With the new year coming up, I wanted to talk to you about birthday parties. I normally plan my kids parties the year before. The girls are used to that, because as with almost everything else we do, it’s just the way its always been. Since I need to stay within a budget, I need to have PLENTY of time to shop after season sales, clearance sales, and whatever other sales I can find. Not to mention have time to “MAKE” whatever will need to be made -whether for financial reasons (versus paying retail costs) or because its something we can’t easily find.
For my youngest daughter’s 5th birthday, two years ago, she just could not decide what she wanted the theme for her party to be. She wanted to have Strawberry Shortcake, Mickey Mouse, Hannah Montana, Barbie, and an array of other things. We normally set the theme and then I can shop items on sale that either relate to it or I can at least make work. (For example, when she had a Strawberry Shortcake party the year before that, we shopped after Christmas sales for red or green items we could use, then we got some more awesome deals after Valentines with all the pinks, reds, and green… not to mention cupcakes, heart, and other cute motives like that, and then we got some stuff one sale after Easter, again. trying to figure out ways to tie it to the
them we were working with. It turned out great, and totally on a budget!) Anyway, for her 5th birthday she was having a terrible time picking “A” theme… and then it just dawned on me… I asked her if she would like to have a “MY FAVORITE THINGS” birthday party and she LOVED the idea. It was almost a relief for her it seemed, the kid was HAPPY! And, to be honest, I thought it was the greatest thing ever because I automatically thought about how awesome it would be to be able to have SO many options to chose from!
We started things off by making it all VERY colorful, the girls likes colors! Then we started to gather stuff from her favorite cartoon characters and such. When they came in, the table at the entrance was set up with some goody boxes for each, filled with little things I had purchased on sale of course. There were also party hats for each child, and a can of silly string for each one as well (from the dollar store). For activities, we kept it simple with things SHE normally likes to do… like DRESS UP! And I made Tutus for each girl, and each got a set of
dress up gloves, a wand, and a hair band I dressed up with a rose for each (to match the tutu they were getting). Since there were going to be boys there, we got a stick horse (from the dollar store), a stick on mustache (on sale from the “Cinco de Mayo” section at a party store), and a dress up sheriff vest I had found on SUPER clearance, for each of them.
There were chips, chocolates, chocolate covered marshmallows, candy pops, and
other stuff like that. Instead of a cake, we went with cupcakes… I LOVE cupcakes! I topped them all with bright yellow buttercream and garnished them with either a balloon pick, or an edible chocolate tiara pick I made and finished them off with pretty glittery purple and pink sugar crystals.
As its customary at my place, the kids came and automatically took off to play with all the stuff.. and half way into the party the silly string came out. They ended up having the fun INSIDE, and I can tell you it was a pain to clean up… we kept finding more all over picture frames, over furniture, between the entertainment unit, just
EVERYWHERE, but it was SOOOO worth it!
This has been by far one of my favorite of our parties, and both girls remember it well. In fact, my oldest told me a few months ago when we were talking about planning for next year that she wants to have a “My Favorite Things” party for 2012!
SO excited, I can’t even tell you!
Anyway, I hope maybe this has given you some ideas for a future party, it works well with creativity, budget, and incorporates everything the kid is into at this particular time, which makes it an AWESOME way to chronicle to keep for later! We will always remember what she was into when she was 5… down to her favorite candies, munchies, food, etc. I LOVE IT! This DEFINITIVELY WORKS FOR US!