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5 Reasons To Keep The Guest Count Small

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I’ve seen it over and over and over, parents go all out for their child’s birthday parties and invite as many guests as possible. I understand it’s a numbers thing and you never know if anyone will actually respond to that RSVP request you added to each invite, but seriously, please stop inviting the entire neighborhood to your child’s party.

Here’s why:

  • Some birthday children are easily overwhelmed with the noise, the busyness, and all of the extra attention.
  • Inviting everyone so that no one gets left out will not prevent a children from feeling or getting left out at the actual party.
  • Kid’s don’t learn realistic social graces and may expect to go against what they really feel in fear of not hurting a friend’s feelings.

You may be thinking, the point of a large crowd is to ignore some people! Yes, yes, I know the quote by F. Scott Fitzgerald in The Great Gatsby, “And I like large parties. They’re so intimate. At small parties there isn’t any privacy.”

However, I can guarantee you that he was referencing an adult party and not a child’s party. The parties he wrote of could be equivalent to a ball or to the club and there should be no clubbing for kids! Besides, the Etiquette Coach in me cringes to even consider such a notion. There is an art to hosting and it includes the rule that not one guest feel uncomfortable or left out.

Here are five reasons children’s parties with small guest counts are better:

  1. Smaller numbers equal intimate moments for children. There is often more time to do activities, play, dance, interact, and no one has to feel rushed to do anything. Everyone (adults and children) can truly enjoy socializing the way it should be – slow and relaxed.
  2. Less anxiety and stress. Good God, yes, to this one! The birthday child with a small number of friends is often joyful, involved, and the parents seem equally so. On the other hand, I’ve witnessed the opposite where kids at larger parties are utterly reserved and even intimidated by everyone around them and all that is going on. Less is more.
  3. Children develop good social skills. What better way to practice good manners than in an appropriate setting. It’s much easier for children to play and enjoy their time with a small number of friends in a short amount of time.
  4. Easier on your budget. Spend your money on better things. You shouldn’t have to spend a month’s worth of your food budget to feed every guest. Give yourself the opportunity to afford quality over quantity.
  5. Space. It’s always nice to have walking room or sitting room. The less guests you invite, the more room and comfort you will have per guest.

A good rule to go by is inviting as many guests that your child can appropriately host or one friend per each year of age.

-Tai Kimes
Author, Etiquette Coach, & CEO of Girl Adored

Top 7 Places To Host Your Next Party

bellaSo, it’s birthday time and you’re wanting to do it big this year. Okay, maybe not big, but at least better than last year. The problem is deciding where to host the party.

I’ve planned birthday parties and events for years in many different cities and I do see some repeats. Lucky for you, I like sharing and I like helping, so I’ve listed the top 7 places to host your next party no matter where you live.

  1. Your Home. I know, I know. This is a no brainer, but seriously, don’t rule it out as an option. I’ve attended parties held in the backyard on nice days, downstairs in the second entertainment space, and right in the living room. Some of the best parties I’ve attended have been hosted in the home.
  2. Community Centers. Many community centers offer rooms for rent that may accommodate a guest count of 25 or a guest count of 250. The decorations may be limited as many centers don’t allow things on the wall, but you can get creative and still end up making the room look fantastic. Most often the fees for the smaller rooms are affordable and worth it. Be wary, too large of a space can get expensive to decorate if you are trying to stay within a small budget.
  3. Recreational Places. These include pools and parks. Parks are great for outdoor bar-b-ques with little clean up. Some pool places have a small party room attached that they rent out for parties. If you are lucky, they may also have an indoor pool so you can rent the room and have a pool party in the cold winter months. Who needs summer?
  4. Movie Theaters. I admit, I’ve never held a party at a movie theater, but I’ve seen other moms do it and their kids couldn’t be happier.
  5. Restaurants. Maybe this one won’t rank too high on your list if you live in an area that doesn’t have a Chuck-E-Cheese or other spectacular kid restaurant, but it’s definitely still an option. One year my daughter wanted to have her birthday at Pizza Hut so she could eat pizza and have waiters sing to her. She loved it and so did all of her friends.
  6. Industry Specific Locations. Does your child participate in gymnastics or dance? Many industries that provide lessons host birthday parties at their location, too. Check them out.
  7. Bowling Alleys, Skating Rinks, and other Specialty Places. These locations really make it easy for you to do a party, but at a cost.

The great thing is that no matter where you have your party, there are several professionals who are available and willing to help you with party planning, food prep, photography, cake designs, and characters to perform at your event. (Ahem! We’d love to help!)

 

1 Easy Craft For 4th Of July Your Kids Will Love

0debb988bede89150ba783fbe058f837Happy 4th of July! It’s a day for outdoor cookouts, family gatherings, and fireworks. We found these homemade confetti launchers and thought it was perfect for the kids to make and play with while the sun is still up and before the real fireworks begin.

So, without further writing, here’s the how-to link from Pi’ikea Street. Enjoy!

http://www.piikeastreet.com/2012/07/confetti-launchers/

*photo from piikestreet.com

Oh, What It Is To Focus!

teaching collageCan I start off by saying just how good it feels to focus? I mean, to really focus! Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a dreamer and a visionary. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with either unless you are both without focus. And admittedly, I really had to focus on my focus.

I was trying to do everything – host kid events, do party planning, train and hire performers, build the business, keep a full time job, volunteer, do photography, help friends, be a mom, be a wife, be a caregiver, serve God… I was trying to accomplish way too much (and with little support)! Again, my focus needed more focus.

Soon, my health began to fail. I had a heart attack and ended up spending six days in the hospital! I’m still recovering, but one thing I am happy about is having the shifting of my focus as an outcome.

I’ve learned to say “NO” and not feel guilty about it. By saying no to certain things, I can now say “YES” to things that I really enjoy doing. When I focus on what brings me joy, I find it also keeps me healthy. My focus motivates me to KISS myself over and over and I love it! And by KISS I mean Keep It Simple Sweetheart.

Sometimes, all it takes is a paradigm shift, a different perspective, or a heart attack! LOL

I hope you enjoy the newly focused Girl Adored Parties & More, I know I sure do!

You Are Prettier Than A Disney Princess

Tonight, my daughter and I watched Frozen for the second time in a row. As she cuddled up next to me on the couch, she glared wide eyed at the singing Disney Queen on the screen. I smiled to see her delighted and fascinated.

“Mom,” she says, “I wish I were as beautiful as the queen.”

I quickly reached for the remote and paused the movie.

I told her, “You are so much more beautiful than she is. You are real and she is not real. She is a cartoon. You have beautiful skin and I love your curly hair. You should absolutely love how beautiful you are.”beauty quote

My daughter seemed uncomfortable at my words, but smiled anyway.

Soon after, I fought hard to resist my now sudden urge to throw out every Disney and Barbie movie we own. I hadn’t quite realized the impact that was being made on my young bi-racial daughter. She felt that her complexion wasn’t pretty because it didn’t match the pale skin she admired on the television screen. She begs for her curly hair to be straightened, because she doesn’t find it as pretty as the other girls or princesses with long flowing straight hair.

I pray that she learns to love and even admire her diverse genetic makeup. It would be nice if Disney or Pixar would catch up with our multi-cultured society and create a new set of diverse princesses that are just as beautiful as my daughter with her light skin and long curly hair or create a princess with thick soft curls all combed out in a fro and skin as smooth as dark chocolate like my beautiful niece.

Until then, I will continue to remind and tell my daughter that she is in fact, prettier than any Disney Princess could ever dream to be. It’s the only way to keep it real.

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