The birthday budget: By letting her kids plan their own parties, this mom helps them learn the value of a dollar, by Pauline Childs:
[Emma] really wanted a store-bought Barbie cake (with a real doll in the middle!). It would cost $40 and serve just eight people. I tried to explain how extravagant this was when you really thought about it, especially since we'd need to buy another cake to have enough for everyone. She looked at me and said, "But it's my birthday. How come I don't get to decide what to spend money on?"
She had a point. Suddenly, an idea occurred to me: why not just set a party budget and let the birthday boy or girl decide how to use it?
Thanks to Lisa Kothari of Peppers and Pollywogs for the link.
So far, we've not had many issues with keeping Lucia's birthday parties small and simple. She's certainly had ideas for larger parties after attending other people's more elaborate shin-digs, but for the most part, has been fine with our simple affairs.
I haven't had a birthday party gig in quite awhile. While that's not great for my business, I do hope that it means families are discovering creative ways to celebrate birthdays that are both enjoyable and inexpensive.