1st birthday party ideas are all about the baby. The first thing to consider is what kind of birthday party you want to have... a nice little celebration at home or something more elaborate.
The most unique 1st birthday party I've attended had a night time fireworks show on a private boat rental at Disney World. Talk about going all out!
Let's face it, your baby's first birthday party only comes along once. And while they won't remember it (they may even take a nap in the middle of it), it's a very important day for mom and dad.
So how do you get started with planning a 1st birthday for your baby?
The best thing to do is get ideas from others who have already done it. Read all of the ideas that readers have shared for throwing a memorable first birthday party.
Add your birthday party ideas and get entered into our monthly birthday ideas contest.
Cute Little Monster Birthday Party * Age : Babies and Toddlers, 1
Monsters for a first birthday? Yep! This little boy with the nickname of "Monster" got an adorable monster theme party for his first celebration.
1st Birthday Ideas * Age, Babies and Toddlers, 1
It's a time capsule activity called "Letters to Baby". It will give special meaning to your celebration and provide memories when your child gets older.
Ideas for Babies First Birthday Party * Age : 1st Birthday
A birthday tradition that is perfect to start with the first birthday! Uses photos and creates a "This is Your Life" theme and a special ceremony that you can continue year after year.
In many way, your child's first party is the most important, especially for you! It's a time to celebrate parenthood and having that new addition to your family. For your child, they are less likely to understand the hoopla of this special day. For them, it will be yet another wonderful day when they explore the mysteries of the world around them.
Keeping that in mind, it's important to plan this day for yourselves (the parents), your family, your friends, and your loved ones. Too many games and activities will tire your little one out, and they won't understand the "specialness" of a first birthday at this age.
So free yourself from trying to come up with lots of games and activities for your baby's big day! Instead focus your attention on planning activities that your guests and your family will enjoy.
This doesn't mean your child shouldn't be the center of attention on their first birthday, of course they should! And when they look back at photos and scrapbook albums years later, they'll appreciate the thought and care you put into planning their very fist celebration. It just means you have a little more flexibility in planning the theme and activities for the day.
Consider this novel approach. You could plan a birthday memories day, where all of the activities are centered around creating special memories and keepsakes. Have guests make first birthday scrapbook pages at the party, and then follow up with a personalized letters to baby activity.
Or start a new birthday tradition that you continue starting with year one and going all the way to 18!
1) Keep the guest list and time line simple. This is a day to celebrate. Make sure you do it with your closest friends and family members. There's no need to invite all of the neighborhood kids though! Having mostly adults and just a few other babies and toddlers will keep the focus on your birthday child.
2) Choose a theme. Everyone loves a theme! Check out the Giant List of Birthday Party Ideas for hundreds of theme ideas and concepts. Center your cake and decorations around the theme and it will make it very festive for your guests. Two of the most popular themes for babies right now are ladybug and teddy bear.
3) Plan activites. Choose a handful of activities geared towards your guests enjoyment. An activity that is a lot of fun is Guess Who. It's designed for an adults birthday party, but is perfect adapted for a 1st! Guests all bring a baby photo of themselves and everyone guesses who is who! It makes for a lot of fun as everyone compares photos (and family will spend lots of time seeing who has babies chin, eyes, ears etc.)
Another activity is to have every family member bring a special family heirloom from their childhood and present it to your child. You can have a special memories box set aside to store these in for when your child is older. Have a "Presentation Ceremony" where everyone gathers round and each person goes one at a time offering their special heirloom and making a quick toast of their "Wishes" for your child's future. Ideas for heirlooms are a special toy, baby spoon, handmade baby blanket, even a tooth-fairy box.
Another thought is "Video Memories". Have a video camera on hand and shoot footage of each guest reciting a poem, children's story, or best wish for the future to your baby. (This is a nice idea because you can share copies of the dvd's with your guests after the party is over.)
4) Keep your timeline short. A 1st birthday party is best if it runs 1 to 2 hours, 3 hours at the most. Otherwise your child may start to feel tired and ready for a nap. Allow for enough quiet time on their birthday that immediate family gets to spend with them.
1) Guests arrive and settle in. Allow 15-20 minutes for general socializing and to give everyone time to arrive.
2) Plan 1 to 4 first birthday party games or activities. Depending on the time frame of your party, these activities should take up one hour maximum combined. So if you plan a longer activity, have less than 4 planned. If they are short activities, opt for 4 different ones.
3) It's about an hour and 20 minutes into the party now, and your baby may be getting tired. Have some quiet time after the activities (which may have been boisterous). This is the perfect time for having cake, finger foods, or a full meal if you have decided to serve one.
4) Open baby's presents. Your child most likely will not open their own gifts at this age. You can put on a presentation of them opening one gift (with mommy or daddy's help). After the first one, have you and your spouse open them, thank the giver, show it briefly to your baby, and add it to the pile. If you will have many guests, consider having the gift opening of your gifts to baby before or after the party. That will keep the present opening time minimal. Remember, you and your guests will be much more excited about the presents than your baby!
5) End of Party. At this point, the party has run for around 2 hours. It is time to wrap things up, connect with any guests you haven't had a chance to speak with. Depending on how many people you have invited, some guests (close family and friends) will likely want to stay longer, spend some quality time with the birthday girl or boy, and help with clean up. Arrange for this ahead of time. That way when the party is finished, you can thank everyone for coming, explain that a few people are helping with clean up and graciously let them know the party has ended without confusion that some guests are staying on.
Add your 1st birthday party ideas and get entered into our monthly birthday ideas contest.