It is a special day – a year since the special little person arrived in your life and changed your world forever! You want to have the best first birthday party ideas for your kid. And it is but natural that you want to celebrate it in the best way possible.
But at the age of one, a child will not know what a party is. She / he won't have friends yet. She / he might not even be very mobile, and won't even remember the party. So the first year's party is mainly for the parents! But of course, photographs will ensure that when the child grows up and sees the pictures, will at least know what it was like.
When you are planning a party for a one-year-old, you will have to factor in the unpredictable moods and schedule of a toddler. Ideally, a small party with just family is the best. But if you want to go all out and have a large party, by all means do it. But whether you have a small party or a big one (or none at all) here are some things that will make it smoother for you!
A child may still not be too comfortable with people, and might not appreciate strangers too much. So, very often, the birthday child ends up becoming overwhelmed by all the noise and light and people, and acts up, in turn making everybody highly stressed. So, unless you have a good support system, stick to small parties at this age, with close friends and family.
Time the party when the baby is usually fresh and active. Early evening, just after the baby has had a nap, and has been fed, is a good time. Guests will want to see and talk to the child, and a tired child will not take kindly to so much attention! Also, don't stretch the party for more than an hour and a half. If you are planning on having a Pooja or other ceremonies related to the child turning one, consider having the party on a different day.
Take the help of the child's grandparents, or aunts and uncles, or a nanny to keep the child engaged when you have to interact with guests. It is not easy looking after a baby and hosting a party at the same time!
If you are having a small party, consider having the party at home, where the child is more comfortable. However, having a party elsewhere will free you of cleaning responsibilities!
If you are keen, anything to do with animals or teddy bears is a good option. You could go for colour coordination, but that is more for the benefit of photographs than for baby!
If there are going to be other small babies, consider having some bouncy balls around, or a basket of toys that children can play with. Avoid balloons, and any decoration that a child can hurt herself / himself with. Entertainers aren't required at this age. Some fun music is enough to get the little babies bouncing.
If you are having a large party, get it catered. If you are going to do the cooking yourself, make sure that you make something for the adults too, since they are the ones who will be bringing the kids. If you plan finger foods for the children, ensure that they aren't messy. Simple cookies, cheese crackers, boiled and spiced beans, or boiled carrot sticks make good finger foods for little ones.
If someone from the family or friends' circle takes on the role of photographer, there's nothing like it. If you have to get a professional photographer, ensure that she / he is good at engaging a child, and getting the best out of snaps.
The first birthday is a good time to start a birthday tradition – a family photograph, for instance, or getting all guests to sign a book with messages for the child. Or you might want to visit an orphanage and sponsor a meal or give underprivileged children gifts to mark this day. Something that is special and unique, and which you can continue to do for the years to come.
Plan well, and minimize last-minute panic, and you'll have a first-year party that you'll remember for a long time. But most importantly, remember to lavish attention on your little one, and at the end of the day, have some special time with just the family, and let your baby revel in the love and security of being with loved ones!
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