Birthday parties always seem a bit stressful at first, especially if it’s for your own kid. However, it’s worth the effort – if only for the smile on your child’s face (and let’s be honest, for that piece of cake, too). Spring and summer, in particular, call for a garden party as the exterior offers not only a beautiful view but also more space for games and fun.
Now I thought of a couple of ideas that would make the upcoming birthday party an unforgettable event. From creative ways to invite my child’s friends and their parents to decorations and delicious treats to – perhaps the most important point on the agenda – games and activities. Here come a few of my ideas.
Invitations: E-Mails are Outdated
The first step in planning a birthday party is sending out the invitations. Of course, an e-mail or a WhatsApp group chat might seem like the easiest and fastest way to reach everyone. At least since the Covid-pandemic, however, people tend to long for a more personal approach. Not only does it seem much nicer to invite someone individually, an actual invitation can be pinned on the fridge door where they serve as a friendly reminder of the upcoming event. Moreover, invitation cards can be used in different ways. If I go through the idea of a mystery motto party where the children are supposed to solve a riddle, the cards can be used to assign everyone a particular role. Needless to say, this would be a lot easier with older kids but I might try anyway.
Another alternative would be a video invitation. That, however, will require more takes (hence time) and will certainly test my editing skills. I could add fun animations, pictures, and even a special message from my son though.
Decorations: Bringing the Garden to Life
When it comes to decorations, I plan the beauty of our garden to be my main inspiration but I would like to enhance the backdrop with colourful balloons, streamers, and bunting also. Some paper lanterns hanging from the tree branches could create a magical atmosphere, too. I’m a bit hesitant to use actual candles since there has once already been an incident. Well, you know kids.
I should probably also set up a dedicated area for gifts and create a festive centrepiece for the birthday cake.
I might also include:
- Wall decorations
- A yard sign
- Chains of Lights
- A marquee
Food: Delicious Treats for Little Guests
No birthday party is complete without delicious treats to satisfy hungry tummies. All parents know, however, that kids can be very picky.
I will probably opt for a garden-friendly menu that includes both savoury and sweet options. Finger foods like sandwiches, mini pizzas, and fruit skewers are always a hit with kids and adults likewise. I also think of setting up a refreshing lemonade stand or create a colourful fruit punch for everyone to enjoy. For the main course, I’m considering a barbecue station with grilled burgers, hot dogs, and veggie skewers. And of course, the birthday cake itself is an undertaking. I’m still not quite sure which one it will be this time as there are so many yummy cake flavours for kids. Perhaps I will order the cake from a bakery this time to make sure it matches the party’s theme and captures the joy of the day.
Games and Activities: Fun for Everyone
One of the highlights of any birthday party is the games and activities. In a garden setting, the possibilities are endless. So I think of setting up classic outdoor games like sack races, bean bag toss, and a piñata. I will definitely organise a treasure hunt and hide small treats and toys around the garden for the children to find. Renting a bouncy castle or setting up a small inflatable pool for water games has been on my bucket list for a while already, I will wait though until both my boys are old enough to enjoy that. In the meantime, I plan on providing art and craft stations where the little ones can create their own masterpieces to take home as party favours. I still have to make a playlist to have some music playing in the background to keep the energy high and the atmosphere lively.
Other fun games are:
- Musical Chairs
- Pin the Tail on the Donkey
- Pass the Parcel
- Egg Toss
- Egg and Spoon Race
- Duck, Duck, Goose
- Balloon Relay Race
Safety First: Considerations for an Outdoor Party
While organising a garden birthday party can be exciting, safety should always be a top priority. That is why I always make sure to create a designated play area away from any potential hazards like ponds, sharp objects, or thorny plants. Providing plenty of shade to protect the children from the sun, and keep a first aid kit handy in case of any minor injuries, is also essential in planning the birthday party. I will also inform the other parents in advance about the outdoor setting so they can dress their kids appropriately and bring sunscreen if needed. Another thing I always like to clear upfront is whether some of my son’s friends have any allergies. I also enjoy involving my big guy in the planning process. After all, the most important thing is to create a fun and memorable experience that celebrates my child’s special day in the beauty and safety of our garden.
Let me know if any of you guys have any additional guidelines when organising your children’s birthday parties.