Sunday, 26 January 2014

Harry's 5th Birthday Party

Yesterday we held Harry's 5th Birthday party. It was quite an occasion for us, as it was the first time that we have organised a Birthday party for more than just family. I spent ages agonising over who to invite, not quite feeling able to trust Harry to remember all the people that he wanted to come. In the end we had about twenty children, a mixture of friends from school and friends that he has made outside school.

We went for a very popular option around here at the moment - the party took place at the local leisure centre, where you can hire the soft play area for an hour and then have a function room afterwards for the party tea. I don't know why I was so worried about it all, everyone turned up and as far as I could tell everyone had a great time. It was a really easy way to do the party, all the entertainment was taken care of and all we had to think about was putting some food together for the tea and making up the party bags.

Child's 5th Birthday party

Harry was a bit overwhelmed by it all. He was very excited to see all his friends arriving and having them all in one place, but once they were all there I think he was happy to just have them around him, rather than trying to play with everyone. He's a lot like me and finds large gatherings a bit too much after a while. I think that he liked being the centre of attention for a bit though, and I'm very glad that we made the effort for him this year.

I'm not sure what we'll do next year. I don't know that I can handle this kind of thing every year, especially once Mia cottons on and starts expecting the same! I know that there wasn't this level of expectation for a big party every year when I was growing up. I do quite fancy having a go at a more creative themed party at some point though, so we'll see!

Child's 5th Birthday party

33 comments:

  1. I have to be honest and admit that I am dreading reaching this stage with the kids. I am not really one for large gatherings either. Hiring somewhere sounds like a good option though and all kids love soft play. I am glad he enjoyed it. Happy birthday Harry.

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    1. I did kind of feel pressured into it I must admit, although I'm glad that we did it for him because he did appreciate it. Soft play makes for a very easy party, especially if you can hire it exclusively!

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  2. Glad he had fun! My daughter always insisted on big parties, whereas as oldest son doesn't like them- preferring to do something smaller with one or two friends! My eldest turns 18 this year, am guessing that will require something elaborate!

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    1. I don't think that I did anything for my 18th apart from go out to the pub with some friends, I do remember some friends that had enormous parties though!

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  3. TO be honest I am very lazy when it comes to parties. Or maybe I am a genius. We didnt really do them when the kids were little and as they got older I bemoaned teh cost and made a throwaway line of "I would rather give you the £100". And lo... that is now what happens. There is the occasional, take five of your mates to teh cinema and I will pay etc but generally I give them the cash they would have spent on the party instead.

    None of them really wanted a 16th, two have missed 18th parties as they had a car instead. No doubt the 15 year old will make up for it. I blame MTV's My Super Sweet Sixteen or whatever that hideous programme is called.

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    1. I think I'd rather give them the money, much easier all round!

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  4. We LOVE birthday parties! Last year, Sasuage had hers at a soft play centre which also has a skating rink and rock climbing wall and this year we're probably going to hire a hall and a DJ so she can just invite the whole class - that way no-one gets left out. I'm glad Harry had a fab day and hopefully the fact that it all ran so smoothly means you won't be so worried next year!

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    1. Wow, sounds great! I did think about inviting the whole class but I'm glad we didn't, fortunately it doesn't seem to be the convention at his school. It will be easier next year, and hopefully he'll have a more settled group of friends by then too.

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  5. Have always done a party for daughter son was a little different but have taken him to things like Top Gear Live and he has had one proper party which was a failure so this year we invited his friends to watch a football match at Goodison which he preferred x

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    1. I think that my son would probably prefer an experience than a party, although he enjoyed it he hadn't actually asked for it (unless he just assumed that he'd be having one!)

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  6. Ahh Happy Birthday Harry! E is 4 in July and I'm already starting to think about planning her birthday party, it's the first year she has friends from pre-school to invite so I'm excited!

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    1. Have fun planning! It's nice when they can choose their own friends to invite, rather than the ones that you've chosen for them!

