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for wanting 15 kids in our small house for my girls' 3rd birthday party

(24 Posts)
Shelly32 Sat 13-Oct-12 18:02:06

Our DDs will be 3 this year and were born, weatherwise, in one of the grimmest months of the year. We've had family meals out to celebrate their 1st and 2nd b'days but thought that they'd probably really like a proper birthday party this year.
Our house is 2 bed and pretty small but I'd be quite happy to have their friends and cousins over for party food and a DVD. DH thinks we should hire a hall and an entertainer.
We've just been to a party with an entertainer that cost a fortune and while all the kids loved it, I'd rather put the money spent towards a holiday that we could all enjoy in the summer.
I want the girls to have a great birthday but don't want to spend a fortune. AIBU and would it be a washout to have a simple party at our house, even though it would be a squash? I just don't know what most kids parents expect. I'm sure our girls will be happy with whatever, as long as they have their friends/family around but there does seem to be this expectation that you need to provide some form of entertainment.

gordyslovesheep Sat 13-Oct-12 18:05:26

hire a SMALL hall - take a CD player and some party food - you don't NEED an entertainer or a big venue but it might be easier than having your house wrecked

Inneedofbrandy Sat 13-Oct-12 18:06:04

If you have a garden I would do it at yours. Get a cheap pinata, pass the parcel and pin the tail on the donkey. Add party food and cakes bit of music lots of wine to cope with it and it will all be fine. Save the bigger parties for when they will remember them bitter experience of money wasted

fatlazymummy Sat 13-Oct-12 18:07:56

It should be fine. Everyone used to do this at one time. I would just put any breakables away.

Shelly32 Sat 13-Oct-12 18:10:39

Thanks gordyslovesheep and Inneedofbrandy Small hall sounds like a good compromise with DH. I'm not sure whether pinata smashing in the middle of December, more than likely piddling with rain and freezing, would work but the lots of wine sounds like a fantastic idea!!! If I supply enough it won't just be the the girls who won't remember their 3rd birthday grin

Inneedofbrandy Sat 13-Oct-12 18:13:08

You can have the pinata inside, hang if off a door frame.

Inneedofbrandy Sat 13-Oct-12 18:14:18

Oh Oh I forgot a great idea. If you do go with a hall make it a rollarskate and scooter party. Then you don't need an entertainer or party games!

sassytheFIRST Sat 13-Oct-12 18:16:07

Shop around - a small parish hall can be had for £25 sometimes. If you are lucky there may be a playgroup based there and you can arrange to borrow their toys - if not, ask some of the guests' mums to bring a ride on toy with them. Play dough table, colouring table and some old fashioned games. And wine as well as cups of tea for parents who stay.

Shelly32 Sat 13-Oct-12 18:17:10

What a great idea!!! The girls LOVE their scooters! Thank you so much! I would never have thought of that!! Inneedofbrandy thanks

gordyslovesheep Sat 13-Oct-12 18:17:30

just plan it like a military operation

have lots of dancing games (musical bumps, musical statues, dancing comps) pass the parcel - food time - 'Happy Birthday' and cake - home time!

cakebar Sat 13-Oct-12 18:18:30

Realistically 15 3 year olds will not watch a DVD, they will all get over excited and want to do something. You could put toys out/do a pass the parcel at home but I think a small hall is better.

Shelly32 Sat 13-Oct-12 18:23:22

Being new to the whole 'kids' parties' thing I really appreciate all of this advice!

MikeOxardForHalloween Sat 13-Oct-12 18:26:17

We're having 12 including dd for her 3rd birthday in a few weeks, all in our house! We are going to have zones, so food in the kitchen, free play in the dining room and games (musical bumps, pin tail on donkey, pass the parcel) in the lounge. We did similar last year and it worked really well. All the parents said it was great, which surprised me a lot as it was nothing fancy at all. Sticking to a winning formula for this one! I wouldn't worry about parents' expectations, the kids will love it and if the kids are happy the parents are happy! x

Growlithe Sat 13-Oct-12 18:30:34

I agree with cakebar - at 3 they don't expect much, but I can't see them sitting down to a DVD. We went to a 3rd birthday in a small house this year, and TBH it seemed incredibly stressful for the hosting parents. They do need room to run around at this age, I think this is probably as important as what entertainment you provide, especially after they've eaten loads of sweets and cake healthy party food.

