Survival Tips for a First Birthday Party

It won't matter to your baby whether you throw a catered party for the neighborhood or just have the grandparents over for pizza. How much you do is up to you -- do only what feels fun and festive, and cut back if you get stressed out. Here are some tips to get you through this event.

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Serve a Special Birthday Cake

Serve a Special Birthday Cake

Make or buy a creative cake. Your baby will love looking at the cake as much as eating it.

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Keep It Short

Keep It Short

If there will be other young kids, keep the party short -- an hour or two is plenty.

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Avoid Choking Hazards

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Avoid Choking Hazards

If you want to decorate with balloons, opt for the silver helium-filled kind. Latex balloons are a choking hazard to kids under the age of 4.

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Don't Overload Yourself

Jay Wilde

Don't Overload Yourself

If you're serving food, do yourself a favor and don't try to make everything. For instance, bake the cake but buy deli sandwiches. Or grill burgers and have a bakery do the cake.

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Take Pictures Before the Party

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Take Pictures Before the Party

Take pictures of the cake and of Baby in his birthday outfit before the guests arrive.

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Give Baby Downtime

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Give Baby Downtime

Don't force Baby to be social. With all the attention, your little one may need to retreat for a bit.

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Make Sure There is Plenty of Help

Sang An

Make Sure There is Plenty of Help

Consider hiring a sitter or asking a young relative to stay with the birthday baby when he needs a break.

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Eat Cake the Night Before

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Eat Cake the Night Before

Consider doing the fun part the night before. Strip Baby down to a diaper and let him experience his first piece of cake. Then, if he's too thrown off during the party to enjoy the "real" cake, you won't feel disappointed.

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How to Make a Baby-Handprint Napkin

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