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February 09, 2012

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My daughter's 13th birthday party is this month. She has had sleepover parties the past couple of years, but this year we are paying for a party at the go cart track. It's $260 for 20 people, unlimited carts and mini golf and some game tokens. Snacks and drinks I will have to supply myself. I think it's kind of high, but probably about the average going rate in Houston for a kid's party at an entertainment business. I only have one child so she is kind of spoiled... I think I am going to try your $100 approach next year and see what happens.

FMF, I'm disappointed... I totally thought you would be starring on My Super Sweet 16 ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Super_Sweet_16 )!

;-)

I'd be interested in seeing what folks do for kids' first birthdays.

My son's first birthday is in mid-May and I want to keep it low-key, but I think our large family will want otherwise (he's the first grandchild on my side and the second on my husband's). Hopefully, I'll be able to keep the price low by having a potluck of favorite family dishes at our condo complex's common area, which includes a kitchenette, bathrooms, patio and pool area (we're in Southern California so the weather should be rather nice).

As far as frugal tips go, my co-worker told me to buy a sheet cake from Costco, then decorate it myself with party favors from Party City or the Dollar Store. This way, if you have a theme, you're not paying hand-over-fist for special decorations. We'll also reuse our baby shower decorations -- we didn't do a "baby shower" theme, just used a specific color palette (green and brown) -- and round it out with some balloons and a pinata filled with inexpensive candy.

Of course, other ideas are welcome!

I like your approach. With our first on the way, I don't know what we'll do for birthdays quite yet. We'll probably spend time as a family with the cake/ice cream/special dinner thing for the first few years, then later have slumber parties and such. It'll be so much fun, no matter what we do!

We let each kid have a bigger party about every 4 years where they go out or have a bunch of friends over. It's working out well so far. The rest of the time it's a party with close family friends, godparents etc. Then it doubles as a great excuse just to get together, so we all have dinner and the kids all go play. We have a cake and a few presents, but nothing big. Those are some of the best ones because grown-ups and kids all have fun, and the stress level is low for everybody.

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