Kid’s birthday parties are often fun filled, sugar-fueled, wild and crazy events. For the parents of spring, summer, and even fall babies, the idea of an outdoor event saves some parental sanity. It’s much easier to imagine 15 three-year-olds swinging wildly at a piñata if you are at a park. Face painting, pony rides, water games, and relay races are all easier to pull off outdoors with plenty of open space as well. So, what is a parent of a winter baby to do when planning a birthday party for their little one? While it may require a little bit of creativity, your winter baby can enjoy a fabulous birthday bash too!
Consider the size of your guest list when choosing where to hold your party. Much of the time, your home is a perfect place. After all, you and your child are comfortable there. If there is a need for a quick change of clothes or a nap, everything you need is there. Problems only arise when your guest list exceeds your available space, which leads to a lot of stress and mess. Choosing a venue outside the home can be (but doesn’t have to be) expensive. Ask around your local area for suggestions and check your connections. You may have more available than you immediately think. Check with your church or a family member’s church. They often have fellowship halls that can be rented for a reasonable fee. Also look into facilities where your children already participate, such as kid gyms and daycares. Finally, look into places such as roller skating rinks, bowling alleys, movie theaters, and indoor playgrounds. Many of these and other places like SwimJim facilities offer surprisingly affordable birthday packages. Having the party somewhere outside your home does add some challenges, but also has some real benefits. Mainly, you will not have the mess to clean up in your house and you can find a facility that fits with the amount you wish to pay, and the amount of help you desire in planning and executing the party.
Since you will be entertaining kids and adults indoors, plan for that. Kids love crafts. In place of running games, set up a craft or science table. Depending on the age of your kids, you can do pre-packaged ideas or more open-ended activities. You can even turn it into a contest, such as making the best mask, building the tallest marshmallow and toothpick tower, decorating the tastiest cupcake, or creating the best clay animal. There is a huge number of sit down activities that will entertain the kids without having them run like crazy. In place of a piñata, consider a fun scavenger hunt so kids can search for candy and prizes without involving a baseball bat indoors.
If you have a little one that loves playing in the snow, bring snow games indoors. Puffy white balls could be used in a snowball toss, create snowmen out of clay, and construct bird feeders with pinecones, nut butter, and birdseed. If you are feeling really adventurous, fill a couple totes with snow, have the kids put on their mittens, and play with snow from the warmth of inside. Kids will think this is super fun but will create a wet mess pretty quickly, so be prepared to move onto the next activity before too long.
While nearly any theme can be tailored to fit with an indoor party, certain ones are easier. A movie themed party with popcorn and other movie theater type snacks would be far easier to pull off indoors than a soccer themed party or Wild West. If your little one has their heart set on a certain theme, being indoors does not have to squelch the creativity, but should just be considered when planning.
In many cases, indoor parties do require more planning. If you are planning a party and running out of ideas, don’t give in and do something you regret. Even though you need to have more planned, it doesn’t have to be elaborate. Something as simple as a bunch of coloring books and crayons, or a playdough table is entertaining to kids. Try to have fun and relax so you are able to thoroughly enjoy the winter baby you are celebrating!