Updated: Apr 28, 2019
I can't believe my daughter just turned 8!!! Thankfully her birthday party turned out to be a blast considering the lack of planning that went into it. The last 3 weeks have included, painting our new house, moving, my parents coming for a visit, Easter dinner with my extended family, my daughter's family birthday, my son's family birthday, my daughter`s birthday party, my son`s birthday party, extensive job interviews, and a full time course starting. Due to all the hoopla going on in my life I didn't plan the birthday party, but it still came together beautifully.
Four little 8 year old girls arrived right on time, making the head count 5. They were so excited and started chasing my son around the house, so I sent them outside to run around the perimeter of the house as many times as they could. While they did this I blew up balloons with helium, cut up fruit and melted Nutella in the chocolate fountain. They loved this idea!!! Everything got covered in Nutella..... which was a huge issue because one guest was arriving later -- she has a peanut allergy!!! So I had to clean everything up with extra soap, so after they cleaned themselves up the girls went upstairs to play.
After I finished cleaning up I collected all the kid`s craft stuff I could find in the boxes of unopened toys. I set up a craft area in the dining room and all 6 girls came in to make 3 crafts, including their goody bags, a necklace, and a card. As they worked on these projects I got my husband on the bar b que to make hot dogs. Little girls make short time of eating!!! So while I cleaned up, yet again, I sent them to play upstairs and figured out what to do next.
As soon as I was done I grabbed the Hullabalo game for them to play. This game has been a party favorite since her 4th birthday, a life saver for me as it gives me time to take a breath and figure out what to do next. Time for Cake!!!! I used to make cakes, buy cakes and all the kids did was eat the icing and there was always leftover cake on their plates to be thrown out. Until, I discovered that if I made a jello cake and bought a Dairy Queen ice cream cake there would be no leftovers on the plates - the kids lick their plates clean.
Earlier that day, I skipped out of class early and went shopping for the food because I was picking up my friend's kids from the school until she could get home from work. After she picked them up my daughter and I bolted for Dairy Queen to pick out an ice cream cake. She had to pick it herself, if you knew my daughter you'd know that she has to have what she wants and no substitute will suffice.
So after cake was served and devoured I found the CD case and the CD player -- Time for dancing to Hannah Montana. I had a couple small clipboards and the girls took turns judging each dance. This gave me time to clean up and get their goody bags ready.
I don't like to give out goody bags filled with candy and useless little token toys, so I buy toys, dolls, or games that are on clearance at WalMart. For $5.00 I can put together a fantastic goody bag!!!! Each bag contained one bag of Eggies, a fruit roll up, their crafts, a helium filled balloon and a Hannah Montana board game.
Three girls were picked up that evening, two were staying for a sleepover. I let them continue dancing and playing while I tidied up then it was time to get ready for bed. I carried up our smaller TV and DVD player with a handful of DVDs I could find in the boxes located in the garage waiting to be unpacked. I got them settled in my daughter's bedroom watching Daddy Daycare and then I went to bed.
I would have slept like a rock except my husband kept waking me up to tell me the girls were still awake and I needed to check on them. You should know my sweet husband was downstairs watching a movie with my son while I was conked out upstairs. I think it was just before midnight when the girls finally fell asleep and they didn't wake up until morning..... which was my son`s birthday and I had to start the whole process all over again!!!!!
This post was from 2010.
I used to serve the traditional birthday cake at kids birthday parties and end up throwing out lots of half eaten pieces. At my daughter's 3rd birthday and my son's 6th birthday party I learned a valuable lesson about birthday cake -- if its made out of ice cream or jello there will be no birthday cake left on the plate.
A jello birthday cake is really easy to make and very good.
1 - large Jello pkg. any flavor
2 - pkg KNOX unflavored Gelatin
Make Jello as directed and add the 2 KNOX unflavored Gelatin pkg. dissolve in hot water with the Jello and then add the cold water.
Fill cake pan with the liquid and set in the fridge until hard.
Run hot water into sink (with stopper) and dip the cake pan in for a few seconds. Turn upside down onto a plate and put into the fridge until time to serve. Just before its time to serve decorate with icing.
Cut with a knife -- Can be eaten with fingers or fork.
Serve with a DQ ice cream birthday cake.
Christmas isn't the most expensive time of the year for our family. In our family the most expensive time of the year is April, or better known as Birthday Season.
My kids were born 8 days apart in the first week of April, add in Easter and I need to get a loan to fund the whole affair. I try not to do a big blow out, I burned myself out on those after the 1st year I had 2 parties to plan instead of one.
Even the smallest birthday parties can cost a fortune and where I live everyone continually tries to outdo the other person with a bigger and better party. I played the game when I had one child, but with two parties within a week of each other I just can't compete anymore.
So why don't I just have one big blow out you ask? My brother and I are 6 days apart and my mom would have only one big blow out and I always remember feeling cheated because I had to share my birthday! Yes I was a selfish little brat and this may have been the start of the huge wedge that is between my brother and I. That and our competitive natures.
So here are my past expensive ideas that I probably won't do again:
1. A birthday cake for $45.00 plus tax for a 4 year old
2. Renting adventure zone for two full parties for over $100.00 a pop.
3. Having 16 kids to one birthday party
I'm sure I'll be adding to this list when I have more time to think about it. These are the top three that stick out.
The year I bought the $45.00 cake for my son was the same year my daughter turned 1 eight days earlier. I also bought a cake for a party at Grandma's house, a cake for his actual birthday with family, a cake for my daughters actual birthday and the $45.00 cake for his kids birthday party. I know I spend well over $100.00 on cake alone that year.
Jello Birthday Cake
Since this is going to be the start of birthday season I will be writing more on birthday party planning and ideas. Hopefully I can find some cost saving ideas for everyone.
Cake is made out of Finger Jello - Use Knox Gelatin to increase the Gelatin and the stability. Make layers to increase interest. Use a casserole dish and soak in hot water for a few minutes once its set. Decorate with icing and decorative gel. Add candles and start to sing.
In the past I used to throw out most of the cake after the kids had eaten the icing, now I make a jello cake and buy an icecream cake and have very little to throw out because the kids eat it all!