We recently had a birthday party for our oldest, Monkey, with family. We’re invited to a lot of kid parties these days now that he’s in school, so we’ve been to every bounce place and kid gym in the local area. A few times while out, I asked the costs for such a party in case we had wanted to go to place instead of have it at home. I’m not sure we spent this much on his first, second, or third birthday parties. With prices ranging from $200-500 for a party smaller than what we could fit at our house, minus any food costs, we chose to keep it simple with birthday parties at home for the foreseeable future.
This party was for 26 total, though 2 of them were under the age of 7 months! We fed around 17 adults and 7 children. For appetizers, we did chips and dip. For dinner, we made homemade pizzas. The kids were able to decorate/top their own pizzas before cooking.
And then Chris made amazing s’mores cupcakes for dessert.
Here’s the breakdown of what we spent:
|Items We Already Owned|
Chris makes a good pizza dough, so we were happy to make it ourselves. The cost wouldn’t have been too high if we had to order pizzas instead. Most parties we attend, the meal is always pizza.
Since I don’t currently ‘budget’ for birthday parties, but I do budget for gifts, I think I may add a line item in my miscellaneous savings budget for parties. We just lumped this under our food budget, as we didn’t need much this week in the way of food any how.
We made the favors ourselves. We bought melting chocolate (which was on sale!) in flavors like white mint, chocolate truffle, peanut butter, birthday cake, and blue vanilla.
For Monkey’s school party, we purchased box cake mix and marshmallow frosting. I used the app Ibotta to score $0.75 back in the process.
Use this link to get a free $10 for using the app: https://ibotta.com/r/koexrvp
Or referral code: koexrvp
It helps that I had given Chris cake decorating classes one year for his birthday, too!
And that’s how we handled our 4 year old’s birthday party. It’s old school, but weren’t those parties the best?! Family said it was also nice seeing him open his presents after dessert. We usually never see children open gifts anymore at parties, but Monkey always asks about it. I am not sure if it’s the ‘in’ thing to do, but I know I love to see the honest childhood reactions for the gifts I give!
How do you handle your child’s birthday party?
I can see the benefit of having it somewhere, as there is no cleanup after and you don’t have to figure out an activity. Though, we always seem to have a ton of things for the kids to play with that they never seem bored (and we have a playground down the street they go to if it’s nice out).