Creative Ways to Have a Party
Both of my kids have birthdays in September. (So do me, my mom and my grandmother, but we don't have parties anymore. Just lots of cake.) We typically don't do birthday parties, but they're getting older, and have been to quite a few. So when my husband said the other day, "Maybe we should have a party for Caroline and Carter," I gave in. I mean, how could we have a party for Caroline, turning 7, and not one for Carter, turning 4, even though we didn't have anyone more than my parents for any of Caroline's birhdays until she was 5?
But my first thought was, how will we afford two parties? Sure, neither one would be big. We limited Caroline to inviting 7 people, and Carter only has 4 other kids in his preschool class. But still, you have to buy them a present, the cute little plates and napkins, the treat bags, and something to occupy the time of the kids.
Here are a few things I did to trim the costs of the birthday parties.
* Made my own cake. Sure, it wasn't fancy. But who really cares? As long as it tastes good and there are candles to blow out, the kids are happy. I spent about $3 on the cake mix and icing, $1 on candles and $2 on special writing icing, pink glitter to make Caroline happy.
* I took the idea from this article, "Creative Ideas for Party Treat Bags," and made the craft be the treat. I did do a treat bag to give away too, but it only had a few pixie sticks and a $1 water color set, to go along with the craft we did, which was decorating a wooden picture frame. I found them at Michael's for $1, and bought the acrylic paints to go with it for a total of $5. So for 7 kids, I got craft and treat bags done for under $30.
* Had the party in our backyard. It's always fun to go to Skateland or a bounce house, but whether one kid or 20 come, you still have to pay for the facility. Maybe next year we'll go skating, but for this year, the backyard worked just fine. (If your kid's birthday is in January or July, maybe the basement would work better.)
What do you do for your kids birthdays? Comment on the blog and share your tips with the rest of our Piedmont Parent community.
-- Karen Alley, Web editor.