activity that everyone can get involved in? This is a great way of guests leaving the party with something other than a party bag stuffed with sweets.
Crafts are a great way of getting everyone involved and creating a great party.
TOP TIP – just because the party is at home, does not mean that you cannot buy in entertainment. There are some great local entertainers out there!
- Home time
Again, being prepared as guests leave is just as important as keeping everyone busy and the party flowing. Party bags are a great way of saying goodbye and thank you to guests. They can all kinds of things in them – there are no hard and fast rules – but the norm has become a small gift, some sweet treats and a slice of delicious birthday cake.
TOP TIP – be prepared with plenty of bin bags and recycle containers – and get plenty of hands-on adult help too. Assign your party team tasks, such as constantly sweeping around the rooms and outdoor play area for the party for rubbish and so on. This way, you won’t feel like you are left with a mountain to climb when it comes to tidying up.
Having a party at home is not the nightmare that you think it is. With clear arrival and pick up times, the right number of guests (in other words, not too many that everywhere appears cramped) and with a clear plan for the party, it really can go with a swing