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wdyt of cheap parties


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#51 Feral Grey Mare

Posted 29 August 2012 - 08:51 AM

QUOTE (Sal78 @ 29/08/2012, 01:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
ds was invited to a b'day party recently which was a bit unusual, in a good/bad way.

He invited the whole class and it was held at their house.The house is nice with a nice sized yard. But it was weird. There was not even 1 single game, no structure at all and the all the kids basically ran around crazy doing whatever they wanted.

She put out a bowl of potato chips, some fair bread and sausage rolls. 2 Jugs of cordial and that was it. Home made chocolate slab cake with chocolate icing in a rectangle and cut very small pieces.

A part of me think it's great, cheap and stress free but the other part of me thinks very cheeky and cheap as it's a private school and parents spend around $30 to $50 per present (just from experience).

I honestly could not see the party costing more than $50.

Nothing was really offered to the parents. I didn't drink or eat anything. We bought a $40 lego present. It's very different to any party I have been to. I know some mums will think if it's going ti be so cheap then why invite the whole class.  

Such a massive contrast to my ds1's party coming up this Sat. DH has done so much work, gone all out. I have catering for kids and adults, I'm baking a themed cake, the party favours is probably costing about $10 per child alone! but ds is only allowed to invite 10 friends. dh even made food labels i.e Yoda's Soda and Jedi Juice with labels covering each pack of juice.

Maybe I should have done what she did! honestly, for that party, she wouldn't have to plan anything, just get the food ready 20mins before the party and that's it! no games and the kids still had fun.


Simple solution: calculate cost of the party, factoring in all the time you have spent on it, divide total by number of invitees and include this figure on the invitations as a reccomended gift amount. Maybe David Jones could run a gift register for you?

#52 bakesgirls

Posted 29 August 2012 - 08:51 AM

The party was for the kids, not for you. They had fun, which is all that matters. Get over yourself. You are a snob. Private school doesn't mean they have money to throw around on crap like you claim you do.

What a sad life you must lead if a kids party is what you judge people on.

ETA- who cares if you weren't catered for. You are an adult, surely you can go a few hours without feeding your face. If you're thirsty ask for a drink of water.

Edited by bakesgirls, 29 August 2012 - 08:53 AM.


#53 poss71

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:04 AM

I do cheap parties. Park, streamers in a tree, balloons (popping everywhere), sandwiches, fairy bread, fruit platters, chips, lolly bags. Sometimes meatballs, party pies, sausage rolls. We don't even do hot food all the time, shock horror.

This year, DD2 turned 3, in late Feb. She was the first birthday party holder at her 3 yo kinder. I did a cheap party.

The kids had heaps of fun, but I noted some of the parents seemed to be a bit "huh?", although they relaxed after a short time.

What horrified me were The Presents. Yes, it requires title case. $40 seemed to be the average price - for a 3 yo their kids had only known since the start of term. One present, while fabulous (and she still plays with it daily) was the sort of thing *I* would buy for my own child for Christmas (the big present, IYKWIM), not someone else's kid for a birthday.

My sister (older kids) suggested it was because it was the first party a lot of oldest child attendees had been invited to and they were still to work out that $40 times 30 parties over the year is a lot of cash to spend on small children - that's $1,200, not including your own child's party. Sadly, it made me hesitate in getting close to those parents, because it seemed their values differed greatly from my own.

OP, if it makes you feel a bit better, I did fork out on an equivalently priced extravagant gift for the parties we were invited to in return. So, perhaps you can rely on your fellow mum to do the same, even if she is a cheap party holder laughing2.gif

Edited by poss71, 29 August 2012 - 09:05 AM.


#54 MAGS24

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:13 AM

I think it depends on the age of the kids. My four year old DS has been to three bday parties this year. They were themed and structured parties with games etc and the kids just seemed to young to enjoy the games that were organised.

I like the sound of a party where the kids can just play and have fun without having to bother about party games. And just a table of party food. But if I was to do a party like that, I would let the parents know in advance that it would be a casual party so that they had the choise to buy cheaper presents etc. I would love to just give my son a "party" where kids didn't need to bring presents but just came over to play for awhile and have a good time. My son would love that more than the gifts.

