Happy Monday and happy first day of spring, y’all!
So, chapter 2 was supposed to be posted last week, but, yeah. There was something a bit more important that I was doing: preparing for the firstborn’s 5th birthday party! Yes, this is mom life. LOL! This kid has had a birthday party every year of her life and I am tired. I decided that this will be her last big party until she turns 10.
Well, if it’s going to be the last party for a couple of years, we might as well go all out. Right?
The Kid is all about Shopkins. Now, I have no idea what these Shopkins do or what their purpose is, but the child adores them. When she said she wanted a Shopkins party, I said, “why not?”
I don’t have a money tree in the backyard, so I had to be aware of my budget. That being said, I am never having another major birthday party in my own house (because that is MADNESS), so I had to find a space that could hold all of our friends and family and still be reasonable. Our town rents out pavilions and heritage buildings for use. There is one just a couple of blocks away from our house and I was able to snag it—a couple of weeks after The Kid’s birthday—but whatever, that gave me extra time to plan and prepare.
Partying like a rockstar…on a budget
Like I said before, there is no money tree in my backyard. I am convinced, however, big children’s birthday parties are costly. Yes, yes, there are parents who manage to do everything for $50, but for the last five years, I’ve done parties on a budget and the least I’ve spent is $300. Whether it’s at home or at a play place, it’s expensive. Why? The Kid is born in the winter. Late winter, but she’s born in the winter, so there are no fun outdoor parties at the park or just a backyard barbecue with kids running amok.
Anyhow, there are ways to cut costs and still have fun.
How, do you ask? Pinterest! Pinterest is my best friend for ideas. I logged in and typed ‘Shopkins party’ into the search bar. Goodness! The number of ideas that popped up. What I loved was the Poppy Corn popcorn boxes.
This was easy-peasy. I had the faces printed and bought the popcorn boxes from Dollarama – $1.25 for eight boxes. Cut them and glued them and we were good to go. I was going to just buy microwave popcorn from the grocery store, but, c’mon. In a room full of hungry, crazy kids, who was going to have time to pop and monitor the microwave so we didn’t end up with burnt popcorn? I just sent Hubby to Kernels to buy a large bag of butter salt popcorn and a large bag of caramel popcorn. And guess what? Buy two, get one free!
I’ve seen a lot of people with these huge Polaroid photo frames and I thought it would be a great idea. I checked out the prices and, honestly, for a customized photo frame, it was too expensive. I mean, we were only going to use it for the party and because it was customized, I couldn’t use it for The Baby’s birthday party in a few months. So, why spend the money? Why not make it? I headed back to Dollarama to get two foam core boards ($1 per piece) and taped them together. I used a box cutter and cut out a rectangle. I reinforced the joints on either side and it was ready to be decorated.
Before I get to that…I also wanted a backdrop for my Polaroid photo booth. Again, too expensive for one-time use. I decided to make one—back to the dollar store. I bought six bristol boards ($3 total) in green, pink, and yellow, as well as glue, hole puncher and string and got to work to create…TA DA!
Word to the wise, don’t buy your hole puncher from Dollarama. They are cheap and bust up your hands. The Kid decided she wanted to help punch holes in our dots and the dang hole puncher lasted about five minutes. Spend the extra $1.75 and get a proper hole puncher—especially if you plan to do more crafts. Between cutting out dots, punching holes, and stringing everything together, it took about two hours to make. We glued nine strings of dots to the leftover foam core from our Polaroid photo frame and made our photo booth backdrop.
I got Shopkins props ($2.79), general ones like glasses, ties, moustaches ($10.99), and a wack of other decorations from Amazon using Amazon Prime and next day delivery. The great things about the photo booth props, they are great for playtime with friends after the party.
I LOVE Amazon Prime. With all my heart.
Lastly, I wanted to something special for The Kid. So, I was perusing Etsy. Now, I peruse Etsy A LOT, but I don’t necessarily buy anything. Not because the stuff isn’t lovely, but because I just never have. My sister and I were looking through it and I saw a personalized Shopkins-themed birthday poster by Artful Monkeys. How adorable is that? I ordered the PDF and received it in about three hours. The Hubby printed it at The Printing House and The Kid loved it.
Next time, I will show you how I actually made some of these things, instead of just showing how FABULOUS the finished product looks!
All in all, a great day was had by all and now The Accidental Natural Mama is tired and my back is aching, but it was all worth it. This party was our gift to our crazy, hyperactive, lovable wannabe teenager who is only five. And guess what? I have to do her head full of kinky, curly, thick hair tonight.
Lord help me.
So, that is the long story of why chapter two is still waiting to be posted.
Sometimes, a kid’s birthday party comes first 🙂