For extra fun which won't cost you a penny - fancy dress grin

lazzaroo Sat 13-Oct-12 20:16:13

We are doing the party thing for first tine this year too, it's 3rd birthday (also in Dec) and is a few weeks before next baby born. For this reason, plus space at home, rubbish weather etc we've decided to hire somewhere. Also because at that age you have to accommodate parents as well as kids! Anyway, we've found local school sports centre that hires out hall, including bouncy castle and lots of soft play plus separate room to have food for £60. Don't know your budget but maybe worth investigating your local leisure centre or seething similar.

LaBelleDameSansPatience Sat 13-Oct-12 20:20:40

We hired our village hall for £15, borrowed some play group toys, used their tables and chairs for the tea, took along a CD player and a couple of pass the parcels, made tea/bubbly for accompanying parents in the kitchen ... great party.

CrapBag Sat 13-Oct-12 20:22:50

We hired a hall this year, £10 an hour, only had to pay for 2 hours and they let you in early and stay late to set up and clear up without charging extra.

I booked a DJ that DS really wanted and had seen before and was brilliant.

20 minutes to go and the DJ wasn't there. I phoned him and he had forgotten!!!!!!

Got my friends to help, one brought a box of dressing up clothes, some play tents, a massive roll of paper to tape to the floor and some crayons to do colouring, they quickly wrapped some emergency parcels for pass the parcel and musical bumps etc, then got a cd player and another very out going friend to lead the party and games.

The kids absolutely loved it (4 year olds party) and it saved me £100.

You can have an empty room and some balloons and kids that age will love it. You could also get some face paints too and do it yourself, if you aren't artistic (like me) you can get stencils.

aufaniae Sat 13-Oct-12 20:25:41

It's worth checking out prices local to you.

A place near us charges £8 per child for the soft-play including meals.

The place is brilliant but the food was pretty uninspiring for party food (e.g. fish fingers and happy faces) so we asked if we could bring our own.

They dropped the price to £5 a head and gave us our own separate room to have the party tea in (as they didn't want their normal visitors seeing our food!)

It was brilliant, the DCs (mostly 3) loved it, and it cost only £45 for 9 DCs + the food of course.

Joiningthegang Sat 13-Oct-12 20:30:29

All i will say is it isn't x15 3 yr olds, it is x15 3 yr olds plus at least 15 adults (not usually left alone at 3) plus several babies and some older siblings.

For sanity i would be tempted to at least look for a cheap hall.

aufaniae Sat 13-Oct-12 20:37:05

We invited 3 of DS's friends for a small get together the other year. They came with 3 siblings and 5 parents, we had 14 of us in our front room!

No idea where we'd put 15 DC plus parents!

YouOldSlag Sat 13-Oct-12 20:37:10

Oh please get a hall. Think this through. if you had it at home you have 15 3 yos needing the toilet at various times, or some might still be in nappies. Parents might want or need to stay.

Remember that overcrowding is not just stressful for adults but for children too. They always get excited by the company of other children, so hire a hall and give them room.

The things that adds £££ is paying an entertainer-they can cost about £80 an hour! other posters have made great suggestions: scooter, fancy dress, pass the parcel. Sod the entertainer, put out food, take a CD player, call it fancy dress and have fun. I bet you could do the whole thing for £50 all in.

Shelly32 Sat 20-Oct-12 22:25:07

Thank you all for the great ideas!I think a hall is the way forward. We've found a church hall that charges £12 an hour and will probably be going down the CD player and musical bumps route! Looked at entertainers' fees and broke out in a sweat! Cheers again!

socharlotte Sat 20-Oct-12 22:35:29

You are barking mad.Invite 5 max!

borisjohnsonshair Sat 20-Oct-12 22:43:09

I'd just like to add that if you do do it, then make the most of it, because you'll never, ever do it again [been there done that emoticon]

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