- No buffet for kids. They seem completely unable to make a selection and they will end up picking the first snack they see. If you want them to have a decent meal then lunch boxes seem to work really well. The kids are excited to get their own box and they usually eat most of what's inside.
- Seating on the floor is very messy. I would recommend seating them at a table if you can, unless you are having an outdoor picnic.
- Have more boxes than guests. Siblings may turn up unannounced and it is better to be prepared.
- Give them food that they find easy to eat. You won't have time to help every one of them.
- They will spill and make loads of crumbs. And they can't use napkins !
Here is what I served them for the Bear Hunt party.
A small cream cheese and ham sandwich, a packet of crisps (bear crisps !), a cone of carrots and peppers, a yogurt and fruity treat. This was actually quite a lot for them and I will prepare a smaller picnic next time. Since most yogurts and treats were left, I won't be including them in the future. There are usually enough treats on the dessert table.
I also always have fruits available. I made fruit skewers for the Rainbow party and the children seem to have enjoyed them.
For drinks I always have water bottles available.
Chocolate milk last sunday was a big hit, they loved it.
Otherwise I tend to include a juice in their lunch box.
Not two children are the same but I have noticed that mine are not too keen on their birthday cake. It is just for show and required to blow the candles but they'd much rather eat cupcakes.
Therefore I always have cupcakes for them to eat during the party and the big birthday cake is for the grown ups. A slice of the cake is also given to every child to take home, it seems to be the normal thing to do here in the UK.
Remember to ask parents about dietary requirements and I think it is better to stay clear of nuts altogether.
A note to parents with younger siblings. Beware of hard candy lollipops. My 2 year old nearly chocked on one during the party last sunday when the candy broke off the stick. I will not have those lollipops again.
I never use tooth picks/cocktail sticks or very pointy skewers.