You can hardly believe that your kiddo is turning a year older – and now, you have a party to plan! No matter the age, there are basic essentials to hosting a successful party. This 3-part series will not only guide you through each step as you plan your kiddie’s birthday bash, but also offer fun ways to make it eco-friendly!
Remember to include your little one as you make these special efforts – not only is it great fun for them, but it’s a great opportunity for you to teach them how to become Earth’s little champions!
Theme – Come up with your own original theme!
When it comes time to choose a theme, your child will no doubt be jumping up and down shouting words at you. Barbie Princess! Bob the Builder! If you don’t want your party to be a Disney endorsement, take the time to sit with them and inspire ideas. Castle Party. Construction Party.
What I love about choosing an original theme, is that you won’t be needing those pre-packaged party goods – you know the Barney plates, cups and and plastic trinkets, that kids use and play with for two minutes – then live on in a dump site for an eternity! Those are not the kind of memories we want to make!
Have fun coming up with ideas – your theme will be the structure of your party!
Here are some themes to get you started:
- Art Party
- Camping Party – outdoors or indoors
- Circus Party
- Cooking Party
- Construction Party
- Dinosaur Party – and make these!
- Fairy Party
- Indian Elephant Party
- Super Hero Party
- Tea Party
- Woodland Theme
As soon as you have your theme, you’re ready to start planning!
Food – When it comes to selecting a menu, keep it light and simple.
More is not better! The key here is to avoid food wastage. Decomposing food in landfills is a terrible burden on our environment. It releases significant quantities of methane, a greenhouse gas.
Here are some tips for keeping your food in check:
- Rather than an open buffet, serve a sit down meal for the kids
It’s fun for them to eat together and this way you can control the portions. By serving individual meals, you plan for exaclty what’s needed. Plus, when it’s home made, you can choose healthy ingredients and do good by buying local produce or organic goods! This needn’t be expensive or difficult – remember kids like simple foods!
- Fish fingers
- Savory pies
- Chicken noodles
- Cookie cutter lunch, Brown bag lunch
- Veggie Fried rice
- Package-free drinks
Skip on all the bottles of water and cans of soda! Serve up a couple pitchers of fruit-infused water! Just fresh fruit slices and water, that’s it. Simple and yummy! I’m starting to think these eco-friendly tips are money-saving tips too!
*Here’s a cute free printable label for your fruit water*
- Small bites for the adults
It’s not necessary to feed the adults a full meal. It’s a kids party, we’re there for only two hours – serving a few appetizers and small bites is more than enough. Look for no-cook options or recipes that you can make early and simply warm up on the day.
- Make it a cooking theme party
A home-made pizza party is a sure win! Each kid makes their own mini pizza, cooks it and eats it. No left-overs guaranteed! Offer toppings like organic or local mushrooms and colorful bell peppers and watch in amazement as they happily sprinkle veggies all over their pizza!
- Pick one or two snacks that are fun and creative!
You don’t need 10 bowls of chips to make them happy! Kids are most amused by eating weird foods! Anything that looks gross, anything on a stick or fun and colorful!
Here are some some fun ideas, depending on your theme, that you can try:
1. Dirt cups – dragon party, dinosaur party, construction party…
2. Fairy bread – princess party, tea party, rainbow party, fairy party…
3. Fruit skewers – rainbow party, princess or fairy party…
4. Aquarium cups – beach party, nautical party
5. Fishing snack game – beach party, nautical party
- Use organic ingredients and tell people!
Spread the word that you care! Have little labels on your food: organic pasta, organic chocolate strawberries. Even if it’s only that one dish, say it! You will implant the idea and let people know that it’s entirely possible to use organic ingredients!
- Serve it up with bio-degradable plate wear
Sure, they’re not colorful or printed with amusing characters, but their soft natural color are the perfect canvas to all your fun treats and colorful snacks!
You can find them in almost any grocery store. I’m telling you about this kitchen specialty shop (TTOT), because you can buy them there, along with any and everything kitchen related. It’s the Ikea for people who like to cook. You have to check it out!
I can’t blame you, it’s hard to manage a party from the kitchen. Try to find one that doesn’t have high minimums and makes you order a ton of food. Also, have you heard of P.U.R.E.? They’re an organic caterer and might offer some solutions. There’s Petit Bowls which does delivered home-made meals for kiddies aged 4 month-6 years, free of chemicals and with lots of organic ingredients! check them out – could be an option for individual, sit-down meals.
Great! By consciously choosing your theme and food options, you’ve helped by:
1. reducing the amount of plastic and waste
2. reduced the amount of packaging
3. reducing food wastage
4. sourcing local produce
5. including organic ingredients
6. supporting some great business that offer healthy options for people and planet!
- Now you’re ready to work in some fun games and activities! Make sure to check out Part 2!