Kids parties shouldn't have to cater to the parents. It isn't an event where the whole family of all the kids are invited either. It is just for the child that is invited and maybe one parent per child who is only there by choice or to supervise their child, not by invite.

A lot of people go too overboard with young kids parties these days.

#55 OneMore?

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:29 AM

This thread is funny. Return on present investment - really !! My goodness...also I'm not sure you mentioned enough times how cheap the party was.

I feel sorry for you OP, why can't you go to a party and just enjoy yourself instead of critiquing the party as to it's cheapness factor....

We have friends that have over the top parties, and friends that have a cake (that's it) in the park after school - birthdays are about celebrating another year of life and parties come in all different shapes and sizes. Maybe in future you could ask the host more questions and if it isn't up to your standard - just don't go.

ETA - at age 7 I would be thinking that not many (if any) parents were going to stay around.

Edited by OneMore?, 29 August 2012 - 09:31 AM.


#56 kpingitquiet

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:38 AM

Uhm...sounds fine to me. It's a kids' party, not brunch with the Queen. I can't believe people are spending more than $20 on presents for some random kid in the class. I'm also not sure most 7yos GAF about structure and games. In my experience (teaching, babysitting, being) they tend to be quite content with your standard Lord of the Flies type mania biggrin.gif

#57 Ianthe

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:40 AM

You don't really care what people think, you just wanted to boast about your kid's OARSUM party.

#58 Mamabug

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:46 AM

Er...actually, that is what a 'normal' party is like in our neck of the woods.

You know, the sort where the birthday child and the guests have a good time...not the sort where the host parent's social worth depends on the financial outlay? Or maybe you don't know....

#59 261071v

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:49 AM

I don't get it. You'll never know what their circumstances are or what they value.

This year we held a themed party at home for my 4 yo as he has simply had a few friends over for the previous years. It was exhausting as we both work FT.  

Six weeks later we held a party for my 6 yo and it was much simpler- a couple of ball games, some jelly/fruit/fairy bread/icy poles and cheezels- and the kids did enjoy it.

If $30-$40 a pressie is the deal you want to keep up with, that's your choice. For us, that would be $900-$1200 a year.

#60 BadCat

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:50 AM

Best party we ever had was one where we set up a small pool full of slime and pretty much ended up just letting the boys run around throwing it at each other in the pouring rain.

Return on investment?

Cost: about $100 for food, slime and wading pool
Return:  several hours of fun that some of the participants still talk about 5 years later.

And not one parent complained when they picked up their soaking wet, slimy child at the end.  Was that because they felt they got their money's worth on the present?  Nah, I suspect it was because the kids were grinning from ear to ear.

But then, you know, we're PUBLIC school people.  You'd expect low standards from us.

Edited by BadCat, 29 August 2012 - 09:53 AM.


#61 Ianthe

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:54 AM

You're all about the slime BadCat

This wouldn't work for the OP, the kid's designer outfit would be ruined!

#62 Julie3Girls

Posted 29 August 2012 - 09:54 AM

QUOTE
There was not even 1 single game, no structure at all and the all the kids basically ran around crazy doing whatever they wanted.

I've had parties for my girls where I have had games planned, but ended up not doing them, simply because the kids were far too happy simply running around in the yard. At my daughter's 5th birthday, the kids found the barbie stuff I'd packed away and spent the whole time simply playing barbies. Really hope the parents didn't take your attitude.

She put out a bowl of potato chips, some fair bread and sausage rolls. 2 Jugs of cordial and that was it. Home made chocolate slab cake with chocolate icing in a rectangle and cut very small pieces.
Again, from past experience, I've seen parties with soooooo much food out, and it doesn't get eaten. Kids can be lousy with cake - I've learnt to cut the pieces small, because the amount of plates you pick up later that are still full of cake with just the icing licked off, it's wasteful. But I'm always open for the kids to have a second piece of cake if they want. Less wastage.

QUOTE
A part of me think it's great, cheap and stress free but the other part of me thinks very cheeky and cheap as it's a private school and parents spend around $30 to $50 per present (just from experience).

Glad my kids don't go to private school, because there is no way I'd be spending $50 on a present for a casual school friend, particularly for the "whole class" parties where they aren't close friends. The amount you spend on a gift is completely up to you, and I'd hate people to turn up with a $50 gift for my child. I always stress to the parents to just get something little.

