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Minnie had a lovely, low-key birthday party. Everyone seemed to enjoy it, especially her! Here’s what we did:

magic wand with a star on top and a ribbon

Our magic wands looked roughly like this, but the star was foam and they were 3/$1 at Dollar Tree. Image by Caro’H on Flickr.com

  • place: the party room at our local pizza place
  • emailed evites, resisting the urge to invite everyone
  • decorations: 10 helium balloons
  • food: pizza and soda
  • dessert: 2 homemade birthday cakes

Activities for the Kids: Open-Ended

Our non-adult guests ranged in age from about 7 months to 5 years. Most of the bigger kids were boys who like to run around.

Firstly, I counted eating pizza as an activity. It takes time and energy and creativity!

Beyond that, we made a couple other open-ended activities available.

We invested $2 in regular latex balloons, inflated about 25 of them, and let the kids chase them around, play volleyball, etc. They loved it.

We also got cheap party hats and a few sheets of stickers. The kids and adults enjoyed playing with the stickers. The kids especially enjoyed being goofy with their hats, being rhinoceroses and such.

While there was some additional running around and climbing on tables that weren’t ours, those things were minimal.

Party Favors: Wands and Balloons

As we were winding down, I busted out $2 worth of ready-made cheap magic wands. I told the boys (who were experts at parties and knew what to expect: pizza, cake, and goody bags) that instead of goody bags, we had a magic wand for each of them.

They each picked a color and they were a hit (har har – the bigger kids enjoyed whacking each other with their wands). The kids all liked pretending to change J into various animals – birds were a favorite (with a party hat beak). Sometimes their spells rebounded and they turned into birds too – gotta watch out for that.

We also gave one of our helium balloon decorations to each baby/child.

That was it!

The kids had fun, I wasn’t agonizing over prep or clean-up, the adults could sort of relax, the bill was not high (8 pizzas and 20 fountain sodas), and my house didn’t get destroyed. Yay!

And my sweet little baby is two!