How You Can Throw Your Babyโ€™s First Birthday Under $100!

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Our Mr. One-Derful on his official first birthday ๐Ÿฅณ๐Ÿฅฐ

The Force was strong with this little one on August 11, 2018, when we threw his very first birthday party with our friends. And then as of 9:26pm August 12, 2018, our little dinosaur officially turned a whole year old. 1๏ธโƒฃ๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽ‰

In an effort to make things less overwhelming for him, (which seemed to go well?) we decided to have two birthday parties for our son. One with our close friends–his nonbiological aunts and uncles–and one with our closest family–his biological aunts and uncles, as well as his cousin, grandparents and obviously us. ๐Ÿ‘ช

Some people go all out with their child’s first birthday. And honestly, I don’t blame them! It’s a big deal! You got your baby to survive a whole year! ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ™Œย That’s something to seriously celebrate!

Honestly, the first birthday party was as much for me as it was for my son. Despite how incompetent I’ve felt these past 15 months, my son seems to be thriving. ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™ย This may just be testament to his strong will, but I have to stop and think where did he get that from? ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜‚

That being said, we didn’t have a few thousand dollars to put down on a big hall and guest appearances by the actual Spiderman, nor did we feel like taking out a birthday party loan (yes, apparently that’s a thing). But we still wanted to make it special. ๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ’–

Since we had two birthday parties, we ended up spending closer to $150-75ish when it was all said and done (including pizza for guests), but for two parties, and considering how many people we had at our first one, I’ll still call that a win! ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜™


๐ŸฐHow We Cut Costs Like Birthday Cake:

๐ŸŽˆFor decorations, I scoured Party City online for their best deals for Star Wars themed decorations, hit up Oriental Trading for all things dinosaur, and of course visited the dollar tree to fill in the gaps on the cheap. ๐Ÿ’ณ๐Ÿ’ฐ

 

๐Ÿ•For food for guests, we ordered pizzas and asked guests to bring along some simple snacks. ๐Ÿ˜‹ย We also made cupcakes for our both parties respectively, as this ended up being much cheaper than buying birthday cakes. ๐Ÿง

 

๐ŸŽ‚Aside from the pizza, the only expensive part food-wise was Vinny’s smash cakes, banana cake made with almond flour with a greek yogurt and honey frosting (there’s my crunchy side ๐Ÿ˜‚โœŒ๐ŸŒฑ).

 

๐Ÿ“–I also made an attempt at a “Year Book” for our son for his friends and family to sign, marking all of his milestones and memories from his first year of life. I didn’t give myself enough time to properly work on it, but when he reads it after he graduates high school, all that matters is that he’ll see what his friends and family wrote to him all those years ago. ๐Ÿ’ญ๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ˜ญ

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๐ŸŽตI tried so hard…
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…and got so far๐ŸŽถ

But I know what you’re all really here for. ๐Ÿ˜‰ย So, without further ado, here are some tips on how to save on first birthdays:


๐ŸŽ€Got Any Leftovers?

If you have friends or family that have already had babies, ask them if they’ve hung onto any first birthday supplies, or just party supplies in general. You never know what you can repurpose until you look! ๐Ÿ‘€

๐Ÿ’กFacebook Marketplace and local Moms Groups might be a good resource for this, as well! ๐Ÿ‘

๐Ÿ’ต๐ŸŒณHit Up the Dollar Tree!

Dollar stores can be hit or miss, but a lot of times they have the basics like table cloths, paper cups, plates, etc. It can be tempting to get all of the themed partyware you see at the expensive party stores, but they’re not all necessary. ๐Ÿ™…ย For example, we ordered Star Wars Plates and Cups at Party City, but only half of what we would need. Then we got the rest with a matching color scheme at the dollar store.

๐Ÿ‘‘For another example, if your little girl were to have a (Sofia the) 1st Birthday party, you could pick up a Sofia table cloth, and then one to two (depending on the size of your guest list) sets of Sofia cups, plates, and maybe napkins, and then get the rest in purple or white. And voila! A party fit for a little Princess on a Pauper’s budget. ๐Ÿ‘ธ๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ‘›

Resisting the urge to splurge on themed decorations and instead opting for the color scheme of streamers, balloons, etc from the Dollar Tree will help save a few pennies, as well. ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽˆ

๐ŸกStay Close to Home.

