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Encouraging Heroes. You can be one too.

Kid’s parties are notoriously daunting. Entertaining a rowdy group of children for a long period of time is no easy project. From planning activities that all the children will enjoy, to clean up duty, there is much work to be done. When preparing a party, there are things you can plan for that will make your child’s party a little less stressful.

Keep Organized
This may sound like a challenge, but there are some simple tips for keeping a party organized. To start, write all of your ideas down in one easily-accessible spot. After that, try to narrow down which activities to keep. Then create a rough outline of when you will prepare each thing on the list. Having a timeline is a great tool to prevent over planning and keep you from stressing.

Include Your Child
No one has unique ideas like your child does. Using a child’s imagination is great for brainstorming some activities, decorations, and themes that are bound to be one-of-a-kind. Plus, now you have a new and fun way to bond with your child. Offering input will guarantee a party your child will love while giving your think tank a rest.

Cupcakes Instead of Cake
When the party is over and everyone has had their fill, kids often leave their messy plates, forks, and napkins wherever they please. Instead of hassling with a traditional cake, order some cute cupcakes. There are great bakeries that specialize in cupcakes like The Little Cupcake Company that make cupcakes in any color or flavor to suit your child’s birthday theme. Don’t worry you can still bring the cupcakes out on a platter and stick candles into them so your child can still enjoy the tradition of making a wish and blowing out the candles.

Recycle Household Items
Don’t spend a fortune on the next big party. Use what you already have around the house or in the garage to fashion homemade decorations and activities. For example, a simple storage container mounted on a dolly functions as a great mini go-kart for a car themed party.

Control the Mess
Kids can be messy, which can pose a problem when it comes time to clean up. To save time and effort, cover all tables with disposable table cloths. Instead of clearing and washing the table after dessert, simply gather the tablecloth by the corners and tie it like a garbage bag. Avoid any messy activities like painting or tie dye. Choose fun activities like bean bag toss or craft projects with less mess like decorating a t-shirt.

Become the Child
Parties are supposed to be fun! Remember to enjoy the planning process. Even though the party is for your child doesn’t mean you can’t have fun there, too. When things get too difficult, take a step back and work on something fun. Make sure that you have another parent or better yet, parents to help you wrangle the kids and stick to your planned schedule.

Don’t let your kid’s party get the best of you. Take the time to plan it out and find simpler ways to accomplish your party goals. You don’t have to forgo the party all together, just plan ahead and take steps to keep things clean and organized.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents who want to maintain their sanity, even during parties.