We’ve entered the era of virtual parties and gatherings. As the grown-ups adapt to zoom fatigue, virtual meetings and take solace in virtual reunions, we are shifting focus onto our children. With birthdays flying by, how can parents throw their kids a successful party? As a parent, a virtual party can be easier to host because you’re not having to handle a large group of fiercely free spirited children on your own and you can amplify the joy by inviting those faraway relatives and friends for a momentous celebration. Le Mill spoke to Party A La Carte: a one stop shop for all things party related and party planning service, for a comprehensive guide on throwing a stress-free party.
Which digital portal to choose?
Zoom of course, you may be thinking. Why is this even a question? If you suffer from a weak WiFi connection though, we recommend Discord. It is a little more complicated to set up and you have to be tech savvy but in our experience, the connection is always seamless. An unorthodox option would be Houseparty. The Houseparty app is available on the PC and phone and has in-built trivia, karaoke and pictionary games, which can be kid friendly. Our friends at Party a La Carte, highly recommend Houseparty as an alternative to a traditional platform because you, the overworked parent, can set your kids free to play directly on the app with virtually zero pre-planning.
To decorate or not to decorate?
Does a virtual party really need theme decorations? Can’t we just slap on a Zoom filter and make technology do the work for us? Technically yes, but pop psychology teaches us that physical decorations signal a deeper joy because they keep us tethered to the real world. If we, as grown ups can find joy in a balloon or a little princess crown, imagine how much joy you can spread by giving your little one all the props they need to feel like magic on their special day.
Luckily for you, Party A La Carte has a treasure trove of party props to choose from.
What’s in the hamper, Mom?
Grown up or not, everyone likes receiving packages in the mail. Just because the party can’t come to you doesn’t mean you can’t bring the party to your guests. Send each guest a comprehensive hamper complete with balloons, a little party hat, snacks and cupcakes, along with a return gift, games and customized dinner. If your kids and their friends are into baking you could even send them DIY cookies or cupcakes to decorate. If you want to throw a costume party, you can even send masks. Think of the hamper as your party in a box. Try and send the hamper on the day of the party if you’re planning on sharing a virtual meal together and don’t skimp on the cupcakes if you want your little guests to have some cake left during the cake cutting (Kids have no self control). Party a La Carte does a stellar job of creating these hampers for you.
Did someone say cake?
You can’t spell party without cake. Yes we know that’s not technically true, but what a cake is to a kid’s party is what alcohol is to a grown-up party. You would leave disappointed if it wasn’t there. We know it’s hard to send every guest cake. So instead of a cake, you could just order a cupcake so the other kids don’t get upset. Or send over cake in your hamper, and have a mini cake for your little one to cut during the party. We also recommend hiding the cake from the family so someone doesn’t sneak in a midnight bite. If you’re a home baker, We have some cake-decorating tips, right here.
Is it playtime yet?
Party games are always challenging to come up with. If your child is a little older, why not enlist their help to come up with activities they’d enjoy with you. Given how adept our younglings are with technology, Houseparty and other gaming apps make it easier to play virtually. You could also create ‘treasure hunts’ ,virtual talent shows, or even throw a dance party. Just awaken your inner child and let your imagination run wild. We know parenting is exhausting but it is a second chance at being young again. Party a La Carte also helps parents hire performers like magicians, clowns and game aficionados who guide your kids through a series of games virtually.
Times may be tough but we want nothing more than for our kids to remember this time fondly. Their joy is ours, so as intimidating as it might be, throw your kids a virtual party, give them time to hang out with their peers and play on the balance between structure and freedom. For resources, head over to Party A La Carte.