Both my kids have summer birthdays. This means that I’m usually safe for good weather, but the flip side is that throwing two parties in two months can be stressful.
I am not a Pinterest mom, nor do I honestly aspire to be. Instead, I am the mom that often thinks of ambitious ideas such as making a cake from a watermelon or having personalized goodie bags for each guest, but I never follow through.
I have learned something over the past five years of being a mom, though. My kids don’t even know what Pinterest is and they also have no idea if I spend $40 or $400 on their party. Will this change as they get older? Probably. But for us moms of little ones, let’s enjoy the simple pleasures while we can!
Here are a few tips I find handy that I hope you can add to your mommy toolbox!
- Goodie bags are not mandatory. In my opinion, they are a great way to spend money on unnecessary junk. Kids shouldn’t expect to receive gifts for coming to a birthday party.
- Tip- My daughter turned two yesterday and I wanted to bring something to her daycare class. For $3 total at the Dollar Store, I purchased 12 bottles of bubbles. I tied some ribbon on each and it was a cute something for her to bring in to celebrate her special day.
- Reuse! Things like Happy Birthday signs don’t have to be thrown out. I keep mine and re-use them every year.
- Mid-late Afternoon Party Time. Make your party 3-5 and you can easily get away with providing cake only.
- Ask a few guests to bring something. If you are providing food, ask your in-laws, parent, close friends to bring a side dish. Trust me, people love helping out especially when it’s around celebrating their favorite kid.
- Free venues. If you have summer babies like I do, you can utilize parks. Some have a $45 fee if you want a covered shelter. Others are first come first serve! Have a winter kid? If your house won’t accommodate, try using an indoor club house. We have some apartments near us that rent out their club house for a super reasonable fee even for non residents.
- Boxed cake is awesome. I am going to share a tip that I promise will have people asking for your recipe: Add a couple teaspoons of almond extract to canned frosting. It will add a flavor that people won’t think is from a can. For my daughters birthday this week, I made boxed cupcakes, and then topped with canned white icing I had mixed with the almond. I then added sprinkles and people thought I had made them from scratch. Genius!
- Don’t feel guilty for making it small (or non existent). You do not have to invite every kid from school or the neighborhood. And, on that token, think about even skipping a party if it’s too much. Little ones don’t expect it and it can actually be too overwhelming for some. A small celebration with your immediate family is just as special.
- Keep it simple and breathe. A year from now, it is unlikely if your child will remember all the gifts he received or even what flavor cake there was. He will remember how he felt on that day and the fun that he had. You don’t have to find $500 to rent out a museum if that’s not in your budget. Kids want people that they love to be there and to have a fun day. Relax and enjoy it!