In my family of 5, all of our birthdays fall in the first four months of the year. One in January, two in February, one in March, and one in April. As soon as the New Year passes, I go into Birthday Mode. Are we having a party? Where will it be? Who are the guests? And, most importantly, what are we serving? As a parent invested in Real Food, I want to serve my children, and their guests the most nutritious and tasty food I can make.
But, where do I start? I went searching around for fun birthday party fare that is both tasty AND Real. Are you in Birthday Party Menu planning panic mode? Relax. I have several options that are sure to please any hungry crowd!
Soda, by far, is the most popular birthday beverage found at parties. Next year I am going to try making this Old Fashioned Root Beer! It is lacto-fermented AND tasty! This Flavored Water Recipe would be a great replacement for juice boxes or Capri Suns! Heck, I might make it tomorrow just to have in my fridge! Yum!
Besides the typical chips, cheetos, pretzels, and goldfish, I love this bloggers idea of freezing watermelon and making watermelon popsicles! Dilly Carrots are very popular in our house, as they taste just like pickles and would be great to have out for snacking! I was at a party recently where little hot dogs were served. Check out these party franks! What a fun twist!
Ahhhhh, cake. The one menu item that I have to get right. Kids don't come to birthday parties for dilly carrots! They come for fun and CAKE!!! This website has a great collection of the best grain-free birthday cakes, if that is what you are looking for. This Butter Cake looks amazing, and I might not wait for a birthday to make it! I also like cupcakes at birthday parties because they are easy to serve and everyone loves cupcakes! These Dark Chocolate Cupcakes look delightful! And if you are looking for a different kind of frosting, this Peanut Buttercream Frosting sounds perfect for those cupcakes! Of course, if cake isn't your thing, this Chocolate Mousse sounds heavenly!
Now, planning the food is only part of it. When my kids were smaller, my head would start to spin with all of the details – guest list, party favors, decoration, theme, invitations (do I mail them or just send an evite? I admit that I have always done the evite.) and location! I never really involved my kiddos in the actual planning of the party. I just did it all myself. Since then, I have come to find out that by doing so, my child is missing out on some great life lessons!
Check out this book, “Planning Children's Birthday Parties – Libby and Penny's Survival Guide.”
This book breaks the party planning down into 5 sections:
- An overview including first, toddler, and preschool parties
- Descriptive plans from weeks before the party to days after, a specific schedule for party day, and a template for creating a party plan
- Budget, guest list, invitations, manners, gift giving, safety, behaviors, traditions, and a party timeline
- Planning template and detailed theme parties
- arts and craft activities, game ideas, and a supplies and shopping list.
After reading this book, I realized that first, I was robbing my son of the gift giving experience. I thought that opening presents would be too overwhelming for everyone so I always waited until all of the guests left before he dove in. His friends never got to experience the joy of watching my son open the gift he brought and my son never got the chance to verbally thank them. Another thing that I would like to start doing is having my kids hand write their birthday invitations. There is nothing like getting a letter in the mail, and by having my kids do this they are actively involved in the planning process.
Both of the authors are parents and each have 30+ years of teaching experience. This book is a great resource that offers planning advice, great life lessons for kids (e.g. being a courteous host or hostess), and techniques that can help avoid chaos when parents and children are not prepared.
Throwing a party together for our children may be easy when we do it all ourselves. But involving our children in the process not only gets them more excited about their special day, but they become invested in all the little details they may have missed if we didn't include them.
So, now that you have an idea about what you are going to serve at your child's birthday party, grab your kiddo and get to planning! Libby and Penny are so kindly offering a discount to Oh Lardy Fans! Simply enter the code 2ZY2FYLE at check out and receive $5 off of your purchase! Hot Dog!
Do you have an birthday traditions you would like to share with us? We would love to hear them!