Did you have birthday parties as a child? We would have a big party every three years but family only parties every year. In retrospect a lot of work went into those big parties. I remember pinatas stuffed with goodness, fantastic food that never seemed to end, loot bags for kids and loads of games.
I was invited to one of those kid focused parties this year. The birthday boy’s family shares a lot of my struggles but he’s been to his fair share of parties this year and the verdict is that everyone has a theme. The theme is used to decide decor, games, food and the cake. So when he decided that he wanted his theme to be Super Mario his mum went online to get ideas.
I popped over one day to find her drawing faces on balloons and creating construction paper characters. It turns out that everything for the perfect Mario themed party is out there to be purchased but it could cost her up to $500 to throw the party of his dreams. $500 for 2 hours of fun.
Not only is she frugal but she’s creative – she scoured her pantry, his craft section and her closet for items to make a live-action Mario game. Anything not found in their home was purchased at the dollar store.
When I tried to help with ideas, I found myself overwhelmed with the DIY posts on pinterest that had great ideas but were still expensive and very time consuming. I opted to not share them but she didn’t give in to some of the cute but expensive ‘frugal’ ideas out there. There was no need for an excess of candy, themed tableware or hanging ornaments.
In the end the kids loved it and the adults were awed by her creativity.
Me? I did the cake.
In the end the birthday boy got his perfect party and his mum didn’t break the bank. Also like kids have for ages, once the planned games were done, they congregated and played with all the toys they could get their hands on.