My 9-year-old daughter recently attended a birthday party that included a limousine ride to The Ritz hotel for tea, followed by manicures and pedicures at a posh shop. I think most of us were first picked up in limos for our weddings -- not a child’s birthday party. Since when did birthday parties become such extravagant affairs?
In our now “more is better” culture, parents and kids have higher and higher expectations for birthday parties. As a result, parents are feeling the financial strain and stress and kids are overloaded and over-indulged.
So how do you create an inexpensive-yet-memorable birthday party? Keep it simple. Have the party at home and invite eight friends -- not 20. Plan a fun craft that can be used as the take home party favor, eliminating the over-stuffed throw-away goody bag. Play good old-fashioned games that kids will love -- an obstacle course or sack race is great for both boys and girls of all ages. For younger kids, you can’t go wrong with "Duck Duck Goose,” and for older kids, a dress-up relay race is always fun!
There are lots of great birthday party ideas sites online including Amazing Moms and Birthday Party Ideas. For the craft, check out Michaels craft store. They have a huge selection of materials. If you are low on time but still want a fun, creative birthday party craft, check out Birthday Parties Delivered. They offer kids crafts and birthday-party packages that contain everything you need.
Remember that the birthday party is for your children. Pick something that every child can participate in and keep it simple. This will allow you, as their parents, to enjoy the festivities, hold the video camera, and simply share in the excitement of your child’s celebration! They will grow up too fast, so relish in these exciting and developing years!