scale back the guest list Consider inviting only a small group of family and close friends. Not only will this keep costs down, but it also takes the pressure off you to entertain a large crowd. Besides, your baby's turning 1 -- not getting married!
watch the clock Nothing puts a damper on a good time quicker than a crying baby. "The best time of day for a party is when your baby is well rested and happy, usually right after a nap," says Annabel Karmel, author of Complete Party Planner. "I'd suggest having a lunchtime gathering, so it's all over before the late-afternoon crankies." And while it's best to keep the party short and sweet, "there's no reason why you can't excuse the guest of honor for bedtime and continue the festivities in her absence," says Lisa Kothari, author of the kids' party-planning book Dear Peppers and Pollywogs....
keep it low-key Luckily, you're still a few years away from bringing in a petting zoo or renting an inflatable bouncy castle. Pull out your baby's favorite toys (and maybe a few new ones), blow bubbles, and play some of his favorite tunes --that's all the entertainment you need.
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