Planning a first birthday is an exciting time and a huge milestone. Baby turns 1, a time for family and friends to gather round to celebrate baby’s first year. Although, your little one isn’t going to remember that special day, throwing a first birthday party is a must. I do not recommend spending hundreds of dollars for the special day but there are some things you can do to prepare for the party without breaking the bank.
- Invitations. Sure you could call everyone you want to attend to save money, however places such as Tiny Prints and Shutterfly have affordable invitations starting as low as 40 cents each. With both companies you are able to personalized the invitation with a photo of the birthday child, can choose colors to match your theme and much more.
- Choose a theme. Themes aren’t necessary but much easier when decorating for the party. There are hundreds of 1st birthday themes to choose from including favorite TV characters such as Mickey & Minnie, animals, bugs, trucks and more. I highly recommend checking out Birthday in a Box as they have many themes to choose from.
- Get a cake. Many places offer a free 1st birthday cake when you buy a cake so baby can dig in on their own cake. Check your local bakeries and grocery stores to see if they offer free 1st birthday cakes. You may want to check into photo cakes as well, they are adorable. To keep this even more affordable, consider making homemade cupcakes for the guests and just buy the small 1st birthday cake.
- Decorate. There is no need to go overboard on decorating. Get a Happy 1st Birthday banner, some balloons, streamers and create a board with photo memories of their first year. You can also get some letter blocks if you have them to display baby’s name. We also love this first birthday guestbook.
- Baby attire. A baby’s first birthday shirt or onesie are adorable and affordable. Zazzle has some cute baby’s first birthday shirts that can be personalized with their name.
- Goodie bags. I’m not a fan of junkie goodie bags. For baby’s first birthday why not make some homemade cookies wrapped in cellophane to give to all to take home.
- Photos, photos, photos. This says it all. Take photos of everything to look at when baby has reached new milestones. I absolutely adored looking at old photos of me. Once you get those photos, take them in to print or make a photo book of the memorable day.
- Games. Think of fun games where the birthday child can get in on the action. Make hand prints on paper with non-toxic paint, let guests guess baby’s weight, sing songs such as ABCs and Ring Around the Rosy, color (get big chunky crayons for birthday child) and play with play dough. You can easily make your own. Check out this easy homemade play dough recipe.
- Food. Finger foods, pizza, pigs in a blanket and healthy snacks such as grapes, apples, carrots, graham crackers and pretzels are all good ideas. No need to go extravagant here. Make a pink sherbet party punch or blue party punch for the beverage.
- Timing. Planning the party would be best right after the child naps, so if their usual naptime is 11am, consider having the party at 1PM.
These small tips from buying the invitations, decorating and foods will give you an affordable baby’s first birthday that is sure to be a memorable day for all who attend!