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Birthday Madness

September 14th, 2009 at 06:39 am

My youngest's birthday is at the end of the month and we're having a party. I'll leave my rambling on about how much I hate hosting kid's birthday parties out, because this is a frugal blog -not a parenting blog!

I had picked out some hand printed invitations on line, which coordinated with personalized thank you notes. Cost: $50.00. I couldn't figure out why a 2 year old would need either of those, so I went to Michaels and got some blank cards and construction paper. My husband spent a couple hours tracing the design I wanted and cutting out the shapes onto the black construction paper. The cost so far: $12.00.

We'll make our own cake this year, and the party favors will be construction hats for each kid: 12 for $6.00. As the party winds down, we're going to have the local construction guy drive his giant digger over to the house so that the kids (and parents!) can have pictures with the digger. Cost? Probably free, but I'm happy to give the guy some $ for his trouble, or at least a piece of cake!

I'm having the party from 2:30 to 4:30, so we'll have appetizers, cake and ice cream -no big meal.

It's a small party, and mostly family, so my hope is that we can unleash the kids outside on the swingset and let them entertain themselves (with supervision, of course!)

Hopefully, this simple approach will turn out not only to be frugal, but will be fun for kids and parents. I am desperately fighting the trend to have over the top parties for kids. We've already been to pizza parties with bouncy houses, cartoon characters, and had fish given to us as party favors. The last party had the ice cream truck come with unlimited ice cream for everyone. Before that, the parents had rented out the entire YMCA for a 4 year old's birthday. I don't want my kids to feel like we don't care about their birthdays -but I definately don't want them growing up thinking that stuff=love, either.

5 Responses to “Birthday Madness”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    If you need another activity at your construction themed party: the kids could build towers or buildings out of legos or blocks. Borrow extra sets from friends or neighbors.

  2. ceejay74 Says:

    Honestly, that sounds like an awesome party that kids will really have fun at. Great idea with the digger--every kid loves big fire trucks and construction vehicles.

  3. monkeymama Says:

    Good Luck!

    Our kids' parties have always been extremely low key. Though most everyone else has some expensive entertainment, fully catered meals, etc., etc. Not sure if we have ever been to another's party without a bouncy house! We pretty much take and bake pizza, make some cupcakes, and let the kids run around. (Ages 1 - 5 - never had any activities - they didn't need any).

    Anyway, everyone raves about our parties, even as they continue with all the show. I think you will be pleasantly surprised. People like it. They may not be brave enough to try it - but they appreciate a simple good time.

    Of course, with my eldest turning 6, we did go to Chuck E Cheese. That was the EASIEST party we ever did! But probably not as much enjoyed by the adults, etc.

  4. whitestripe Says:

    sometimes i can't help but wonder if all those bouncy houses and fancy catering is for the adults rather than the kids. it's the parents that hire all this stuff and make the ghastly big-birthday plans, kids aren't going to notice the difference, and they aren't going to notice how much money is spent either. they are more concerned with eating lollies and cake and playing with their friends. as long as there are activities to do and enough kids to run around with, they will be fine.

  5. Jerry Says:

    That sounds like a great party and it will lead to a lot of smiling faces! I really like your idea of having the construction guy drive his digger over... that will be so cool for the little kids to see. Heck, I'd rather attend this party than one where you have to practically sign an insurance waiver to let your kid jump in a box of plastic balls and eat bad pizza. Yours is MUCH cooler.

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