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Gone are the days of just Ice cream and cake, today’s birthday parties are all about themes. For my daughters first birthday I knew I wanted it to be all about Minnie Mouse.  Mouse ears and pink and white polka dots? How could I resist such cuteness!

But seeing as this was my first time ever planning a child’s birthday party, let alone a themed one, I was a bit overwhelmed. Decisions like cake or cupcakes? Piñatas or party bags? Indoors or outside? It was enough to give me an Ice cream headache! But the party was a success with these simple tips I’m sharing with you. No matter how old your children are here’s five tips to on how to plan the perfect themed birthday party:

1. Choose your theme

It sounds simple enough but with so many options this may be your toughest decision. If your child is older enlist their help with choosing something that like. For babies or toddlers is a little more difficult as the theme decision is left to the parents.  My advice is to go simple, cupcakes, rainbows, and sports are great for those first few birthdays.

2. Make a list, check it twice

Once you decide on your theme make a list of what you’ll need for your party. It will keep you organized and stop you from overspending when you start shopping for those adorably cute supplies.

3. Shop early, save later.

Online retailers that sell everything you need in one bundle make it easier to shop for your party.  Sites like Oriental Trading Company and Party Express are your one-stop shops for all of your birthday needs. No more running from store to store trying to find plates or banners.  Just make sure to order in enough time so you don’t have to spend a fortune on shipping.

4.  Make it Personal

Though you are working with a theme feel free to add your own personal touches.  Maybe try using a combination of two themes in one. Rockstar princess party anyone?

5. Ask for help.

Finally, in the words of the legendary Michael Jackson “You are not alone…” Spouses, grandparents, and godparents: it’s all hands on deck when it comes to party planning so ask for help. While you’re picking up the cake let someone else be in charge of balloons or food.  It will ease some of your load and give you more time to dedicate to organizing your child’s celebration.  Just relax and enjoy the cake!

Did you use a theme for your child’s last birthday party? Did it help with planning your fete? Share your comments below:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Caprece Cotton-Sturdivant is a writer and new mommie who loves to share comedic tales of what she’s learned so far about being a mom. She resides in New York City with her husband and daughter who are her inspirations. Follow her blog here.

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