Birthday party tips

1. Remember that the excitement and excessive sugar from the cake and ice cream will produce high-energy children. Prepare your activities around their energy levels.

2. Buy extra party favors. You'll always have an uninvited sibling show up.

3. If you're having a piņata, select one with pull strings rather than one that requires swinging bats. Your nerves will thank you.

4. Save extra candy for those children who don't dive into the piņata pile. You'll avoid unnecessary crying.

5. Scoop out the ice cream the night before into Dixie cups and put in the freezer. A helper can pass out the pre-scooped ice cream to your anxious guests as you cut the cake.

6. Pre-address the thank you card envelopes as you address the invitations. It will save you time later.

7. Do group activities like relay races. Face painting is fun, but it only entertains one child at a time.

8. Anticipate the behavior of your guests. If the class bully is coming, be prepared.

9. Make sure your birthday boy or girl has fun. It's the point to the whole day.

Also see:
Creative invitations
Party planning checklist
Activities for home birthday parties
Questions to ask when booking a birthday party outside the house