How to Create the Ultimate Kid’s Birthday Party Without Breaking the Bank

This past weekend we threw our little girl the most fun birthday party! We had the family over & it was such a great time. But let me tell ya…planning for & preparing for a kid’s birthday party is so much work. And stress, I’ll add. What’s the number one cause of stress in situations like these [at least for most of us]? Money. After going through a few birthdays with my tiny ones, I’ve learned a few things. Everything from how to decorate, gifts, food, treats, games, you name it. All for a reasonable price. Especially for us. Our kiddos’ birthdays are so close to each other, so it’s important that we try and spread the “wealth” around if ya know what I mean. I am totally not a party planner, but I will share with you what’s worked for us & hopefully they will help y’all have an awesome party for your kiddo too!

Let’s get this party started! 🙂

No. 1 Make a New Best Friend…PINTEREST

I got ALL of my ideas for my daughter’s party from Pinterest. If you have a super creative mind, by all means go for it. But if you want to create less stress & thought on your part, just search what you’re going for on Pinterest. If you don’t have an account it’s super easy to create. Paislee, my daughter, wanted a My Little Pony party. My first thought was, “I’ll just go to Party City & get all the themed plates and such.” Once I started searching on Pinterest though, I found a ton of cute decorations that I knew would cost so much less. It’s your one stop shop for anything & everything you could ever think of! Most things you find you can just make yourself, which is SO much cheaper than going out and buying it all. If you want some cute party ideas and decorations, you can follow my party board 🙂

No. 2 Make your Own Cake

Birthday cakes can be so incredibly expensive. The year Paislee turned two and Noah turned one [so, last year] I started the tradition of baking their cakes myself. I know what you’re thinking…”how does this cause me LESS stress?” Well for starters, it’s much, much cheaper. So you won’t have to worry about the expense of paying someone else to make your cake. And it doesn’t have to be fancy. I even used boxed cake mix. don’t be ashamed. My favorite thing about making the cake myself is that I know it’s baked with love. I pray my kiddos appreciate this gesture I make for them each year & it makes for precious memories. Plus, the theme is usually something my kiddos are already into and they have toys I can use as toppers! Nothing better than using things you already have. Less money out of your pocket. I have never spent more than $20 to make their cakes! And the materials you build up over time making the cakes can be used for years to come, so go you for being proactive! 🙂

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I found this rainbow cake recipe on Pinterest…duh. You can find it here. The only difference from this recipe and the one I made is that I used pre-made frosting. But homemade frosting is so good and super easy/cheap to make too!

No 3. Your Second Best Friend….Dollar Store

All of our decorations came from the dollar store. Serving bowls, scoops, streamers, balloons….E V E R Y T H I N G. You would be amazed at all the decor they have. Granted, our “theme” for Paislee’s party was super easy to create things with. My Little Pony is easy to make into a “rainbow” theme as well. Rainbow Dash all the way! Some decorations were ones you put together yourself, but they were only a dollar so it was totally worth it. And the balloons we got were ones you blow up yourself, so we didn’t have to pay for someone to blow them up with helium. Perfect.

Even all the table clothes were a dollar a piece & made for a great pop of color that went with the theme!

My mom made this adorable little piece for the fireplace where her presents were placed. She got the fabric from Joann’s & the ribbon from Michael’s. Two places that always have coupons available online- you can go to the RetailMeNot website. They also have an app for your smartphone. I use it almost everywhere I go, it’s very convenient.

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No. 4 Use What You Have at Your Disposal

I am always about using what you have. Close family and friends are usually always willing to help out if you’re needing to use something for a big party like this. We borrowed my Nana’s big tables & my cousin’s fold up chairs for everyone to sit on/at while eating. My mom has this beautiful milk glass collection that went really well with our candy bar.

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The less you have to go out and buy or rent, the better. When you’re looking on Pinterest, look for things that you can incorporate with materials you already have. It makes your life so much easier. And cheaper.

No. 5 Make Your Own Games & Activities

This kind of piggy backs off of my previous point. Try to use things you already have & turn it into something fun! We live in Texas, so it is crazy hot right now. Originally we talked about getting a bounce house or some type of blow up water slide for the kids. Those things run anywhere from 100-300 bucks. It gets pretty pricey. When it comes to children, you really don’t have to try so hard. They enjoy the littlest of things. It’s like when you buy them that nice, big electric four wheeler & they’d rather play in the big box it came in. We decided to blow up the kiddie pool, set up the slip n slide & filled the kid’s water table with water beads. The kids LOVED it. They end up making up their own games too. So this is something you really don’t need to stress about! Kids aren’t complicated! Especially little ones.

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If you’re on the artsy side or have someone in your family or friend circle who is willing to help, take advantage of that! My sister is an awesome artist & I had her make this cute little “pin the tail on the pony” game. We used some cheap little thin ribbons as the tails. The kids had fun with it!

