Guide to Your Child’s First Birthday

  • Age 1 (First Birthday Party)

Three key things to remember to create a great party

1. Plan ahead. Get your invitations out early so you won’t be disappointed by no-shows and last-minute planning will be easier.

2. Expect surprises. By now you know that your baby is full of surprises. Unpredictable events are part of you and the baby’s life. As long as you keep this in mind the party will be easier to handle.

3. Relax and enjoy yourself and your baby. Any party is a success if it lets you enjoy the events and people around you, so go with the flow and have fun!

Party-planning tips

Often parties for 1-year-olds are given mostly for adults. If you plan to have a party with other children around besides the adults keep these tips in mind:

Set a time limit. This is the most important rule of thumb for planning a party for infants. If you invite children who will also be around your one year old, keep the party to 1 to 1-1/2 hours. Children at this age get tired easily and may be overwhelmed with a lot of strange people around them so it’s better to keep the party short.

Plan a theme. Let your imagination loose when thinking about a theme for the party. Consider clowns, cowboys, teddy bears, princesses, cartoon characters, or animals. Maybe the theme is a color, or the party is centered around a specific song, movie, or nursery rhyme. To carry out the theme, have a few adults or older kids dress in costumes and entertain the younger guests. Your place settings, decorations, invitations, and even the cake can carry out the theme.

Include a variety of activities. One-year-olds are a little young for structured activities, but if you also have older kids coming, one or two games or activities for them will help keep the party going smoothly. You could consider for example hiring a magician or clown or play games such as musical chairs, The Itsy Bitsy Spider and even try singing and dancing.