Saturday, December 26, 2015

Let's Celebrate She's Turning 8!!!

My oldest kid just celebrated another birthday on Christmas Eve. I really have no idea how 8 years went by so fast.  Somewhere along the way I lost 3 years. I keep trying to tell her about life as if she is still 5 years old until she reminds me, "Dad I already know that." It's at that point I  come face to face with the fact that my 8 year does know that the Aborigines live in Australia. I'm certain that I didn't learn this fact until I was in college. I think part of me just secretly wants her to stay 5 years old because I'm not ready for her to launch head first into the "real world." No matter what, with each passing birthday, I realize that the inevitable is little girl is finding her place in the world. We recently threw her a fashion show theme party. I was impressed that she actually designed and baked her own cake. My wife went all out like normal and gave our kid the party of the decade. 
I say this every year but she's outdone herself with the parties that she's thrown this year. This is one of the things I love the most about her and her family. They celebrate EVERYTHING! I can't remember having parties to celebrate birthdays as a kid, but  my girls will be the exact opposites. I think it is absolutely essential to celebrate with your kids especially on the day that they were born. I am convinced that spending your time and your money (it doesn't have to be a lot) to show your kids just how happy you are that they were born means the world to them. The images of my daughters' smiling faces during their birthday celebrations are burned into my brains forever. The cool part is that after the party they mainly talk about the games or something a friend said and not how many gifts they received. So, if you're like I used to be-kind of nonchalant about birthday parties...get over it! As matter of fact, leave this page right now and go order your kid a cake for their next birthday. Go buy them like 20 balloons, a big tiara, or a baseball cap.  Just let them know that they are a big deal to you! When they're young all they care about is their superhero mom or dad. Slow down so that you can relish in that. Don't miss these moments because you can never get back those Dad Days back that have passed, but you can get the party started today!  So, do you think planning a kid party is hard? Me too!!! Don't worry, I've asked my wife and resident party planner to give you her top 5 party tips to get you started.

Birthday Party Starters
by: Danah Artis

1. Pick a theme- This can be as easy as checking out their toy box or remembering their favorite video game or activity. Once you figure this out the rest is a piece of cake.

2. Choose your location-You can always start with your house, but keep your options and your eyes open for venues that won't break the bank. We once threw our youngest a Tinkerbell themed party at our neighborhood park. The only cost for the venue was decorations and clean up. Thankfully, it had the feel of a picnic and guest felt more inclined to help clean up. Afterwards, we went home to a clean house!

3. Don't forget the cake-There's nothing worst than a great party with terrible cake! If you're like most hubbies, you're just not into baking. If you decide to get a cake from Walmart or a local bakery, most of them will allow you to sample the product before you order. So, take your kid with you on cake tasting around town. Make sure you find out how early you have to place the order.

4. Invitations- Once you get your kiddo's party all mapped's time to put it on paper. If you want people to show up, a party invitation is a MUST! Mailed invites just give your party that official feel. People are more likely to make the event a priority if you take the time to mail them an invite. Not to mention, if you include the theme on it, they can begin to feel the fun factor. You can even hire someone to quickly design an invitation, so that all you have to do is print it.

5. Have fun-Remember the whole point of a good party is fun. Fortunately it doesn't take much to think up or simply Google some fun party games. Because children are hardwired for fun you only need to have about 3 party activities in order to have party success.

Photobooth fun with the family