budget events

Money Saving Tips for Kids Parties

6:26 PM

A party for your child can either be a BIG headache, very expensive or both. Here are some tips from the event I had for my daughter on how to save some money and still create a beautiful party for your child.

First off, we had it at the house because besides our monthly mortgage there was no additional fee.
Secondly, we had a theme of a chinese cartoon Kai Lan mainly because chinese food is cheap and everyone loves it. Think taco bar for Dora the Explorer.
Next, I set up a dessert table and the buffet in the same room across from each other. It meant I didn't have to break one table down to set up the dessert or spend money on help. It was very easy. It also allowed me to create one central decorating spot so I didn't need to spend additional money on decor all over the house.
I did splurge on a magician for entertainment but it was worth occupying 15 children for 1/3 of the party.

 As much as I love a gorgeous designer cake I know it can cost a pretty penny. So if you don't want to spend a hefty price and are cupcaked challenged (my red velvet ones landed in the garbage!) do what I did; order a plain sheet cake and a cardboard centerpiece (this one was $6). Put skewers on the bottom of the centerpiece like I did and stick in cake. It will look and taste fabulous.

Lastly, we saved money and the environment by putting out pitchers of water and bottles of soda. We did put out juice boxes in order to save my furniture. I also had Kai-Lan-tinis for the adults; lychee juice and champagne…yummy!

chinese theme

Kai Lan Birthday Party

8:30 AM

This weekend my daughter turned 2 and the event planner in me decided to step it up on the home front. We chose a chinese theme for a cartoon "Ni Hao Kai Lan" because A. she loves that show, B. my daughter resembles the cartoon and C. chinese food is cheap! 

I decided to make a dessert table complete with a paper dragon. It looked wonderful and the children loved it.  Here are some pictures but stay tuned for tips on saving money at a children's party as well as a how to make candy sushi post! 
Sample of Kai Lan Invite from Tiny Prints

I couldn't resist getting her Chinese PJ's for the party. I got them in China Town but you can order them from the same store Pearl River Mart.
 The dessert table sign I made myself with plain paper and a paper cutter. Just cut each letter into a triangle and staple onto ribbon. I promise you this is easy. I used comic sans font in turquoise and red.

I used all platters and glassware from around the house. The apothecary jars (left side) are a great investment if you don't have them. For around $10 each you can get these at Home Goods and use them anywhere. They can hold sea glass, sand, ornaments…anything really. The mini chinese take out containers were great for the children to fill up with treats.
Treats included "rice paddies" aka rice crispy treats, "twirly whirly flowers" aka white chocolate flowers, "candy sushi" made of swedish fish, fruit roll-ups and rice crispy treats, candy and fortune cookies. 

Instead of a fancy cake which can be costly, I bought a Kai Lan centerpiece and attached skewers to the bottom to put on a plane sheet cake. 

Candy Sushi! Stay tuned for how-to make this fun and yummy dessert. Great to do with kids as well.

 Gift bags were jazzed up with printed labels. We got learning chop sticks to give to all the kids.

 Little chairs gave the kids places to sit and eat or watch the magic show.

What's a party without balloons?