Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tightwad Tuesday: Birthday Edition

My son turns 3 this week and his party is Saturday morning, so birthday planning is on my mind. My number one tip for planning birthday parties is to keep it simple. It is way too easy for parents to go overboard when the kids could really care less. Here are a few other tips I've learned since having a child:

Paper goods: The best place to buy paper goods is at the dollar store. I usually pick a theme for his party and then buy paper products in a solid color to go with that theme. For his first birthday, I even found Elmo plates and napkins at the dollar store. Many times, these are the same brands as are sold at the more expensive party stores.

Presents: Chances are, your child will be overwhelmed with gifts from family and friends. We only buy 2-3 gifts for our child for his birthday. We also do not take everything out of the box at once. A few gifts are hidden back and pulled out once he becomes bored with his new toys. It is also a good idea to put away a few of their regular toys so they can be pulled out later too. The old toys will seem new again after awhile.

Decorations: Once again, keep it simple. I have a friend who finds coloring pages related to the theme, colors them, then laminates them. She uses this as placemats for when the kids eat cake. The kids love this and usually comment on their placemat. I've also used the coloring sheets as decoration around the house by posting them on the doors and walls.

Favors: Favors are not really needed but they are fun and the kids enjoy them. I started a tradition last year of giving away iced sugar cookies as favors. I make enough so the adults can have them too. I have a set of cookie cutters that are numbers so this year everyone is getting a number 3 cookie. They are also getting a cookie with the theme which happens to be farm animals. Cookies are cheap to make and are a fun project with the birthday child. I made the cookies last week and froze them so it would be less to do before the party. We will ice them on Friday and package them up once the icing dries.

Do you have any frugal birthday tips you would like to share? Feel free to leave a comment or a link to your blog post on the topic.


DiamondDaisy said...

Hey! I can't say I have a frugal tip on kids parties (guess I need a kid first!), but I do have a great cookie tip! I love reading the blog Bake at 350 (http://bakeat350.blogspot.com/) and her tip for cookies is to put them in the freezer for 5 - 10 minutes before you bake them, and the keep their shapes better when baking. This also makes them easier to decorate! Just thought I would pass it along! :) Enjoy and HAPPY BIRTHDAY SAMUEL!!!

Anonymous said...

Birthday parties for kids can be costly. Do the free ones. For my
son's 9th bithday we took a group of partiers on a local hike through the woods at a conservation. After we had cake and ice cream. The kids loved it. No mess at my house.
Another party was free--I made a carnival in the back yard. Coffee cans for knocking down with a ball.
Ring toss, dodge ball, etc. The kids had fun. Serve cake etc.

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