When planning a birthday party for a toddler, many things need to be considered to ensure that everyone has fun -- mommies included! My little one is super active, so we decided on celebrating her 2nd birthday at a playground to give her and her buddies plenty of space and activities to occupy them. Here are a few things my husband and I considered before throwing her birthday bash.
It’s all about the location.
For our summer baby, we chose a playground with sprinklers for lots of cooling off. We also selected one with plenty of shade during the afternoon period, and that had age-appropriate equipment. Lastly, we chose the playground based on its size. We wanted our kiddos to be able to roam around freely. For endless entertainment purposes, we also made sure to bring activities with us like bubbles, balls to kick around, and a big bucket of chalk to draw with. The kids found plenty to play with -- and even shared!
Keep it simple.
Food-wise, we kept it simple and healthy. Toddlers en masse are crazy enough without being hyped up on sugar! We found that easy-to-serve food such as cut-up fruit, plain animal crackers, and pretzels worked perfectly. Unless you're having the party over lunch, this is more than enough food. And be sure to keep lots of napkins or wipes at hand for cleaning up.
It doesn’t have to be an all-day affair.
We kept the party short and sweet. Two hours is the perfect length to allow for people to arrive late and leave early if they need to. We planned the singing and candle-blowing around 45 minutes into the party, when most of the guests had arrived, and before our birthday toddler became overwhelmed by all the attention, guests, and activity around her.
Take home treats for everyone.
Great take home treats include balloons and goodie bags with stickers, crayons, and coloring books. Another great goodie bag idea a friend of mine had was to use a reusable water bottle. Kids can fill it with water at the party – and is a useful and fun object for a toddler to play with.
Christine Knight is an Australian expat and mother of one enthusiastic toddler. Now living in Brooklyn, NY, she is co-founder of brunchwithmybaby.com, a site dedicated to helping parents navigate the NYC and Sydney food scenes with their offspring.