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Having birthday party at home. Hold me.

After much debate in the Musings household, we have decided to have my daughter’s 6th birthday party at home after all.  We go through this EVERY year.  I swear I’m going to ante up and have one of those swanky birthday parties at Bounce U or Libby Lou or ANYWHERE but my house.  But we always end up balking at the high price tag and regrouping for an at-home party.  It’s really what my daughter wants anyway.

But.  Omigosh!  I hate, HATE having birthday parties in my house.  My OCD gets all discombobulated.  But it’s what we’re going to do, and I’m resigned to it.  Of course all 3 of my children have fall and winter birthdays so it’s really too cold to play outdoors. So my husband came up with the brilliant idea of having the kids decorate Christmas cookies.  Because that’s not messy or anything.  Ahem.

So besides that, what should I do to occupy ten 6-year-old girls for two hours?

Please throw out your best ideas.  I need HALP!

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29 thoughts on “Having birthday party at home. Hold me.

  1. We’ve had my daughter’s parties at home for the past 3 years. Every time I think I have enough crafts, the girls just blow through them and then they look bored so they end up just playing and running around the house (which is what I think they want to do).

    How about beading, making jewelry? Can easily be done with plastic beads and pipe cleaners. Another idea – making a fairy wand – my daughter did this at a party last week and loved it. The mom hid ribbons throughout the house and the girls had to find 6-7 of each ribbon then the mom secured it to a dowel rod. Very cute. You can also do games – have them sing along to HSM or Hannah Montana.

    Good luck!

  2. You could maybe do a slumber party theme (even though they’re not spending the night) and have them wear their cutest pj’s and do things around that theme. They could paint their nails, play board games, stuff you’d do at a real slumber party. Good luck!

  3. How about Christmas caroling to a few neighbors? Sometimes its nice to get bundled up, head out in the cold and come back for cake and hot cocoa! Christmas cookies, although messy, are quite a fun idea and I’m sure will be a big hit! There’s always Christmas movies…..

  4. I did a spa party for my 9yo daughter and her friends. My 6yo participated and loved it too. So it might work for that age group. I bought $1 nail polish in tons of colors and a peel-off facial mask (which the girls found fascinating and hilarious). They ate finger foods while my friend and I painted nails, etc. While things dried, we all danced to HSM music.

    Totally filled 3 hours. In the goodie bags I just put cheap nail polish, “makeup” and bath salts.

    They felt totally grown up. And overall it was cheap and easy for me. (And since grownups were doing the messy stuff, the house didn’t end up too messy.)

    You’ll make it thru. 🙂 They mostly just like to play and be together anyway.

  5. Go to Michaels/Hobby Lobby. Buy their cheap foam crowns, have the girls decorate them. Or, since it is near Christmas they have cute crafts.

  6. Sorry that I can’t offer any ideas from experience since my daughter is only going to be 2 in January. But a small craft project might be fun or if your daughter has a bunch of dress up stuff, have them each dress up and do a fashion show! Those are all I have in my bag of tricks! Good Luck!

  7. 2 hours is 30 minutes too long! Both my kids have February bdays and I have hosted home bday parties and barely survived to tell the story. The foam crowns are a great idea and not nearly as messy as decorating cookies. I’ll be praying for you 😉

  8. If you had a few teenagers to help you out, the spa thing would be a great idea. One could do hair and one could do nails. Let them wear their p.j’s and eat popcorn and cupcakes instead of cake. Have several games lined up for the ones who are not getting their hair and nails done to keep them occupied. You know that is the key – never give them a spare second:)

  9. I think it helps to have a theme for the party. That way, the activities can center around it. I remember playing standard party games like musical chairs and pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey at my birthday parties when I was that age. We also used to have a contest where we’d throw small, soft animals into a large basket. Whoever got the most animals into the basket won! Good luck!

  10. I think the spa/slumber party type of activities would go over well, but make sure there aren’t any parents who would be upset over putting nail polish, make-up, etc on 6 year old girls. Many are trying to downplay the importance of these things even though it can be a fun, every-now-and-then thing to do.

    How about a Disney Scene-it game?

    Oh! The last at-home party Princess was at they made some crafts (buy a bead kit and let them each make a bracelet), decorated paper bags with stickers and markers and essentially made their own goodie bags. Not only does it save you from putting them together ahead of time in turns into its own activity.

    Or, if you’re sticking to the Christmas thing you could have them make ornaments. I’m having Princess glue popsicle sticks into sleds this year. Another ornament I considered was buying clear glass ball ornaments and letting her paint them. There’s plenty of ideas and tutorials online.

  11. Along the line of the spa party suggestions, you could get one of those bubbling foot bath things ($30 or so) and let the girls put their feet in that before painting their nails. My oldest daughter just loves it and feels so grown up! Plus, then you’d get the have the foot thing to keep for yourself. I love mine on a hot summer day filled with bubbles and yummy salts…. Have fun!

