Looking back on my childhood it’s always the slumber parties that I remember clearest. Wishing the week away because on the weekend, I’d be in a room full of my best friends, watching movies all night, laughing and the midnight snacks! Some of my favourite memories were formed during these times (even though I usually had to get picked up because I missed my Mum), I still had the greatest time while I was there. Now as an adult, it’s a slightly more terrifying concept wondering how to host a slumber party but it doesn’t have to be now Sweet Dreams and Goodnight has arrived at the party. They provide a unique, stylish and insta-worthy experience that will be the talk of the group and remembered forever.
Here is how you can make sure your slumber party goes off without a hitch.
What is the best age?
Generally 7+ is a great age to start having slumber parties. They are usually old enough to cope with being away from their parents for the night, are toilet trained and ready to give staying up until midnight a red hot go.
That doesn’t mean the younger ones have to miss out. Hanging out with their best friends in their pjs is something they can’t wait to do. They can have the full experience except with a 9pm pickup time. Probably best to have a couple of parents stay and help you out with this one though.
Who to invite.
Have a look at the space you’ll be using for the party. That will determine how many kids to invite. Also if this is your first party, keep it small! Invite the friends that your child is closest with or limit it to one group so as to avoid any awkward situations of someone being left out. Then there’s always an excuse for another one before the next birthday.
Picking a date.
Traditionally Friday and Saturdays are the best but each have their perks and downsides, pick which one works best for you. I would recommend an arrival time of 4-430pm.
As soon as you have a couple of dates in mind now is a great time to lock in Sweet Dreams and Goodnight to take care of the hard stuff. You’ve got better things to do like pick out what cheese platters you’ll be snacking on and selecting a nice vino.
Keeping them entertained.
It’s all about the planning with this one. Having a list of activities to keep the kids busy and a schedule for the night is essential to a successful slumber party.
This is where Sweet Dreams and Goodnight come in like a knight in shining armour. They take care of all of this for you. If pampering is more the kid’s style, they have a mini spa package available. More into art and getting creative? Then they can decorate their own pillow cases or make dream catchers. Let’s not forget the boys. A scavenger hunt is such a fun way to keep them entertained or book a Glow in the dark slumber package. Everyone loves all things glow in the dark.
Capturing the night is made easy with a photo booth, complete with a box of dress-ups and props. Give them a couple of poses to get the silliness happening then let them run wild. Using a polaroid means they have a copy to take home with them. They’ll have something to go with the memories that will last forever.
How about bringing out the board games? Pictionary, charades or twister will have the room filled with laughter and the kids having the time of their lives. It’s a great way to get them interacting and working together. Especially if there are a few there who don’t know each other.
At some stage you’ll want to start winding the party down and getting the kids ready to start thinking about falling asleep. Get them into their tents or sleeping bags that were set up earlier, fire up the popcorn and get the movie rolling.
Food and Drink.
The idea of a Slumber party is keeping it simple but that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun with it. Why not set up a Taco bar, imagine the excitement as they’re discussing what toppings they’re going to use, comparing what their friends have put on their tacos.
You can’t really go wrong with pizza, if you want to make it more interactive you can get small pita’s and they can put their own toppings on, or save yourself the mess and just order one. Either way it’ll go down a treat.
Who can go past an icecream buffet for dessert? It’s so simple, all you need is a selection of toppings and you’re done.
Popcorn, goes without saying really. You can have a bit of fun with this and have some M&M’s on hand for a warm salty sweet combo.
Which brings us to the most important meal of all, the midnight (or 10pm) snacks! Mini doughnuts and/or cookies are a great idea to pair with a hot chocolate. Giving them the warm and fuzzies from the inside out and ready to drift off in no time.
Keep the party going in the morning with a pancake or waffle buffet. Think fresh fruit, toppings such as honey, jam, maple or chocolate syrup in jars and fresh cream. Yum.
Have some mini water bottles and juices on hand for drinks. Unless you want an all-nighter I’d avoid soft drinks, there’s enough sugar going around as it is.
Now for the not so fun but essential part. It’s these few things that will ensure every situation can be handled efficiently.
Have a note pad on the kitchen bench with each child attending name on it. As they are dropped off, ask their parents to leave their contact numbers, any allergies the child may have, any medication they may need throughout the duration of your care as well as any important information (sleep walkers, fear of the dark etc.)
Once everyone has arrived take everyone on a tour of the house, be sure to cover things such as where they can find the toilet, drinks, food and bedrooms. Make sure they know where you can be found if they need someone throughout the night. During this time lay down the ground rules. Make it clear what that can and can’t do so everyone has a great time.
Leave a night light or lamp on. If they do wakeup during the night they may be disoriented and confused about where they are. They’ll feel safer being able to find their way to you with a light on.
Make sure you remain close by without hovering over them the whole time. Sometimes unfortunate situations arise such as kids getting homesick, wetting the bed or even bullying may even occur. It is a good idea to keep an ear out so you know what’s going on.
Slumber parties are FUN! It’s all about making memories with good friends and having lots of laughter. If you’ve booked Sweet Dreams and Goodnight it’s going to be smooth sailing. Why not invite some of your Mum friends to hang out for a bit and put on some wine and cheese or have a separate movie night in another area of the house. That way there’s more hands to help out with running the activities, more ears to listen out to what’s going on and a chance for you to kick back and enjoy some time together reliving the best parts of your childhood.
Sweetdreams and Goodnight is currently only in W.A however will be available to those residing in the Eastern States in early 2017. To check out their extensive range of packages head on over to https://www.facebook.com/Sweetdreamsandgoodnight/