First birthday party alternatives
Why we’re not throwing a huge 1st birthday party.
Unlike pretty much every Instagram mum I see, I’m not going to be throwing the traditional $1000+ first birthday party with all the bells and whistles.
I don’t really see anything wrong with not having a huge party, as long as my baby still has a very special day surrounded by the people she loves!
As she gets older, I do fully plan to have big kids parties, but there’s a few reasons why we’re not going to be doing it when she’s turning one.
She will not fully understand what a huge party is about yet.
As she’s only just turning one, everything new she encounters gives her loads of entertainment and joy as she learns. She only understands a few things that we say.
She’s not the biggest on loads of noise either, so not having a million people in her space at once is better for her.
We don’t have many friends to invite!
As we’ve gone through many changes in the last year, including mummy not having a car and moving house, we haven’t been able to get out and hang out with little babies as much as we would like and make good friends with any yet.
Budget is really tight!
We don’t have a lot of money to spend this year as we’ve had so many big changes happening, including another bubba to prepare for and a house move, amongst other more annoying challenges that adulthood presents.
We would rather put what we can into giving her presents she will love for the now and the future, instead of splitting what we have and having to do something mediocre for both presents and a party.
I’m going to be very pregnant at that point
Personally, I’m also going to be heavily pregnant at this point, with my due date only 8 weeks after little one’s first birthday. This is going to make it hard on me – I am already starting to feel the exhaustion of pregnancy now!
I have a lot of things I need to prepare for and stay on top of in the lead up to this time, and don’t want to overwhelm myself with the big physical and mental stress that comes with adding a party to that mix.
We don’t have the time to plan properly!
Honestly I’ve been running around like a headless chicken trying to get so many things done this year, and this could be you too. Planning a good party for your little one takes time to ensure you’re going to get everything perfect!
10 things to do instead of having a birthday party this year
I know there’s lot’s of other mums that are stuck for ways to celebrate their babies first birthday in a special way, so I’ve put together some ideas of how you can celebrate your little one’s first birthday below.
If the weather permits, invite a few close family members that baby loves over for a barbeque outside.
You can include things like BYO alcohol for adults, a lunch and a start and finish time without having to spend a month stressing and planning a full party for your littlest one.
Dinner with close family at a local restaurant
If it’s colder weather when bubs turns one, why not make a booking for your family and some close family or friends at a nice restaraunt?
Taking little one year olds out in public food places can be messy, so pre-prepare for this by bringing plenty of wipes, a rubbish bag and plenty of entertainment.
Birthday Cake (obviously)
Every kid needs a birthday cake!
You could do a cake smash photoshoot, by setting up a cute backdrop and letting baby destroy a cake.
Another nice way to make this special is to either bake your own artistic cake creation, my mum always did this and having ‘homemade’ cakes felt special. Mummy made a cake just for me, you know?
Or, if baking and making a cake will turn out looking like Frankenstein, maybe invest a few extra dollars in a fancy cake from a cake shop that will delight your child’s imagination.
Day trip to an fun kid friendly destination nearby eg Water or Adventure Park, local history park.
If you’re willing to spend a bit of money, taking the day out to go somewhere really kid friendly can be a great way to treat your child on their special day.
You also get the luxury of enjoying yourself as well, and have many opportunities for adorable photos!
Going somewhere local can be a bit cheaper, relieve the stress of a long tiring journey and you won’t have to worry about insanely huge spaces and amounts of people.
Their choice of everything day
Simply do what they want to do, all day!
Make all their favorite foods, visit all their favorite people, and play all day with them!
Let them get extra messy, let them spend extra long in the bath, let them stay awake if they’re not wanting a nap.
Also a great option if you don’t have the money to spend on anything too up there, while still spoiling your little one.
Afternoon tea with a few favorite friends
Have a couple of little one’s friends come over for an afternoon playtime and afternoon tea with their mums.
Keep it sweet and casual, there doesn’t have to be a million people there, your little one will be so excited with even just two of their besties coming over for a play!
You shouldn’t make too much fuss about other people bringing presents or setting it up as a full-blown ‘party’.
Little things will make all the difference!
Bake some cute cupcakes, have some balloons for the kids to play with, take photos, and relax!
Visit the Zoo, Aquarium or just have a big city day, or go to the seaside
If you have a bit of money and don’t mind big crowds, go to the zoo or aquarium, or just have a big city day! Kids adore animals, and the zoo and aquarium are great learning places to nurture this!
Country kids could adore having an adventure day in a big city place they’ve never seen before, and likewise city kids could have never seen a beach or a farm!
Make your little one’s birthday extra special by giving them new experiences!
Letter to your child (tradition)
Every year, starting on that first birthday, have mummy and daddy write separate letters to give to your child when he/she turns 18.
Make it short and sweet and include photos and little mementos if you have any! You can write about why that peg in the envelope was so important because they nearly ended their lives on it at 9 months old, or a bits of wrapping paper from all their presents. You could put a little money in the letter.
It’s all up to you, and there’s so many different things you could want to include.
Doing this every year will make a super special present to give on their 18th birthday.
Make a memory bear out of their old baby clothes as a gift or memory frame
If you’re more on the creative side, you could make a memory bear out of their cutest old baby clothes and an online pattern.
This is a very cheap and special gift to give, if you have the talent and time!
Stitch their name and birthdate into the feet for an extra personal touch.
Also, if your not as talented in creating a whole bear, you could create a photo frame for their wall filled with memories and clothes from their first year.
There’s plenty of ideas for a memory frame online too, grab some photos for inspiration and get creative!
Family or solo photoshoot
Another way to celebrate the one year old milestone is through a professional session with a photographer.
You can get some really stunning photos out in nature, or opt for an indoor shoot if the weather is too cold!
Can cost a bit of money, but the investment is well worth it. These are the photos that you will forever have and they will want too.
I really suggest doing a shoot with just bub, mummy and daddy, and make them feel really special about their birthday shoot.
I don’t have anything against anyone that wishes to throw a traditional birthday party for their one year old. I think it’s such a gorgeous special way to celebrate the occasion if budget and all other factors allow!
Fortunately there are plenty of alternatives to a first birthday party if for whatever reason you won’t be able to have one. As long as your child is the star of their day and surrounded by so much love and excitement, they really will not miss it at all.
Let me know in the comments below your thoughts on birthday’s, or save this post for ideas later!
Thanks for reading 🙂