Party Planning for a Tween

This article, entitled "Party Planning for a Tween," comes from Taryn Vanderford, MomsEveryday blogger from Lincoln, NE.

My son’s officially a “tween.” But what does that word mean anyway? Some say this new word describes youths roughly between the ages of 8 and 14. It’s that time between childhood and the teenage years. “Tween” blends the words “between” and “teen.”

But don’t 8 and 9 seem a little young to be a tween? My 9-year-old daughter does like watching those Disney shows like “Jessie” and “Dog with a Blog”, which I suppose cater to tweens. But to me, a tween should just be for a few years…like ages 11 and 12. Officially a teenager…would be 13 of course.

So, my son turned 12 on July 2nd. And every year, my kids pick a theme for their birthday parties. This year was tough for party planning. What kind of party do you throw for a tween boy? Over the years we’re had everything from a superhero to a platypus party with so many fun games. But, now we needed something a little more grown up. The easy answer? Stick with what he loves…and that’s sports.

I waited until baseball season wrapped up to start the party planning. So, I was running out of time. I found a fun cartoon-like baseball photo invitation at Walgreen’s. It looks like the player is going to hit the ball to Jacob in the field. Both images are about the same size. And for only seven bucks on sale, we had an invitation that got us on base without the major league price.

Linda Hudson at Lincoln’s Butterfly Bakery used her artistic talents to match the cake to the invitation…hitting it out of the ballpark once again.

We hung his baseball jerseys as a backdrop on the window and piled a vintage wire basket with baseballs for a centerpiece atop a blue-checked tablecloth. Jacob wrote “Take me out to the ballgame” on a chalkboard music slate. And for party favors, we handed out “We B Poppin” gourmet popcorn bags with fun candy bar add-ins.

No kiddy games this year. Since Jacob has a summer birthday, we decided to take the kids swimming at the area pool instead. Luckily it was a nice hot July day…perfect for splashing around.

Afterward, everyone enjoyed appetizers and pizza… along with cake and ice cream.

Another party…perfectly suited for my tween boy.

I’ve included a few pictures from the birthday. I'd love to hear how you celebrate tween parties.

Until next time… Happy parenting!


About the Author...
Taryn Vanderford
Taryn Vanderford is an Emmy-winning journalist who currently works on "First at Four", "Pure Nebraska" and "Moms Everyday" for 10/11 and Gray Television.

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