1st thing was deciding if we was going to have a small party at home for a few close friends or if we was going to hire a hall space and invite everyone. In the end we went with the hall for 2 reasons, reason number 1, It meant i didn't have to host in my house and worry about mess and clearing up after ward then the 2nd reason was i didn't want to make Bodhi chose a few friend his class has x30 children in it and trying to get a 5 year old to pick just 5 close friends is hard work! so the hall was booked for the bargain cost of just £10 an hour.
But then we had to pick if we wanted to shell out £100+ for bouncy castle ( in the 2 weekends leading up to his party Bodhi went to x2 parties of class mates and they both had bouncy castles ) or if we was going to go old school and play games and let the kids run around for 2 hours. We went with party games and running around!
The only game i spent out on was for pass the parcel for the prize and a few other small prizes for game, looking back on it now the children would have been more then happy to have just run around the hall with sone pop music on in the background of the whole time! I think the key is to not stress out , if no one wants to play a game so what ?! the main thing is they are having fun and the parents are okay with it.
I did buy a photo booth and props from amazon and this went down well with some children others ( Like Bodhi ) didn't even go over to it, so i have loads of photos of the same children but none of others, But for a few pounds it was a bit of fun and something I've put in the loft for us to use again at other parties / events.
When it comes to party food i do think its key to think about what time you are holding your party Bodhi's was 2 - 4:30 so my thinking was that guests would have had lunch before coming to the party but come 4pm would be pretty hungry from all of the running around. We had use of the kitchen in the hall we hired so went with hotdogs & chips i also chopped up pepper sticks, carrot sticks and cucumber sticks for them to munch on while they waited for hotdogs, This seemed to go down really well and all the parents said what a good idea it was. The food only cost around £15 pounds and the parents helped out with the left over hotdogs.
I brought a tray bake cake from sainsburys 1.6kg cake for only £10 !! hardly worth the stress of making your own is it ! this was cut up and put into party bags for the children to take home. talking of party bags i feel this are a waste of time and money but something you have to do at a party! I went very minimal with Bodhi's
pack of stickers
small chocolate bar
small toy spilt from large pack from amazon
all the children went home happy and once we had cleared up and packed up we left the hall and headed home to open the boot full of birthday gifts Bodhi was very kindly gifted.
my top tips if you are planing a party for your child.
Ask for helpers !
Make sure the helpers know what needs doing and set them jobs, My mum was on food duty with me and my sister and my dad was taking photos and my sister in law offered to do face painting.
Photos !!! you will be too busy to take any so ask guests if they have any they can share with you
Don't get stressed - Your child will be happy as long as they have cake & music