QUOTE
Nothing was really offered to the parents. I didn't drink or eat anything. We bought a $40 lego present. It's very different to any party I have been to. I know some mums will think if it's going ti be so cheap then why invite the whole class.

At age 7, I wouldn't have been expecting the parents to stay! So I probably wouldn't have catered for parents either! My DD3's party is this weekend (turning 6), and since it's FYOS, I do put out a simple plate of bikkies and dip, and have some bottles of soft drink, and coffee/tea for the parents. No idea how many will stay - I know a couple will as they are my friends, but I'm expecting quite a few to drop and run. Same way the majority of parents did for my DD1 and DD2 FYOS party.


QUOTE
Such a massive contrast to my ds1's party coming up this Sat. DH has done so much work, gone all out. I have catering for kids and adults, I'm baking a themed cake, the party favours is probably costing about $10 per child alone! but ds is only allowed to invite 10 friends. dh even made food labels i.e Yoda's Soda and Jedi Juice with labels covering each pack of juice.

You and your DH obviously enjoy planning parties. Some people simply don't, and having a party is something they do simply for their child. And if the kids all had fun then they have done their job original.gif
I do get a kick out of my girls parties, so while our parties are simple and at home, and pretty low cost, I do put in the effort for them.  But the girls have been to other parties, the "here's a park, go and run around" and the kids love it. And I think the parents are smart - the mum doesn't like planning parties, she went simple, made it easy and less stressful on her, and still loads of fun and excitement for her daughter.


QUOTE
I HATE parties where only half the class are invited. It's so mean and exclusive. If we can't afford to have a party for 20+ kids when my little girl reaches kinder age + then we just won't have a party- maybe just 1-2 friends over for lunch/dinner and a play.

But what if your child HATES parties that for 20+ kids?  
Or what if your child doesn't like the kids in her class?
Or what if your child has friends spread over different classes, are you going to invite all 3 class (60 kids)?

My DD2 had a party last year for her 8th birthday. She invited 8 girls. At the end of it, she said she doesn't want a party that big anymore, that she just wants 4 friends next time.

Different kids have different likes/wants/needs. Just because my child doesn't want a party with 20+ kids doesn't mean she should never get a party.

#63 BadCat

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:01 AM

QUOTE (Ianthe @ 29/08/2012, 09:54 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
You're all about the slime BadCat

This wouldn't work for the OP, the kid's designer outfit would be ruined!


Oh yeah, we like to wallow in the muck here.  Outfits be damned.

#64 261071v

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:03 AM

BadCat- best party I ever went to as a kid involved a water bomb fight.  Learnt the hard way this year that it's not fun filling 200 water balloons at 2am in the morning- will have to tee up the kids to do it themselves next year.

#65 lamarque

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:09 AM

She sounds like a kids party veteran to me.  It took me a few goes to work out you don't need a Donna Hay Kids' inspired table of food and to just let the kids have free play.

#66 Sockergris

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:09 AM

OP, you're awesome and your party is going to be SOOOO much better than that other crappy party.

Is that what you wanted to hear?



#67 LucidDream

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:09 AM

I think having a low-key party shows enormous restraint, and had I been there I would most likely be taking note of everything they did and trying to replicate it!  I tend to go too far in the other direction and waste money on things that aren't important.  

Most of the parties we go to aren't at people's own house, so I would have enjoyed that.  In terms of making an effort, cleaning up your house before and afterwards would have been quite enough work in itself.  

I also love people who invite everyone in the class, such a generous thing to do.  Not to mention the fact that they opened up their home to a number of people they would not have known.  

All in all, they are the real deal.  Quick OP, start cultivating!

Edited by LucidDream, 29 August 2012 - 10:13 AM.


#68 Princess.cranky.pants

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:13 AM

QUOTE
but presents from 20+ kids for a $50 investment is cheeky/clever. If I had known I probably would have budgeted $20 for present...I don't usually budget as I just buy what the child likes but if I had known I would have in this case.


