Monday, October 31, 2005

That First Birthday Milestone

When your baby turns one, you will experience a range of emotions. Part of you will be happy for this little baby milestone, but another part of you will be sad that your baby is no longer a baby. Still you will want to remember this day fondly by planning a fun birthday bash.

Do not feel the need to offer an extravagant birthday bash for your little one. Parents who have those parties do it for themselves, not for their babies. Your baby will not care if you have hired 50 clowns at the baby. She will be happy with a much less stated affair.

Still you probably want to invite over the grandparents and a couple of friends. Make sure you let everyone know well in advance when the party will be and at what time. Before you invite anyone over, be sure to know what you are planning for the party. That way, if Grandma offers to help out, you know what to tell her. "You know, if you could make some meatballs, that would be great." She will feel included, and you will not have to worry about the meatballs. It works for everyone.

Decide beforehand what you will do at the party. A one-year-old is too young for games, but that does not mean that you shouldn't have some planned if there will be other children there. Plus your one-year-old will be able to play in some fun games, and you can plan to play them when everyone arrives.

Many families have the tradition of having a birthday cake just for the birthday boy. This little cake is the equivalent of a personal pan pizza. It is small, and baby can just have at it. If you plan to have this tradition, you cannot panic about mess! You probably want to save it until the end of the party because unless you gave birth to someone who had been to etiquette school, your baby will make a mess! He or she will dig into the cake and love it! You should sit back and enjoy - just have the bath stuff ready.

Be sure that you get cameras and other items ready before the party. Check the film and the batteries in the camera as you will not want to miss out on this event. Your baby is growing up, and as sad as that may be to you, later on will be the time to look back on it and laugh.

It is most important to relax during the big day. Many moms and dads (but especially moms) get so worked up over the day's events that they find they do not enjoy it. They are so busy trying to make sure that everyone else has a great time that they forget to have one themselves. Do not be one of those moms. Start preparing now so that when the day comes, you have no stress. Plan ahead so that you can enjoy the moment, too!

By Julia Mercer

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