For the last 6-months or so I’ve been planning a surprise party for my hubby, B — this quickly turned into a bit feat as we got closer to the actual surprise date! You see, I get really excited about presents I pick out, gifts, or surprises – I like to bait people and often can’t wait, just wanting to spill the beans. Planning this party was definitely a test of that (that I passed!) but was also a bit stressful, yet very exciting!
So here are a few tips and areas to focus on when planning a surprise party!
Plan a Date. Since B’s birthday is a few days after Christmas, it often gets looped in with the holiday and overlooked – so I wanted to make sure we avoided the holiday but also wanted it to be close. Since December tends to be a busy month for everyone I planned over the summer and sent out my digital Save the Dates. I also picked a Friday night, thinking it’d be easier for me to sneak away on a work day than a regular Saturday.
Location. This one can be tricky! I initially had the perfect place picked out with an ideal party room – then they closed over the summer. The options got smaller and I got picker, so the fall back was our house, that way I could control the food, decorations, alcohol, etc. I just needed to keep the hubby away long enough to get the house decorated and sneak 30-people inside.
Plan the Diversion. I wracked my brain on this for months, until I finally reached out to MW to help with the diversion – he was all over it and a HUGE help to this all working out! This started getting planned just a few weeks before, and then initiated with B the week of the party – drinks after work, and then getting back to the house in time for the surprise!
Pick a Theme & Decorate. To keep a somewhat complex event, simple – I wanted to stick with a classic color scheme of gold, black and white! I kept decorations easy too, with lots of balloons, big gold number balloons, fun themed thirty banners, some ‘Vintage 1988’ plastic cups, pictures of the birthday boy and a photo booth with polaroids. Pro-tip: Buy a mini-helium tank, it’s easier and cheaper!
Food & Drink Favorites. Since I was hosting, I could pretty much pick whatever for the food and I wanted to make sure to incorporate some of B’s favorite things. To do this, I ordered chips and salsa from his favorite spot picked up dark chocolate pretzels, another favorite! From a beverage perspective, I made sure there was plenty of B’s favorite Christmas beer – and our friends/families brought plenty of beer options for him too!
My goal was to plan a surprise party for B to celebrate his upcoming 30th, while keeping it simple and intimate – which isn’t easy to do with big families and lots of friends, but somehow I think I pulled it off! B was DEFINITELY surprised and had no idea, I kept the charade up all day – even though I took a half day and had planning for months. Another plus of planning so early is I slowly ordered decorations and party supplies throughout the months so I really only needed to worry about the food the week of!
It was fun, but I don’t think I’ll be planning another surprise party anytime soon!