My two sons were invited to a 6 year old birthday party. It was held at a popular fast food venue. There were 27 party guests.
The parents of the birthday person thought it would be easier to have the party there. They were sold on the idea that there’s no mess to clean up at home. But the reality is far removed from that. A paid venue brings up other things that actually make it more stressful for parents.
Here are my 11 valuable reasons why having kids parties at your place is actually easier than you think:
1. The Right Fit For Mixed Ages
Parties at your chosen venue may be good for the age of your birthday person, but not so great when there is a mix of ages. There is a tendency for older kids to lose interest or muck up if there’s nothing fun for them to do. And younger kids may prefer to wander off and explore the rest of the venue.
At your place there is more scope for mixed age play. Kids can be with each other without feeling constrained by equipment or restrictive spaces. Older children can become your natural party helpers – such as helping out with the party games.
2. Younger Siblings can Stick to their Routine
If your birthday person has younger siblings, having the party at your place is a major benefit for the whole family. Everything for the younger ones is there at your fingertips- the right food, their own bed and their own toys. You can pop them down for their all-important-day-sleep-or-I’ll-crack-it sleep so you can spend more time with your birthday person.
3. “Guess Who” Is Not A Party Game
Birthday Dad to Birthday Mum “See that boy hanging at the end of the party room, does he belong to us?” You know that feeling when you’re not quite sure which kids are at your party…
A party at your place is a space where everyone can feel comfortable and included, with no party crashers!
4. You Can Party Anytime
We arrived at the party venue for a 2pm party. It felt like it should have been a lunchtime party, so we rationed our boys’ proper lunch so they could fit in the party lunch without feeling “blaah” after eating too much food.
Choosing what time of day to have your kids party is up there as one of the essential birthday party planning tips. Having the party at your place means that you’re not at the mercy of the venue’s last remaining timeslot. You’re free to choose whatever time suits your family.
5. Kids Party Food is Simple
One of the things that really struck me about this fast food party venue was the “UnHappy Meals” organisation placed on the birthday person’s parents. Gone are the days when everyone was served the same thing. As soon as the party guests arrived, the parent (not the paid party host) asked the children what food and drink choice they would like. There were 6 choices. Multiply that by 27 kids, which makes 162 tick-the-box choices that had to be completed on the spreadsheet. That’s also half your party time taken up with menu ordering.
With a little organisation, party food for kids can be a really simple affair. I’m thinking kid friendly buffet tables of simple-to-prepare and easy-to-eat party food. This gives you the freedom to enjoy the party as kids can help themselves to whatever they feel like eating, whenever they feel like eating.
6. Numbers Are a Lovable Bunch
One of the biggest restrictions about having parties at paid venues is the minimum number of children or minimum spend. This can be a real financial stress point when people don’t RSVP or turn up to the party. The party ends up costing more per child than you planned.
There is absolutely no minimum or maximum spend when you celebrate your kids’ party at your place. Being open-ended with the number of party guests gives your birthday person the opportunity to invite who they really truly want to have at their party. They might only want a couple of friends, or they may want the whole class! Either way, you’re not limited by specific venue numbers.
7. You Know Kids
From my experience, staff who host kids parties at a paid venue are usually teenagers who may lack experience in understanding children. You know your birthday person’s interests better than venue staff. This means you have a greater understanding of how to be with kids and know what kids like to play.
8. Kids Know Play
At a paid party venue, there seems to be an unspoken expectation that the kids will entertain themselves when they’re together as a group. Particularly it seems, around the eating/ holding/ birthday cake time. This is when kids seem to do a little bit of “bouncing off the walls” and it’s put down to the potential sugar hit. But…
Kids love to play. And they love to be silly. Play is their source of fun. Your place has so much more for children to do than you think, including toys and materials for imaginative play. Mixed in with friends and party games, your place becomes the stimulating play area. All of this playing means you get time to enjoy your birthday person’s party.
9. The Power of Responsibility
At the fast food party, things started to get a little hazy when it came to keeping the kids in check. Some of the kids were taking silliness to a new level, especially when the paid party host was out of the room. This is where the confusion for the parent party host started…whose responsibility was it to keep the children in order? At a paid party venue, it’s much harder to enforce acceptable norms when there’s haziness about who has the responsibility.
When the party’s at your place it’s clear to everyone, including the kids who’s responsible. Young children like to know what’s expected of them and who’s taking the lead at the party. Knowing and sharing your boundaries with the kids means you can enjoy being at the party a lot more.
10. Young Kids Love Toilets
At the paid party venue, the birthday parent host spent a lot of her time away from her son’s party because kids needed to be taken to the toilet. She let the boys go into the mens toilet by themselves whilst she took the girls into the female toilets. It seemed to be a rolling trip. Kids never want to go to the toilet in sync!
At your place, your toilet is usually more accessible and child-friendly than the public toilets. Both boys and girls can take themselves to the toilet without needing any help. This means more time for you to enjoy your birthday persons’ party.
11. A Thought On Opening Presents
At the party. the presents were promptly whisked away. Two trips to the car. Never to be seen again by the present givers. There is just no time nor space to unwrap the pressies when you’re at a paid party venue.
At your place, choosing when you would like to open the pressies can be really flexible. You may like to open them on the spot, at the end of the party, or you may like to leave them for after the party. But at least you know they will never be left behind.
Having your kids’ party at home can actually make you feel less stressed and is much easier than you think. There’s no need to rush anywhere. You can stay in the comfort of your own place – one of the best venues for creating a fun, hassle free and enjoyable birthday party.