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The other thing we decided to do was a candy bar for all the guests! It was such a cute idea that I found on Pinterest. My mom was more than willing to help & totally took it on. Again, use what [and who 🙂] you have! I liked this idea more than giving the kid’s a goodie bag. My Little Pony is a pretty girly theme, so this was a good way for us to let everyone take something home & wasn’t gender specific.

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The recipes for the treats we made can be found here:

Fruity Pebble Rice Crispie Treats

Unicorn Popcorn

Chocolate Dipped Wafers

No. 6 The Gift

Last but not least, don’t stress too much about the gift. Chances are that if you’re throwing your kiddo a party, they will be showered with gifts. Don’t feel like you have to spend a ton of money or get them a ton of gifts. Because that will happen anyways. I don’t even remember the gifts I got at my birthday parties growing up, but I do remember the party and people that came to celebrate with me. That’s what matters most! We had Paislee open our gift to her on her actual birthday. It was more intimate for us & she was able to enjoy it before she got her other gifts during her party.

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This was such a fun party & day. I will always remember it! Some of the decorations we used can even be used again! Some are hanging in Paislee’s room because she loved them so much 🙂 A birthday party doesn’t have to be complicated. Simple decor & treats will do the trick, I promise! As long as there’s free food for your guests, they will be happy! I tried to link up all of the recipes & other helpful things you might need, but if I forgot something or if you have any questions just shoot me a comment below!

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As always, God bless

Brittany

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Teriyaki Chicken with Cauliflower Fried Rice

It has been too long since I experimented in the kitchen! I love to cook. I love to try out new recipes & create some of my own. One of my favorite types of food is Chinese. I am a huge rice lover & I could eat spicy food for days. But I also try my best to be healthy in the food choices I make. If you’re like me you will ADORE my newest creation!

This meal is so perfect for meal prepping or just a quick meal for those super busy days. Our kiddos just recently started going to preschool full time [excuse me while I go cry 😭] and I will be working full-time starting next week! Lots of big changes and busy days are ahead. So I need meals just like this. I can still get my cooking fix in & not have to worry about dinner the next few nights!

There are a few foods that I crave intensely. Chinese is one of them. I have taken a little detour on the “traditional” chicken fried rice recipe. I’ve made it healthier & tweeked it a little based on the foods I know my family likes.

The number one thing I like to tell others before they start a new recipe is to get out all of your ingredients & portions BEFORE you even get your pots and/or pans out. Being prepared just creates a more calming atmosphere when cooking.

This is what you’ll need:

1 rotisserie chicken OR 2 large fully cooked chicken breasts, shredded

4 cups organic cauliflower rice

2 large organic carrots, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 14.5 oz can organic green beans OR about 2 cups fresh green beans

2 Tbsp organic coconut oil

1 tsp organic onion powder

1/2 cup low sodium teriyaki sauce/marinade

*optional* 1 tsp red pepper flakes

Salt & pepper to taste [I used about 3/4 tsp of each]

Once you have all of your ingredients prepared, get out a large pan or wok. A wok is the best thing to use because it gets really hot really fast, & that’s what you want.

Put in half of your coconut oil & turn the heat on to about medium high. You want all that oil to melt and get really hot.

Then throw in your carrots. I like to let the carrots cook for about 3 minutes before adding the green beans because they aren’t as tender. If you are using fresh green beans go ahead & throw all the veggies in together. Once the carrots begin to soften, add the green beans & minced garlic. The garlic goes in last to prevent it from burning. I love garlic, but burnt garlic is yuck. And make sure you stir the veggies around at a pretty consistent rate as to avoid any of them sticking to the pan or burning.

The traditional fried rice recipe calls for sweet peas. You can add whatever veggies you prefer. My husband HATES peas, so I altered it a bit so he would actually eat it. Broccoli would be really yummy too. Totally your preference.

The veggies should be completely heated & softened. Then remove them from the wok or pan. Set them aside on a plate. Next you’ll want to melt down the rest of your coconut oil.

Add your cauliflower rice. I bought mine premade, but you can always make your own in a food processor.

Let the rice cook up for about 3-4 minutes or until the tenderness is to your liking, then add your chicken. I bought pre-shredded chicken [its okay to be a lazy cook sometimes]. Our local grocery story has containers with pre-shredded chicken that’s actually cheaper than buying a rotisserie chicken. Less work for me!

Make sure the chicken blends well with the rice. Get it heated up really well then add your spices & teriyaki sauce. This is when you can have the option of adding red pepper flakes to your dish. My kiddos were going to eat from this batch so I decided not to add it in, but I did add some to my own portion later on 🙂

This is the sauce I used…

I like my stuff really saucey so I add a little more to my personal bowl, so that’s always an option. This stuff is so yummy.

Okay so after all that rice & chicken start soaking up all that flavor, you’re finally ready to add those veggies back in & watch the magic happen.

Please restrain the urge to lick your screen right now…I cant even. These pictures have me drooling over here y’all 🤤.

And there you have it! An easy, healthy & delicious dish for the whole fam! Yes, my kiddos even ate it. If my goobers approve, it’s safe to say yours will too!

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God bless & happy eating!

Brittany