Sometimes I have thought about what to open that night before 8am...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A Mother Earth Birthday Party - for under $100!

Before I had children I was a party planner. Sometimes I miss the creativity and excitement that goes along with throwing a good party. This means that when an opportunity comes along to plan a party, I throw myself into it heart and soul.

Karen Ray wanted an Earth Friendly theme for her birthday party this year...

We cut an old cardboard box we had lying around from Christmas into postcard size pieces.
We were not precise as we wanted them to look recycled.

Then we printed a picture of a recycle symbol, cut it out and used it as a stencil.
After I traced them onto the cardboard Karen Ray painted them.

I hand wrote the information on the back.
Our next decision was to go Letterboxing. Letterboxing is a great family activity. It is like a treasure hunt. The gist is this: You follow a set of clues that will lead you to your letterbox. It is like a hike with a prize at the end! In the letterbox you will find a notebook and a stamp. You write your name and put your thumb print in the book, and you use their stamp to leave a mark in the book you bring with you.

I made letterboxing journals for the girls. They were made out of reversible scrapbook paper. The paper sheets were 2 for $1 and I needed 2 sheets. The filler pages were white computer paper I already had in the house. The pens were in 5 packs and they were $1 per package. 
We made our own letterbox in honor of Karen Ray's birthday, but you don't  need to. There are so many great letterboxes available in towns all over the world! Follow this link to check it out.
 When we returned to the house, the girls painted frames.

We used moss and butterfly decorations to give them a nature theme. The frames were $1 each. The decorations were $8 total. I already had the paint and paint brushes in the house.
We kept them at our house to dry. That gave me time to print a picture of the girls from the party and put it inside. It also gave Karen Ray time to write her thank you notes and tape them to the back!
 Karen Ray requested the Earth for her cake. Fortunately for her, Tim is her daddy!
The Earth was made out of 2 ball shaped pans. You can pick them up at Michael's.  Tim connected the two halves with dowels and a circle of cardboard in the middle. The base is an upside down bowl. The divet in the bottom was the perfect size for the Earth.
Finally, the favors, I should tell you that I am not a fan of goody bags. In fact, you could say goody bags make me crazy. It is filled with candy and toys that will either end up in my trashcan when my kids aren't looking, or stepped on in the middle of the night because I didn't manage to throw them out in time. I try to come up with a fun party favor instead.
The favors:

Water bottles purchased at Marshall's for $3.99 each. I bought a couple of boxes of Propel packets and divided them amongst the bottles. Total cost per favor: $4.57, which is under the average cost of $5 for a goody bag!

All right, let's break it down.

Invitations:                 $ 0
Letterboxing journals: $ 3
Frames:                     $16
Cake:                        $22 (this includes the pan, cake mixes, frosting, etc)
Snacks/Paper goods: $17
Favors:                      $37
Total Party Cost:     $95

Showing your daughter that she lights your world on fire?


  1. What a nice party with some really great ideas -- that cake is amazing!

  2. Wow, such a creative birthday party; I love the fact that your daughter requested an Earth Friendly Themed Party, good for her!