  12. What if they get dressed up (fancy, princess-type clothes, of course) and serve their decorated cookies at their own little tea party? You can get each of them a pretty teacup very inexpensively from thrift stores – then they can keep it as part of their “goodies”. You can serve other easy finger foods and juice instead of tea. You can teach a little etiquette lesson maybe and the girls can try lifting their pinkies up to look all fancy while they drink their tea – LOL! And there are lots of little girl tea party ideas on the internet.

    Whatever you do – keep it simple and have fun!

  13. Pick and theme and center it all around that! If you go the princess route have them dress up and take polarids of them. Then decorate frames to put the pics in. There are super simple ones at Michaels. Kids love scavenger hunts…. hide small things around and have them find them. Maybe a hunt for little cut outs of crowns or of fairy wings… Or fill a large container with all kinds of things for them to find and corn so it is hard to find the items. Give them a list and have them check it off when they find it.

  14. Ok…So we have all our parties at home and I have a love hate relationship with them too! I didn’t have time to read all the comments today so if repeat something I AM SORRY! First, if you do the cookies…buy CHEAP target shower liners and place them on the floor for quick easy mess free clean up. Also when we decortate in groups I buy those tiny cups at Costco that places like quiznos uses for pickles and I give each child their own frostings in cups(less germies)

    We did a fake sleepover for my daughters 6th bday – all came in pj’s, with pillow and blankie…bought movie posters, set up popcorn machine and makeshift candy counter…handed out play money for purchasing played movie trivia, watched movie, ate cake and sent them home IN PJ”S ready for BED at 8:30! Goody bags were a Blockbuster card goof for 1 free rental and a movie type candy and a bag of microwave popcorn.

    GOOD LUCK MOM!

  15. I adore at home parties! I agree w/everyone else—themes! Then I’d do stations…have a station where they dress up, make a craft, make a food/snack/craft/thingie, a photo op, etc. FamilyFun.com has the best theme ideas. Even if they aren’t exactly age appropriate, you can make them fit a 6 year old. Can’t wait to see what you do!

    Oh, and keep it short!

  16. Oh, I meant to say, just lead them around from station to station. Keep them there for 10-15 minutes at a time. You do 4 stations and that’s an hour, add some cake and presents and it’s time to go home!!

  17. Hula Hoops. If all else fails you can toss them on the ground and make them hop through, but some of them can actually get them going.

  18. Sister, I SO feel you here. I, too, have three children with birthdays in Nov, Dec and Jan. My Henry’s birthday is 12/19. One year, we did do a cookie party…we had about 7 or 8 kids here, between the ages of 3 and 6, and we decorated gingerbread men, drank cocoa and I made one of those fancy schmancy train cakes decorated with candy. Oh, I had fun with the decorating for this! But anyway, the kids LOVED it, it wasn’t a huge amount of work, it took the entire party time, basically, and they were gone from my house!

    But seriously, this year my kids all wanted a party at pump it up (a moon bounce place) and I told them I would do ONE party for All three of them combined and they are SUPER excited and I don’t have to do ANYthing for it! Woohoo! I actually feel a little sad about it, but not that much. Hey man, that’s what they wanted…

  19. if you’re going with the spa idea (CUTE!) i have a bubbling foot bath thingy, if you want to borrow it!

    at sweet and sassy, they put hair glitter on the girls (like hair spray) and glitter on their cheeks. you could probably buy your supplies there. and target in the x-mas section has tons of little lip gloss/nail polish sets for el cheapo.

  20. Responding again 🙂 If you really don’t want a mess don’t do the cookies. I did them every year w/ my daycare kids and it was a huge mess! I ended up doing most the work and I was paranoid about the frosting on the hands/licking off and then double dipping….gross!

  21. My daughter had a Webkinz party when she turned 7. We had a carnival theme for her 6th birthday. I have some ideas from both that I could send your way if you are interested. What I’ve learned from parties is not to overdo anything. What the kids are most interested in is just playing together. I usually plan all sorts of games and end up not even doing them!

  22. OK. I grew up with three older brothers. I now have one son. When I had an at home BD party, we invited 3 boys. 3. Total of 4 boys.

    So. What do I know?

    But do all the options for girls have to be about, like, cosmetics? How about a scavenger hunt – part one inside, part two outside. Bring them in for cocoa and cake. Open presents. Hour and a half.

    Thanks, bye!

  23. Do you have dress up clothes? Have a fashion show. Get some of the bead crafts and they can make jewelery. There are so many things you can do, just walk through the craft store.

    Good luck!!!

  24. Have you had the party yet? Did I miss it? I am itching to know what you did and how much fun your little princess had!!!!

  25. That was a good idea, for me birthday parties are very important especially for the kids. Yeah, right swimming is one of the kid’s most wanted game or leisure. You can go to the nearest beach or resort if you hate messing up your house, I understand, kids would really roam around your house and of course do messy things. But, most importantly, you can celebrate your kid’s birthday anywhere as long as the kids love it.

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