How To Personalize a Party For Your Child

communion, dress, girlI am planning my third Communion for this May. My daughter wants it to be very different than her sisters’, and yet, when I tried to convince her to have it out of the house, she said, “No, I want it to be where Maddy’s and Serena’s were.” When I tried to convince her to do something more intimate, she said, “No, I want it to be as big as Maddy’s and Serena’s, with the DJ and the tent and everything.”

So, I am left trying to make a party very different and exactly the same. No one said it would be easy.

Personalize the Day
Favorite Colors: Each of my girls has a lifelong favorite color. Madelyn loves orange. Serena loves yellow. Lorelei loves blue … the last frame yet to be decided but blue leis are on their way as I write.

See the bottom of this post for photos of the communion.

Personalized items: Kids love seeing their name and picture. Check out these sites for personalized napkins, banners, hats, etc.
Shindigz    Paperhouse   PlumParty

DIY: You don’t have to spend a fortune. Print clear stickers for your vases or votives with his or her name. Let them make a sign to hang — the less professional the better. Display pictures of them at different ages and stages.

Involve them in the planning: It is all in the spin — make your child feel like the decisions are his or hers. Maybe you can add something special like a magician, a dj, a cartoonist or a photo booth. Let them help you pick the extra touches. What’s their favorite dessert? Opt for that instead of cake. Make a candy table with all their favorite treats.

Music: Make the playlist together. In the weeks leading up to the party, play your selections in the house and add music as you hear it on the radio. It will add to his or her excitement.

Let them invite friends: Nothing can ruin a party like having no one to talk to. Your list may be a mile long but make room for the people the guest of honor really wants to hang out with.

Let them wear what they want: Lorelei picked out her dress a couple of weeks ago. It is not at all what I imagined, but the smile on her face made me hand over the plastic immediately. O.K. fine. I tried to steer her in a different direction, but the disappointment was so evident the owner of the store told me to shut up and let her decide. The truth is, if she is comfortable in what she chooses, she will be happier and look more beautiful than in something I choose.

Don’t show the stress: Planning a party can cause a lot of anxiety. Try to only let it show after your children are in bed. Half the fun is the anticipation. If they think it is work and is a drag for you, you’ll spoil the good time before it even starts. Remember who’s day it is. I can clearly remember my Communion. I was in awe of all the people celebrating just for me. And, my mom let me wear my new cowboy boots and cowboy hat with my dress all day. The most elegant affair will be quickly forgotten by a child. A personal party will create memories that will last a lifetime.


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Author: Karen Latimer

Karen is a Family Doctor, mom of five and founder of Tips From Town.


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