People get the idea that they need to have their kids’ first birthdays at a big hall, and if that’s what your heart is set on, and you’ve been saving for it since before your baby was born, then go for it! But you’d be surprised what you can do with your own living space. ๐Ÿคฏ๐Ÿคฏ

If you don’t have much to work with, but have a friend or family member with more space, ask them ahead of time if they don’t mind you having the party there! You can bake them an extra set of cupcakes to thank them for their troubles.

๐Ÿ›๐ŸŽDon’t go all out for gifts.

This one is hard, more so for some than others. We Mamas want our kids to have the world, but the reality is they don’t need all of the latest toys. The truth is, they’ll play with them for a while but then forget all about them, or play with the dang box instead! ๐Ÿ“ฆ๐Ÿ˜ซ

I love sticking to the minimalist gift rule every birthday and Christmas for my little ones, because more than likely they’ll be getting a bunch of gifts from friends and family as well. ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿคทโ€โ™€๏ธ

๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ’“Again, I totally get that rush from seeing your kids light up when they get that popular toy. But trust me, they’ll be okay without the entire LOL Dolls or Ninjago set. They might even be better for it. ๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ’“


Vinny’s first birthday was bittersweet. ๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿ˜ญย A year really flew by, and the the years will start coming and they won’t stop coming and soon enough he’ll be 18…ย ๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ˜ตย I try not to think about it too much, despite how much I mutter under my breath that I can’t wait for him to go school when he’s driving me crazy. ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช๐Ÿคช

How many of you have the big Oh-One coming up? How many of you have already had it? What is/was your theme? Any other tips for readers? Leave them in the comments! ๐Ÿ’ฌ๐Ÿ˜™

๐Ÿ’–Thanks for reading, my gals! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜˜ย Next time I’ll get into how I worked through a sensitive pregnancy issue maybe some of you can relate to…

Less is More: What We Got Our Son For Christmas

((Another phone post! Gotta keep up momentum! ๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ˜˜))

Henlo all! Hope your Christmases (if you celebrate it) were filled with love, good health, and fun! Ours was busy, but magical!

It was my son’s first Christmas, and got spoOo0o0oOo0o0iled! All of his family and friends were so excited to shower him with lovely gifts; clothes, toys, books, all of it very much appreciated! We’ll definitely enjoy them together for as long as possible.

While the generosity of our loved ones does not go unnoticed, having a 600 square foot apartment doesn’t leave us with much to work with in terms of storage. It was hard enough to keep our dwelling clean as a childfree couple (neither my husband nor I are the most organized people ๐Ÿ˜…), but add a baby into that mix and our little home quickly becomes a wampa cave.

This and the fact that we want our kids to be as non-materialistic as possible, and rely more on creativity and logic to independently entertain themselves, we’ve decided to adopt the minimalism rule of gift-giving: Something they like, something they need, something to wear, something to read. This is what we based our first Christmas gifts on for my son, and he not even being 5 months old, it doesn’t make much difference to him what we got, but I felt getting into the habit now and having him grow up with it will help make it just a way of life as he gets older. I’m working on getting my family and friends in on the concept, as well!

Anyway, here’s what we got for our son as a visual example!

Something He Likes

So as I mentioned, my son is just shy of 5 months, so he doesn’t really have much that he definitively likes aside from formula and shininess, but we kept in mind what he might like as he gets older and is able to play more independently

We found this guy on Amazon–we had gotten an Amazon gift card for our Baby shower which we used for gifts this year (we’d already gotten all we needed for our little guy), and found a waiting room toy for relatively cheap. We feel he’ll enjoy all of the multiple functions of this toy, the bead dragging, shape-fitting, etc, as he gets old enough to play on his own.

Something He Needs

Our Little Vinny has already had his first cold (at least we suspect so), so we purchased him some cold supplies. We found a nice all-natural version of vapo-rub for babies to rub on his chest and feet, an all-natural saline spray for stuffy nose, and fever bugs to stick on his forehead to see if he’s got a fever and/or bug!

Something to Wear

I had purchased a few holiday articles of clothing for Vinny in November, and saved this sweater for Christmas Eve and Christmas as his Something to Wear. The little reinfawn looked so cute in his ugly sweater ๐Ÿ˜ ๐ŸฆŒ

Something to Read

This book popped out at me while Amazon shopping, and I was instantly in love! It’s a simple book that helps encourage using your imagination by listing several animals and explaining why they, like Transformers, are “more than meets the eye.”So cute! And that’s our Baby’s first minimalist Christmas gift! What did your little ones get this year? Thinking of taking up minimalism? I’m addicted to minimalism on Pinterest, myself! Best wishes for the New Year! Tune in next time for the final installment of my first Pregnancy Saga: the Third Trimester!