How to Throw a Successful Family Slumber Party

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  Disclosure: This post is in partnership with Disney Book Group. As always, opinions are all my own. 

Our family loves sleepovers and slumber parties! From age 12 down, my kids love being wherever we are all the time, including bedtime. So, for that very reason, we have big family slumber parties twice a month.  I mean, why not?I love making our slumber parties fun, but I don’t like spending a fortune getting the things necessary like snacks, drinks, and entertainment. So, for that reason, I buy popcorn in bulk at the bulk store and I make most of the snacks. Usually, we have one themed snack per movie night, and then the rest are various fruit and veggies on platters.

For the themed treat last week, I made sweet goodnight buddy cookies! Now, we all know I can’t decorate so they didn’t look exactly like Sleepy, the Goodnight Buddy, but I tried!
Last week our main focus of the slumber party was the Sleepy, the Goodnight Buddy book, which was perfect for a slumber party because at the end of the night we can read it, have some laughs, then lights out!
Want to know how we throw fun and highly requested family slumber parties twice a month? Here is my list of must-haves to include:

  • A Themed Treat: Can be anything! A trail mix, some fun fruit, and veggies dressed up to go with your book or movie of the night, even some homemade treats like cookies, popcorn balls, or Krispy treats are a hit!
  • Lots and Lots of Extra Blankets: Take it from me — you’ll need them! I highly recommend everyone bring their favorite blanket to the party and use their own because I know from experience, blankets will be stolen in the middle of the night!
  • Flashlights: What is a slumber party without fun lights flashing throughout the night? We keep a few on hand for these occasions, the kids love it!
  • Fun Puzzles: We run to the dollar store and grab three new puzzles every slumber party. It gives the kids something to do when we aren’t reading or watching the night’s movie!
  • Books and Games: Everyone loves to read, and play games. Have some on hand, especially if you have multiple kids; they’ll want to do various activities!
  • A Movie: We settled in with a movie after all the fun. Keep it fun, engaging, and age-appropriate, and the kids will stay up to watch it (while some of the littles do tend to fall asleep!)
  • A THEME: This is a big one for us. We pick themes. If I get a new book or new movie, or even a new fun family game, we focus our night around that. While I don’t decorate because, let’s be real, who has the time, I do make a themed treat to go along with it – and make sure all kids know what the theme is and learn about that topic. In the case of this post, it was Sleepy, the Goodnight Buddy.

Sleepy, the Goodnight Buddy

By Drew Daywalt, Illustrated by Scott Campbell
In Stores September 11
Recommended for ages 3+

A hilarious twist on a classic bedtime story: When a boy who routinely refuses to go to bed gets a talkative stuffed animal, the tables are turned!

It is impossible not to crack up while reading this all-dialogue bedtime story by Drew Daywalt, the New York Times #1 best-selling author of The Day the Crayons Quit. Scott Campbell’s expressive illustrations bring home the hilarity. Roderick hates going to bed, and the young boy has become quite resourceful in coming up with ways to delay the dreaded hour when the lights must go out. Roderick’s loving parents–fed up with the distractions and demands that have become his anti-bedtime ritual–decide to get him a stuffed animal to cuddle with and help him wind down. However, Sleepy quickly proves to be a bit high-maintenance. Just when we fear the night may never end, Sleepy’s antics become too exhausting for Roderick to bear.About the Author
Drew Daywalt is a dad and an author, best known for writing the best-selling children’s books The Day the Crayons Quit and its sequel, The Day the Crayons Came Home, both illustrated by Oliver Jeffers. Drew is also the author of The Legend of Rock, Paper, Scissors, illustrated by Adam Rex, and Star Wars: BB-8 on the Run, illustrated by Matt Myers. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children, who always go to bed on time like perfect little angels and never fuss or try to stay up ever ever ever.

About the Illustrator
Scott Campbell draws pictures for all kinds of children’s books, including Zombie in Love; East Dragon, West Dragon; and XO, OX, A Love Story. He is the author/illustrator of the very popular Hug Machine. Scott lives in New York City. Follow his adventures on Instagram and Twitter @scottlava.

Do/Did you have family slumber parties? What made them fun and unique for you?

How to Throw a Successful Family Slumber Party


  • Reply Jeanette September 19, 2018 at 10:03 am

    I think that is a fun idea! My kiddo every once in a while does have a sleepover with friends and I know they stay up all hours of the night. It might be fun to do it as a family too and just have an all nighter with the family.

  • Reply Teresa September 19, 2018 at 10:39 am

    This is such a great idea for family nights and family bonding. I used to do this when my kiddos were much younger, and they thoroughly enjoyed it each time! This looks like a great theme night for kiddos

  • Reply Alli Smith September 19, 2018 at 10:39 am

    I love to have the grandkids over for slumber parties and I’m always looking for new tips and ideas. You have some great ones here. I always try to find an easy craft and some fun games.

  • Reply Anosa Malanga September 19, 2018 at 10:52 am

    Lots of popcorns and snacks plus movie series would be what I will prepare for our slumber party. Of course, some board games to keep us up and add some things to do.

  • Reply Amber Myers September 19, 2018 at 10:54 am

    This sounds like an amazing book! I’m not sure if I could do a family slumber party because I need my space when I sleep, but I we do movie and book nights which are always a lot of fun.

  • Reply Tasheena September 19, 2018 at 11:03 am

    Love your tips! A good read always make for the perfect way to start and conclude a successful slumber party.

  • Reply Candy September 19, 2018 at 11:03 am

    These are fun ideas. My daughter airs up the mattress and the grandkids get to watch and have a fun evening.

  • Reply Kita roberts September 19, 2018 at 11:42 am

    This is such a fun idea. It’s almost like having a campout in the house (with less mosquitos, a big plus). And I’ll have to add that book to the queue, great review.

  • Reply Ashley September 19, 2018 at 12:12 pm

    We LOVE Sleepy!! I swear that book was written about my child.

  • Reply Tomi C September 19, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    We set up the tent in the den once. It wasn’t for them… it was for me. I just couldn’t do the whole sleep in the backyard thing. Bugs, snakes, mosquitos… no, no and no. So we pitched the tent in the den, popped some corn and watched movies all night long. It was fun

  • Reply Dennis Littley September 19, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    The theme idea sounds like a really good way to make it come to life especially if it’s a book or a movie. Sounds like the sleepovers are a lot of fun!

  • Reply Pam September 19, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    Sleepy the Goodnight Buddy looks like such a cute book. Perfect for reading during a home sleepover party.

  • Reply Terri Steffes September 19, 2018 at 9:42 pm

    I miss reading books with my kid. It was and still is, my all time favorite thing to do. I read to my neighborhood kids!

  • Reply Ricci September 20, 2018 at 1:58 am

    I love a good slumber party and can’t wait until my nieces and. nephews are old enough to have them!! I would totally help watch them!!

  • Reply Angela Ricardo Bethea September 20, 2018 at 12:22 pm

    Ain’t no slumber party without great snacks and awesome games. Great tips, those would make an amazing slumber party.

  • Reply swathi September 20, 2018 at 2:39 pm

    Love all the snack and cookies you made for the slumber party, kids are enjoying. I like that you did this inside of home as outside will be mosquitoes.

  • Reply Fatima Torres September 20, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    We love reading before bed. Even when have family and friends stop by. We have them join us for reading time.

  • Reply Kita Bryant September 20, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    These are some really great ideas! Family slumber parties were always a blast when I was younger.

  • Reply Heather October 4, 2018 at 9:37 am

    This book is so cute. We have it also. These are great tips for a slumber party!

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