I love to over-analyze things! I might as well write it down!
Tip 1: Time, Tide, and Birthdays Wait for No One
Plan ahead! I know its cliche but the more time for planning, the better the party. I usually give myself at least a month ahead of the big day. However, it really depends on the party. Don't give up if you are reading this last minute, just don't expect everything to be perfect.
Tip 2: Know Thine Own Friend/Family Member
Everyone is very different! Some people may like big birthday bashes but a lot of other people prefer smaller parties. Some people don't even like the word birthday to be mentioned. Try to make the party suit their wants and not the other way around. Don't do what you would want! It's their day.
Tip 3: Handle Age Appropriately
To some people turning 80 might be the coolest event ever. However, to a lot of other people turning 25 might be a devastating blow. Try to handle the subject of age carefully. The last thing you want is the Birthday boy/girl contemplating the meaning of life at his/her party.
Tip 4: Don't Do Everything
Even though you have been assigned the task of planning the party, you don't have to be the one to do everything. You can split the tasks and costs among friends and family members. I'm not suggesting this for a children's party. But, if you're throwing a party for your friend, ask the other attendees to chip in or blow up the balloons. Planning a party is a huge job. Don't be afraid to ask for help!
Tip 5 Bat Hero Strikes Again
Don't go generic! Try to pick a theme even if its just a color scheme. There are literally hundreds of themes to try! Probably even thousands! Think about the time period, the species, or a trip. Perhaps even all three. If your friend will like Ancient Aliens in Florida who is going to judge. Well, actually with that one you will probably be judged quite a bit.
Tip 6: Don't Forget Activities
Whether it's craft, games, or movies, always try for a fun activity. Talking is fun, but in order to start a conversation, you might need an activity to clear the awkwardness that parties among friends of friends often bring.
Caution: Make sure to make the activity age-appropriate. Kids may be stumped on the 1990s version of trivia pursuit.
Tip 7: Yummy Food!
Food makes nearly everyone happy. Especially comfort foods and desserts. However, many people are often allergic to something or dieting. Make sure you handle this appropriately. I have rules of thumb for each. For allergies, avoid the food entirely if possible. For diets, try simply offering an alternative. However, if the healthy eater is the birthday buddy you may want to use the health foods exclusively.
For birthday parties, I always use the yummiest food that the diet will allow. It is a birthday after all!
Tip 8: You Know Best
This may seem to go against several of the previous tips, however, it is an important advisory. While you want to plan a party that caters towards the birthday boy's/girl's wants, you need to follow what you know is best as well. Don't rely too heavily on suggestions of others. You are the one who needs to decide what will work and what won't. Somethings that might seem fun to others won't be to most. You need to do what's best for your friend/family member
Tip 9: Plan Loosely
Depending on the age and disposition of the partygoers this tip should be followed to varying degrees. Whatever the age though, you need to plan for things to stray. People may take longer or shorter on a certain activity. Children may have a fit over the movie playing. Everyone could be ten minutes. Whatever the case, try to stay flexible so that you can have a good time too!
Tip 10: It doesn't even have to be a party
I have a friend whose only memory of birthday involved her parents forgetting. Because of this, I couldn't throw a traditional party. Instead, I stole her bucket list and rented a boat for the day. She had always wanted to drive a boat! She got to live out her dream with her friends without the word birthday even being mentioned.
Sometimes people need a non-party celebration! Just make sure its something they actually want!
© 2018 Rose Dean