One: The birthday party is for the benefit of the birthday child and his or her circle of friends. Your primary goal is to make the birthday child feel special. A secondary goal is to ensure that everyone has a good time. Involve your child in the planning process. After that, everything else is unimportant.
Two: Don’t go it alone; get some help. You can’t do everything alone. Enlist the help of an older sibling, cousin, relative or friend. It is well worth the investment in terms of stress reduction.
Three: Be sure that there’s plenty to do. There is no destructive force greater than a crowd of children with nothing to do. You need to keep them occupied from the moment the first guest arrives until the last guest leaves.
Four: Safety first. You don’t usually think of birthday parties as especially dangerous, but keep safety in mind as you plan you event; make the day trouble free.
Five: Be Flexible. And be Realistic. Plan and prepare, but don’t get too frustrated when things don’t go as planned. Be ready to shift gears if a game or activity isn’t a big hit. Be ready to go to Plan B. Do crafts in the garage when it starts to rain or plug in a video when the entertainer is late or doesn’t show. (There is very little excuse for this but it can and does happen.)
Six: Talk to your entertainer. If you’re going to hire an entertainer for your party, e.g., a clown, magician, face painter, musician, etc., then be sure to ask him/her what they need from you, For example, space, furniture arrangement, if windows and doors are an issue, electrical or other requirements.
Seven: Be a good host/hostess and arrange for a parking spot for your entertainer, as close to your door as possible, as they may have some heavy equipment to bring in.
Eight: Your entertainer is not a baby sitter. It is to the benefit of both the party and your entertainer to have adequate adult supervision in the room. This allows the entertainer to focus on the entertainment.
Nine: Make sure that your camera is fully charged and/or you have spare batteries ready, and that you have plenty of film (digital or otherwise) because you only get one shot at those once-in-a-lifetime pictures.
Ten: Don’t forget to breathe and stay relaxed. Your frame of mind will have a direct effect on the temper of the party. Help you child have the best day ever!