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  7. Happy birthday Harry! Looks like it was lots of fun. I am dreading Kara's 5th birthday too

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  8. We've done a leisure centre birthday - with great success (although the control freak in me found it very stressful) but as they've got older (we're planning for the 9th and 7th birthdays now) the parties have got smaller. Last year I did a cupcake party for the Sealion Keeper and an Owl party for the Cheetah Keeper with lots of craft and cake and just being about. This year the Sealion Keeper has asked to go out for tea and have 2 friends sleep over (sorted!) and the Cheetah Keeper wants to take a friend to the zoo and have lunch there. We'll get a little something in the shop instead of a party bag and go from there. I think it's all about finding the party that suits the child, not what everyone else thinks you should do

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    1. Love the sound of the themed parties! I'd like to do that one time, but with a smaller group. I did kind of feel that we had to do a big party because everyone else was.

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  9. Awwww sounds like a lovely Birthday party!

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  10. I love a party, so we always have big parties for our girls. Looks like you had great fun and that is all the children care about!

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  11. Happy Birthday Harry!

    Glad he enjoyed his party. We've got DD's 6th coming up in a month or so and no idea what to do this year! I'd prefer a smaller gathering where they go and do something I think. Just got to persuade her!

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    1. I think Harry would probably prefer a smaller gathering in the future, perhaps next year he'll have more of an idea what he'd like to do!

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  12. I like to keep Roo's parties quite traditional. Up til now she's been very content with games and a party tea either in our house or at a local popular venue that is cheap to hire and has great facilities. Last year we mixed it up with a Gangnam Style dance off, and the year before, our friend rocked up with his guitar and did the music for us as our speakers couldn't be heard in the garden. I fear that ship may well have sailed though, and she'll be wanting more girly themed soirees.

    Elliot, being 3 this year, and having fewer friends, is going to be taken to the cinema to watch the Lego movie, and then have some cake back at our house.

    Harry's party looks like it was lovely xxx

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    1. That sounds fantastic! My daughter is three this year too, although I'm not sure she's patient enough to sit still in the cinema. We will probably just do a family party this year for now until she has some more friends!

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  13. We did a birthday party - either at home or a soft play - for eldest until he was 6. When he turned 7 last year we just took him and a friend to the zoo for the whole day and spent lots of money on the two of them. I was getting a little sick of having to invite his whole class, only for some not to bother coming, or even worse turning up with siblings so I didn't have enough party bags.
    My youngest will be 6 this year, and in the spirit of him getting the same as his brother, he'll have a party. But I'm hoping I can persuade him to just choose one special friend in future to include in birthday days out as treats.

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    1. It's nicer to be able to spend the money on a few special friends rather than having to invite everyone, fortunately we didn't feel the pressure to invite the whole class, that would have been too overwhelming for him and me!

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  14. what a lovely party!! Ours are getting smaller as my boys are getting bigger, thankfully :)

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    1. Thank you, and I'm hoping that will be the case here too!

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  15. I did a big party last year but am planning small ones this year as Kitty especially gets overwhelmed. Happy birthday to Harry!

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    1. It's so easy for little ones to get overwhelmed, I don't think Harry knew who to play with when his friends from all different places were all together in one place!

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  16. Roo has always had a birthday party but as Tigger has just started pre-school I think that I will need to throw him a big party this year. Although with Roo and Tigger's birthdays just three days apart I best start saving now!

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  17. This year I just did a small party at our house with a disney cars theme with the friends we made from our NCT classes that we see most weeks. I felt a bit guilty we didn't do anything more like they all did and like many of his preschool friends I know he wanted to have too. But just couldn't afford especially just before Christmas too! I do feel there is a lot pressure though and dreading when we actually get to school age when the even bigger parties start! x

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  18. Happy Birthday Harry.

    My now 11y/o has always had parties but my 8 y/o is not too bothered about them tbh. i always get stressed and I hate how a lot of parents don't bother to let you know if their children will be coming!

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