Planning MM’s 1st Birthday Party: Part 1

Last updated on November 16th, 2023 at 05:35 pm

I am starting to plan Missy Moo’s 1st birthday party for June. I know I can’t believe my little girl is turning one year old already. I hate even saying it out loud. I am going to be doing a mini series of posts for ‘planning a 1st birthday party’. I hope you will all find this helpful or at least entertaining.


“Making The Lists”

It’s all about being organized and prepared for me. I am a list maker. I make them for just about everything, right down to my daily “to do” list. As I start to plan Missy Moo’s 1st birthday party, the lists have started!

I start by making a master list! Followed by a few mini lists for each category. My master list is an overview of everything I need to do, contact, research and double check on, guiding me on where to start first.

Master List

– Who will come? Just Family or Friends or Both?

-Formal or Informal Party?

– Choose Venue & Date!

– Design Invites

– Choose a theme / color of decorations

– Design the Cake and who will make it? Yourself? A company?

– Pick the style of food & who will make it? Me? Caterer?

– Design or pick the cake for Cake Smashing Photo Shoot

– Do you want Music & Entertainment?

– Who will help with what?

Then the mini lists start like mini branches to my master list.


Guest List

I make a list of everyone we want to share her magical day with, both family and friends. I put a star next to those that  I will need addresses for and leave blank next to those I can hand deliver the invites to.

Theme List

I make a list of the various themes I have in mind. Do some online research for ideas. Pinterest is great for this. You might even want to make a Pinterest board specifically for the party to keep your ideas all in one place.

Venue List

All the possible local venues, their availability and prices. Some do package deals or have added bonuses. Like our community center was a bonus for Buba’s birthday bash as it was right next to a huge park that we all went to play on after the party since we only had the room for a few hours.

Decor Theme

Once I have chosen my theme and venue, I make a list of all the decorations I want. I start by drawing on a piece of paper what I envision the venue to look like fully decorated. What color of balloons and streams do I want? Do I want bunting? What decorations can I make as a craft project and what will I need to buy for them? These are among the many questions and answers I jot down on this list. Pinterest is also good for ideas on decorations.

Food/Cake List

This list is simple. How many people are coming? What type of party or atmosphere do you want it to have? Buffet style or sit down meal. Usually for a kids 1st birthday cold or hot buffet style or sandwiches are best for socializing and kids playing around. Make sure you have enough cake for everyone. We have gone to so many parties where they just picked a pretty cake and didn’t even have enough cake for everyone. We have to consider allergies for Buba so a place that caters for that is a must for us. Add to this list possible cake makers or designs you want to try to bake yourself.

Entertainment/DJ List

If you are having a small or big party this still applies. Do you want fun music playing in the background? Or a DJ in a pub? Maybe a bouncy castle or a entertainer for the kids? I am making a playlist on my ipod for the music but we are having entertainment from our local music class, Rock N Learn. Most music class teachers do private parties which I didn’t know until I had Buba’s second birthday and it was a hit, and not expensive at all. 

Contact List

This list is part of your master list. Contact name and number for the venue, cake maker, entertainment or DJ if you are having one. Caterer if it’s separate from the venue and you don’t fancy doing it yourself.

Helpers List

Make a list of people that you can ask to do specific things and what they will be doing. It’s always cheap and easier on you if you ask for help. I have friends helping with decorating, making food, making the cake even, and a few to stay behind and help me clean up. It’s not rude to ask. It’s your special moment too with your child as they turn 1! So never be afraid to delegate the chores out so you can enjoy the day to it’s fullest.

Once I have made all my lists many of my questions have been answered and now it’s all about making final decisions and checking off those mini lists as you complete each one. This can be helpful for the smallest or biggest of parties making the process of that special day so much fun and keep you right on track so you have no added pressure when that BIG DAY creeps up on you. Because it always does!

Stay tuned for PART 2: Booking It All & Making The Invites

Post Comment Love

20 thoughts on “Planning MM’s 1st Birthday Party: Part 1”

  1. This is such a fab post Jenny. I’m definitely recruiting you to help plan my 30th birthday party! 😉 xx

    • No problem I used to want to be a party planner. Weddings, birthdays, christening etc. You should have saw Mr P 30th it was amazing. I rented out a barge on the canal for 40 of his closest friends, decorated the whole boat, had a bar and a dj and karaoke on board too and we stopped off two hours into the tour of the city had a fantastic dinner at a pub then hopped back on and partied well into the night. And it was a surprise he had no clue. lol Thought I took him to a dingy pub for his birthday until I asked him to go outside on the deck where everyone was waiting to get on the barge!!! Now that’s how I throw parties!!!! Would love to help! 🙂

  2. How exciting, I love birthday parties. I had a small first birthday party for Mads as her birthday is Christmas Eve so always an awkward time. But this year we had a joint first and third birthday party for the girls in February- it was a bug party and I loved it, they were dressed as a little bumblebee and lady bird and it was so fun. x

    • Thanks Katie. I know me too. I used want to be a party planner. I always throw the parties for friends and family as I am the only organized one. I know I saw the girls birthday it was fantastic. I was in awe of your bug theme and their outfits and all that you posts on your blog about it. So amazing. I won’t be topping you no way. You are too good. lol

  3. Great post! I can’t wait to see her first birthday photos, I bet they will be amazing. I look forward to reading part two x

    • I know it’s exciting yet so sad especially because she is my last baby. So every milestone is another era gone and done with. So sad. I don’t want her to grow up!!! Lol doesn’t it go way too fast?

  4. Wow! That is some organisational skill going on in that post. Your daughter is one lucky girl. I have always been fairly useless in planning Grace’s parties – I guess Christmas doesn’t help! Thank you for linking to PoCoLo 🙂 x


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.