Birthday parties are all about creating memories for our children that they’ll remember forever. These gatherings also have the potential to become very expensive projects that zap energy and empty pocketbooks.
1. Start with The Guest List
Begin any birthday party planning by drafting a guest list. Then, edit your list. Remember that most of the expenses you will incur are directly related to the number of invitees.
2. Location, Location, Location
Picking a location is the next step. The obvious answer is to host the party in your home (a sleepover or tea party are great ideas). But also research the cost of all-in-one packages offered by local bowling alleys, children's museums or your local YMCA. It may turn out to be that this is cheaper per child than other option.
3. Make-Your-Own Party Invitations
Making your own party invitations and thank you notes can be as simple as coloring printable birthday invitations. Or turn the process into a great craft project for the birthday girl or boy, giving him/her a sense of ownership in the party.
4. Store-bought or Homemade?
In addition to the deals you’ll find at the store, you can also save money by making foods yourself. If the idea of baking your own cake is too daunting, consider cupcakes instead, and add in the chance to let each child decorate their own cupcake with colorful sprinkles during the party.
5. Playing The Game
Entertaining a group of children is not as much of a challenge as you may think. Keep it simple. Some easy and time-tested ideas include: Pin the party hat on the birthday boy/girl, throwing a scavenger hunt or playing a game of musical chairs.
6. Savvy Goodie Bag
Spend less on "goodie bags" by shopping at your local dollar store for treats and fillers. There, you'll find small puzzles and containers of bubble makers to include as toys. Also include single-serve bags of Cheez-It crackers or individually wrapped Rice Krispies Treats Squares.
Remember, don't let the high costs of children's birthday parties spoil all the fun. Make the most of your birthday budget and create the memories you and your child will carry for a lifetime.