You have to be kidding! The amount you spend on a present depends on how much was spent on the party? Wow that is really bad. That is not the kind of attitude I would want to be passing on to my kids. And to suggest that the parents were clever because they didn't spend much money and got heaps of presents.. who thinks like this!

Maybe the parents didn't have time to put on a huge OTT party. And they might have just wanted to have their child's class mates over without all the fuss of a huge party. There is nothing wrong with that.

I am shocked at 80 people for a first birthday! Our parties are simple but always lots of fun. My 7 year olds had a party at the Bike park this year. Kids brought their bikes/scooters. Food was what DD wanted- hot dogs/fairy bread watermelon/cup cakes/dip/pop corn, cordial. And a home made birthday cake. Pass the parcel was the only game. The rest of the time the kids rode bikes, ran around and climbed trees. Several kids said it was the best party they had ever been too. Many of the parents said what a good idea for a party and how much fun the kids had. It was easy and lots of fun, we will be doing it again.

QUOTE
Glad my kids don't go to private school, because there is no way I'd be spending $50 on a present for a casual school friend, particularly for the "whole class" parties where they aren't close friends. The amount you spend on a gift is completely up to you, and I'd hate people to turn up with a $50 gift for my child. I always stress to the parents to just get something little.


$50 presents is not the norm at DD's private school. Parents spend around $20 or even less. More fool the OP if she thinks she has to spend $40-$50. But she properly wouldn't on DD because our parties are not fancy enough! lol

QUOTE
I HATE parties where only half the class are invited. It's so mean and exclusive. If we can't afford to have a party for 20+ kids when my little girl reaches kinder age + then we just won't have a party- maybe just 1-2 friends over for lunch/dinner and a play.


We only invited the girls to DD's 7 birthday. And it wasn't done to be mean. We had other kids to invite outside of school and DD is not friends with most of the boys anyway. Sometimes it's not possible to invite the whole class. I am not a fan of having the whole class myself and the numbers we had were manageable without being OTT.

Edited by Princess.cranky.pants, 29 August 2012 - 10:18 AM.


#69 wallofdodo

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:13 AM

I think you need to step away from the mummy blogs with all the pictures of the parent perfect children parties.

#70 Sweet like a lemon

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:14 AM

QUOTE (Sal78 @ 29/08/2012, 01:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
A part of me think it's great, cheap and stress free but the other part of me thinks very cheeky and cheap as it's a private school and parents spend around $30 to $50 per present (just from experience).


Got to this point and then I was sucked into brain void so large it threatened to engulf my entire universe.


#71 Chelli

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:17 AM

Hi,
Just a reminder that personal attacks and going through post histories to bring up other threads is against forum rules. Posts that have done this have been removed.

Regards
Chelli


#72 jennywin

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:18 AM

I like the old school parties. Parents trying to outdo each other sucks.

However maybe whenthe host saw adults were there, and staying there, she could have pulled together a mezze platter or put some extra chips and a dip out? Made coffee's? Basic hosting skills, unless she was busy or not feeling the best, tired, etc. To stay there without food or drink being offered, I would start to become annoyed, especially if I knew she was a tight wad.

#73 Feral Grey Mare

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:26 AM

QUOTE (261071v @ 29/08/2012, 10:03 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
BadCat- best party I ever went to as a kid involved a water bomb fight.  Learnt the hard way this year that it's not fun filling 200 water balloons at 2am in the morning- will have to tee up the kids to do it themselves next year.



We had a water pistol party for our son's 6th. Six kids ,a dozen water pistols from the $2 shop and a couple of buckets of water. Cheezels, watermelon, sausage rolls and a mum-made cake. They still talk about it 7 years later.

#74 mombasa

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:28 AM

Sounds like a great party to me, my daughter goes to a Private School and I certainly don't buy or expect in return a $50 gift, nor would I or any of the other mums from school I know expect a spread fit for the Queen.

Sending kids to a Private School and putting on extravagant birthday parties doesn't mean you care more or have put in more effort!

#75 Walkers

Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:28 AM

QUOTE (Sal78 @ 29/08/2012, 01:26 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
but presents from 20+ kids for a $50 investment is cheeky/clever. If I had known I probably would have budgeted $20 for present...I don't usually budget as I just buy what the child likes but if I had known I would have in this case.

This speaks volumes about your character  original.gif




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