Friday, January 20, 2012

frugal Birthday Parties

frugal birthday parties
Kids Love Homemade Cakes
We love to celebrate our children's birthdays, every single one, so we are always looking through a frugal party. One of our favorite ways to save is by making our own cake but we also like to vary our types of parties and party favors.

Saving On Birthday Cakes 101

Baking your own cake is the best way to save. $3.00 for cake and icing as opposed to $30+ for a purchased cake is great. My kids love to come up with a birthday theme and research possible cake designs on the web (supervised of course).

Sometimes we buy special cake toppers (mini toys) at the dollar store and sometimes we will clean some we already own. If you do not like to bake, you may consider picking up a plain cake from the bakery section and adding your own cake topper. 

Making a permanent ceramic cake topper at a pottery store like As U Wish is also a great way to save on cakes. The cake pictured below was a kit purchased for $2.67 @ Fry's Marketplace.

Limit the Large Parties

Although large parties can be a lot of fun they can also be expensive. We give each child a large party about once every three years. If it is not their party year we still make it a special day with a cake and presents. This year is not a big party year for our daughter so she is having one friend over for a sleep-over. We still have a pirate play theme to which we have set up some fun pirate play decorations in her room and planned a treasure hunt. We are having fish and chips for dinner and plan to watch "Pirates of the Caribbean" for entertainment. This is a good social lesson too; she is learning to politely explain the lack of invitation to her other friends if they should ask.

Saving on Favors and Invitations

Even when we go to a party location like Peter Piper, we make our own favors and invitations. I like to shop at Dollar Tree where I can pick up 30 favor bags for $1 and fill them with candy and small toys according to the theme for that year. Likewise invitations are 8 for $1 however we often make invitations ourselves. One year we had a pirate mermaid themed party and we made messages in a bottle as invitations. It can be great fun.

Learn to Set Limits

Although it may be hard it is wise to plan your party budget and tell your child he or she must only invite 10 friends or whatever your limit is. If you are afraid to enforce this rule remember that by doing so you are teaching your child good social skills for later in life. I instruct my child to keep the party on the down low as to not hurt anyone who was not invited. If someone does ask then they can say, "my mom said I could only invite so many people..."

Birthday parties are great for you child and with a little planning they can be both fun and inexpensive.

You may also like Saving at Disneyland.

How I became Considering frugal

Fueled by the growing list of pollution related allergies my family suffered from each day and inspired by my 97 year old grandmother who could recycle ANYTHING before recycling was cool, back in 2011, I decided (in the spirit of the Julie/Julia Project...) to embark on a journey to see just how much one family could do to change our planet. I did not consult any other parties before I launched this idea. Thankfully my husband, daughter and son are usually my biggest supporters. Here is the catch; as I am normally very thrifty (you can note from early blog posts), I was looking for ways that I could reduce our carbon footprint and make socially responsible purchases without increasing our spending. Mmmmmm. I did succeed in changing our habits a bit and finding ways to reduce our footprint. There were lots of fun epic fails alone the way too! But the biggest change we have made over the course of the last six years, was to move from the mega city of Phoenix to Wyoming where we are about to take an even bigger step and move out on a dirt road in the country where we can expand our hobby bees and more! You can read my full bio on my About Me page.

frugal advice

"...for your Father knows what you need before you ask." Matthew 6:8

Legal Disclaimer

While it is true that I am working on a PHD in Psychology and very smart and frugal, I am not a medical doctor, criminal, personal or accident lawyer. I do not sell insurance nor am I an accountant or mortgage advisor. While some of my posts may offer good ideas on home and business solutions, I am not personally responsible nor is Considering frugal for any advice, ideas, recipes or menu plans that you decide to use. This blog is intended to be helpful and fun. Any products you purchase from my Amazon store or any other retailer advertised on my blog must be returned to them. Any sponsors or advertisers are independent of this blog.