Today’s blog post was inspired by the topic that has been going around in our friend circle. Many of us wonder, should we throw our kids a birthday party and if so, should we do it at home or at a place? We decided to write a blog showcasing the pros and cons of hosting a party at home and hosting a party at a venue.
I want to premise this blog with a conversation my husband and I have every time we talk about kid parties. The conversation looks like this:
Me, “What should we do for ____ (insert kid’s name) birthday? Should we have a birthday party with friends and family or just a family one?”
Dave, “I don’t understand why birthday parties have to be so outlandish. Growing up we always had great birthday parties and they were inexpensive. All we needed was hamburgers and hotdogs and a cake.”
Me, “I agree, but you aren’t answering the question. What should we do for ____ birthday?”
Christa and I have thrown lots of kids parties over the years. Some have been extravagant and some have been simple. No matter what type of party, most people nowadays (thank you Pinterest) come up with some type of “theme” to plan the party around.
Pictured Below: Sophia’s 3rd Candyland inspired party. Her birthday is in December so the kids decorated cones into Christmas trees. They made candy necklaces and did a few other crafts. The huge cupcake piñata was a hit!
At Home Parties
These are parties that are thrown in the comforts of your own home and backyard. Many of us remember having most of our birthday parties at home while we were growing up. We were fortunate in the Skelly family to have a very creative mom who loved planning parties!
Pictured Below: Jack’s 5th Mindcraft inspired party. This was a birthday party Sophia and I attended a few weeks ago down the street. I will have to say it was one of the most clever birthday parties I have seen. My friend Karen went above and beyond with the small touches! The numerous Mindcraft boxes she painstakingly painted were a hit! They served as both a cute decoration and as a fun activity for the kids to stack and then knock down. Karen’s husband even performed an experiment with diet coke and something that caused it to explode.
Pros of Throwing an At Home Party
- You can invite more guests.
- Party times are more flexible.
- Pinterest ideas Galore!!!
- You can make your own cake/food/decorations.
- You can do it on the cheap if you really want to!
- Families can bring siblings, and it is not a big deal.
- You have to spend hours cleaning your home, getting it “presentable” for guests.
- Often you end up spending just as much (did I really need to go to Kroger 10 times in preparation for the party) or more compared to an party thrown at a venue.
- People might stay longer.
- The weather might not cooperative.
- You have to clean up your house after the party.
Pictured Below: Sawyer’s 4th Sting Ray inspired party. This was another super fun party. My friend Melissa went all out with the cute cookies and party favors. This party was located at the Houston Downtown Aquarium. The party started with a tour of the aquarium. Next, kids were ushered upstairs for a nice lunch. All the kids were given their own cute stuffed animal. After lunch the kids fed the sting rays, rode a train, and rode a couple of carnival rides. It was a 3 hour party that was packed with fun activities!
- You don’t have to spend hours cleaning your own house!
- You typically just show up and most of the work it done for you.
- Birthday party venues tend to be well oiled machines, they know how to do it in an organized way!
- There are lots of options!
- The venue cleans up after the party!
- You can still do a few small “Pinterest” projects.
- You are often limited by the number of guests you can invite.
- If kids don’t show up, you still may have to pay for their spots.
- The cost can get expensive.
- Some people feel they have to one up the last birthday party and do something more spectacular (i.e. limos for 5 year olds).
- Some venues are more rigid than others.