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Tips For Effortless, Fun, Frill Free Kids Parties

We hosted Ava’s 7th birthday party on Saturday. It’s the 10th kids party I’ve thrown. 7 for Ava and 3 for Hannah. And each year, our parties get simpler and more fun than the year before.

Mostly because I started to stop trying to hard!

I’m not a Pinterest mom. I never will be one, nor do I want to be one. I’ve spent too much time, effort and money over the last few years, trying to create the perfect party for my kids, when in reality, no one actually cares about! Especially not the kids. And let’s be honest, the party should be ALL about the kids.

All the kids care about is the foam slide, cheese curls and sweets.

This year was probably the least organized I’ve ever been for one of my kids party’s. By Friday, less than 24 hours till the party, all I’d done was book a venue and order a cake. But we still managed to pull off a fun party that went on for far longer than we’d planned  (from 11am to 4pm) and I think everyone, kids and adults alike, had a super time.

Forget the OTT themes!

I promise you, your child doesn’t really care, so long as their friends are there, they get presents and get to have a ton of fun! Ava initially wanted a “glow in the dark puppy party” which I shot down as ridiculous. Then she said she wanted a pink and black zebra party, so I designed the invitations, cupcake toppers and cake image on Canva. It was effortless and cost me nothing!

Forget the decor, no one actually cares!

And all you’ll have to show for it are a few Instagram memories, a leached bank account and an ulcer. I didn’t even buy balloons this year, they usually fly away or the kids land up fighting over them!

The Food?

Keep it simple. I’ve spent a fortune over the years on fancy platters and kids platters. The kids platters usually go to waste, because if it’s a good kids party, no one is actually eating. We had a couple of bags of cheese curls ad a couple of bowls of mixed sweets. 

Because Ava’s party was over lunch time, we braaid boerrie rolls and served that everyone, adults and kids alike.

Forget politics!

Invite who you want to invite and forget the rest. 

Ava’s party was a mix of school friends and our personal friends and it was fantastic! I have little to no time to sweat over offense and sensibilities. 

Also, this is easier to do, given that her birthday is in the school holidays and at the end of the school year. So I don’t send invites to school and she picks and chooses who she wants there. 

Kids Entertainment?

Really doesn’t need to be lavish or over the top.I’m lucky both my girls are summer babies, so a foam slide, lots of bubbles and sunblock and we’re good to go. They played themselves broken on that slide yesterday! By 7pm everyone was lights out. But not before Ava had thanked me a hundred times for her super fun day.

No party packs!

We get a Piñata, which provides a lot of laughs and fun for the kids and once it’s broken, what ever you can snatch off the floor, you get to take home with you. I give each of the kids one of those cheap party buckets and they go to town trading sweets and catching the fallen.

We had a SpongeBob Piñata this year and the kids went crazy for it!

Forget a pretty cake, just get something everyone likes!

For Ava’s 1st birthday, I spent R1000 on a cake. Which was beautiful, but over cooked and no one ate it! Ava’s ice cream cake was a hit on Saturday, it was very hot and after each kid had been served a cone, the adults tucked in too, who doesn’t like a scoop of creamy ice cream on a boiling hot day?

Oh & lastly, & potentially most importantly, don’t forget the wine!

Here’s the thing guys, I just feel like there is so much pressure on us already, with out the added pressure of creating the perfect party when nobody but you actually cares.

We had a super fun time, Ava-Grace was THRILLED with her party and that’s all that matters. 

So are you more of a Pinterest mom when it comes to parties, or are you like me, a no frills, effortless good time for all? I’ve just started to feel that we’ve become so OTT in our parenting that at times, we forget what’s important, throwing the perfect Pintrest party is fantastic, but honestly, it just isn’t for everyone and it’s no reflection on your love and appreciation for your child. 


  • Pandora

    December 12, 2016 at 8:31 am

    I’m with you there. I usually book a venue and some kind of entertainment, then just sweets and chips. Kids want to play and scream and have fun. They don’t care about place settings and decor. The parents usually don’t eat much either. Also the kids would rather have a pile of icing instead of a cake. Every year my daughter has a blast without all the frills and fuss. So although she enjoys the OTT parties she does get to go to, I won’t be throwing one.

  • Cassey Toi

    December 12, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    I have, for all 2 of the birthday parties I’ve thrown for K so far, always gone with simple. I make his cake, get fruit and snack platters, and have the party where all the little people can run and explore. I’d not survive the big theme stuff, it’s not something I can pull off.

    • Sharon

      December 12, 2016 at 8:50 pm

      I don’t even make the cakes. I found an amazing cake lady, who bakes beautiful and delicious cakes for less than I could probably do it and it’s far less stress and pressure on me.

  • Lauren

    December 12, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    My boys r both very little. So I think I’m too enthusiastic and try to be the Pinterest mom! But each year I end up not even having a chance to enjoy the parties with my Little Ones. Going to try relax this year and not be OTT! Thanks for the inspiration.

    • Sharon

      December 12, 2016 at 8:49 pm

      I started out like that! Ava’s 1st birthday was the most ridiculous affair. But you quickly learn it’s not appreciated and completely unnecessary.


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