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Celebrate your toddler’s first birthday

Paul Banas
Author Paul Banas
Submitted 22-05-2007

It’s been almost a year since your baby was born. Twelve unforgettable months have gone by. This calls for a celebration.



Remember, at this point, a party is more for family, close friends, and you. You’re better off inviting fewer other kids and surrounding yourself with people who will dote on your baby, who is the star of the show. Here are a few tips to remember:



  1. Charge the batteries for the videocam and digital camera. This is an event that demands a lot of photos.


  2. Don’t forget a cake and don’t forget to take pictures of it. Kids later on love to know that mom and dad celebrate each and every one of their birthdays.


  3. Keep the party relatively short, limited to about 1 ½ hours. That’s about all a baby can handle.


  4. Schedule the party carefully around the nap times of your child, as well as any other little invitees.


  5. If inviting other babies, keep the numbers small, ideally only 1-3.


  6. Especially if you have other babies present, be relaxed and flexible. Tears, tantrums, biting, vomiting…it’s all possible at a 1 year baby free-for-all.


  7. If other babies are present, keep lots of toys on the floor to keep them occupied.


  8. Since you’re the dad, think of high tech or low tech “dadly” ways to commemorate the big event. Some ideas:



    • Take pictures or movies and make an iMovie edited documentary of the event.


    • Grab a coffee can, plastic box, or other container and make a time capsule including key items from the birthday, including written comments from guests. Make sure mom and dad write a special note about how you feel about your child and your wishes, predictions and dreams for him or her.


    • Take the time to list important developmental milestones of your baby.

Mostly, have a relaxed time. A first birthday party might be the first occasion for you where the babies are running the household. Relax and be aware that anything might happen and probably will.

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