At my sons last birthday I thought I would lose my mind. He was turning 4 and way more demanding than I remember being at 4! Like most parents I live on a budget, and a not so big one at that. I found a few tricks to make my life a little easier, and cheaper, when it came to his party.
My son was determined to have a Spongebob Square Pants themed birthday party. I went to the store and had sticker shock. How can anyone want 6 dollars for napkins. It is robbery. I opted out of the spongebob and just went with the colors. Blue and yellow worked out well without going over budget. It still looked just as nice. Kids don’t usually care. They are just going to be using them for cake.
As far as the cake went, there is noway I could get it professionally made. They want big bucks for a small cake, and I needed a big one. I decided to make my own cupcakes. A box of cake mix is only around a dollar. I found cute krabby patty gummies and put them on top with blue and yellow icing. They looked professional as far as I was concerned. The kids ate them so fast it wouldn’t matter if they were 50 cents or 50 dollars.
You always want your kids birthday to be fun. I looked into having a clown and other such entertainment. I decided upon a bouncy castle. It was only 100 dollars for the day, and the crew came out, set it up, and took it down. Most other entertainment was well over that , and I would have had to host games as well. Which meant prizes and more money. They bouncy castle kept them busy all day long, and by the end, my son fell down with exhaustion leading me to relaxation in the evening. It’s a great way to work the sugar out of them.
Try making the party after lunch but before dinner. This way you will only have to serve snacks and not a whole meal. The year before we decided to have cheese burgers and hot dogs. The food alone cost us hundreds of dollars. This year we served chips and fruit. That bill was something I could afford, and left a little wiggle room for other things.
The birthday party was a huge success, my 4 year old was extremely happy, and I spent less than 200 dollars. Not that my sons birthday isn’t worth everything I have, but when it doesn’t break the budget it helps me breathe a little easier.