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Children’s party: etiquette guide for organizing children’s birthdays

The time has come to celebrate the your son’s birthday🇧🇷 For everything to go flawlessly, we invited three etiquette and style consultants to answer the questions that haunt every first-time mother (and organizer of children’s parties): journalist Celia Ribeiro, author of the books Etiquette in Practice and Good Manners & Success in Business🇧🇷 Cláudia Matarazzo, consultant and writer, with ten published books; and Christiana Francini, author of Style Secrets and pregnant with style🇧🇷

Who to invite? Since the buffets charge per person, do you need to include the nanny?

A small child will not go unaccompanied, so the best thing to do is calculate at least one more person for each guest under 7 years old. When inviting, the birthday boy’s mother can ask who will accompany the child. Nowadays many mothers send the nanny earlier and arrive later, usually after work. For Cláudia Matarazzo, the best thing is to organize a smaller party, just for the family.

Is it legal to invite someone who doesn’t have a child?

Children’s parties are not usually the preferred program for adults, so the ideal is to only invite those who don’t have children if there is great intimacy between the parents and the guest. This is usually the case with the godmother and godfather of the birthday person or close family friends.

Do you need to invite only small children?

No, but it is essential to take into account the type of recreation planned for the party, emphasizes consultant Celia Ribeiro. Older children no longer stay with the nanny, but require supervision and entertainment according to age group.

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How to invite: just a phone call or do you need an invitation?

It is always better that it be in writing, so that there are no mistakes about the address, date and times – of the beginning and end of the party. It doesn’t have to be anything formal – just a cute invitation, like those sold in good stationery stores, or even an online invitation. If the party is very elaborate, there are still creative and fun options according to the birthday theme.

How long in advance should you notify about the party?

A week in advance is more than enough. However, if the party takes place close to holidays and commemorative dates, the ideal is to notify parents 15 to 20 days in advance, so that everyone has time to plan and not miss going to their child’s birthday.

What to serve: children and parents?

Children like hot dogs, sandwiches, baked snacks, cheese bread, mini-hamburgers, popcorn and soft drinks. Brigadeiro is the favorite sweet, as well as candies and mini-chocolates. Adults can be served more sophisticated canapés and sandwiches. To drink, the most common thing is to offer beer, but whiskey and champagne are also good choices.

If the child finds that old family friend strange, how to act?

When the little ones find someone strange, the best attitude is not to force an approach and explain the situation to the adult, who in turn must understand what is going on. Many children act like this anyway, and it’s part of their natural development.

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Should parents thank gifts one by one?

It may seem strange, but at a children’s party, gifts are only opened after everyone has left, which avoids turmoil among the younger guests. At buffets, a hostess writes the guest’s name on the package so the birthday person’s parents can know who gave what. In the following days, it’s nice to call to comment and thank you.

What is the best time?

The best time for a first birthday party, for example, is at 5pm. If it’s Saturday or Sunday, it might be earlier. As for older children, the time may vary according to the theme of the birthday, such as a pool party or a farm-style party, which can start at lunch and last all afternoon. It is worth remembering that, in these cases, the menu should be more varied and in greater quantity.

Is it inelegant to set a time for the party to end?

It is not inelegant, but necessary, to set a time limit: from 5 pm to 8 pm, for example.

Should the gift please the child (toy) or the mother (clothes)?

For 1 year olds, whatever, because they still don’t quite understand what’s going on. The older ones tend not to hide their disappointment when they open a package of clothes.

Do you have to give a souvenir?

The souvenir is not mandatory, but it has been institutionalized in recent years. The little guests always wait for her at the end of the party. It can range from candies, lollipops and bonbons to toys or school supplies, such as colored pencils, modeling clay, coloring books. The important thing is to be creative and avoid pieces that are too small, dangerous for children under 3 years old. Today, some parents offer souvenirs even for the guests’ mothers, such as moisturizer kits or scented water for environments.

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What to do if the birthday boy falls asleep before congratulations?

Maybe it’s a sign that the celebration was too long. To avoid embarrassment, keep an eye out and anticipate the time to blow out the candle if you see that your child is getting tired, even if not all the guests have arrived. If the baby slept… the way is to wait to wake up.

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