Financial Friday: A Kid’s Birthday

My oldest child and my only son turns 5 next Tuesday! (Isn’t he cute!)

My not so little guy!


I can not believe I have a child this age.  I can not believe how in love I am with him. I also can not believe I heard these words “Mom, can I have a racing party?”

I am sure the look on my face was priceless. I am not a big fan of parties in general (just not my best relational setting) and KID birthday parties are a bit much and tend to be over the top these days!

In a small moment of insanity I said yes.  I then decided that yes, he could have a party, he could invite 5 families with kids (5 being chosen because that is how old he is going to be) and yes, it could be a racing party.


Food:  We are having our party mid-afternoon.  We will not be serving lunch or dinner.  We will be homemaking gluten free cupcakes and purchasing ice cream.  We will be serving water and lemonade to drink.

Fun: For us, life is about relationships.  Since this is one of our core values this is what our party is focused on!  We cleaned our garage and are making a square track using black garbage bags (donated by my mom) and yellow duct tape (inexpensive). In each corner of the track will be a “station” signified by an orange cone (borrowed from my father in law).

Station 1: Marble Races made with 2 pool noddles (purchased a thrift store $1.07)

Station 2: Car Wash (using a Lighting McQueen pool we already own)

Station 3: Straw Race, Use a straw to blow your car from Point A to Point B. (straws from the $1 Store)

Station 4: Car Race using a track we already own

Center of Track: Free Play, using the 80+ cars we already own

Gifts:  We have made our party gifts optional.  We will not be providing a party favor.  We are thankful our friends want to join us and celebrate this milestone, we want to make our gift to them a really fun time together.

We have also told our guests to come, no gifts needed.  That their presence is gift enough. My son is blessed with what he already has and we would mourn the absence of someone because they felt inclined to bring a gift.

We have hopefully also eased the pressure by letting them know we will be spending our party time playing and not opening gifts.  No guilty personal inner comparisons or judgments to make, no pressure and no one but my son would ever know if anyone decided to bring a gift.


1. Kids Parties can be FUN and AFFORDABLE

2. You DO NOT have to provide a take home gift, make the gift a great time of community

3. Invite without the expectation of GIFTS, you will see your party as what it was meant to be, a celebration of life, not stuff!

To my son, on his 5th year, we love you, cherish you
and can’t wait to see what God has for you next!

I would love to hear your thoughts on birthdays, gifts, parties and your family traditions!  Let me know in the comments below!


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