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How much is to much to spend on a bday party?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
X posted to Teens and Pre Teens

Hi all
My dd1 is about to turn nine years old. Each year for the past three years, she and her best friend have had a joint bday party. This year, they want to have it at a place called Pump it Up, basically a jumpy castle type place. Well, the cost is $235 for 1.5 hours and .5 hours of eating. Food is $2.35 a person extra. I'll only be responsible for 1/4 of the costs (her dad and I are divorced and the other family will pay half), but that works out to $60 plus my share of the food.

I'm a SAHM and we live on a tight budget with only one income. This cost seems like a lot to me (even if money weren't tight), but I don't want to be the one to put the brakes on this party. Sigh.

I haven't talked with my dh yet and I've basically already told dd's dad that he had to plan the party this year, so it seems kind of unfair for me to say, "you plan the party, oh I don't like what you planned", KWIM?

I could just let him do the party with the other family and then do something small here, but then she has two parties and that seems excessive. I do want to provide SOMETHING for her and not have her feel, once again, like dad and I can't get it together to cooperate.

Any advice?
post #2 of 7
My two cents -

How much is too much depends entirely on Your finances. Will that $100 for the birthday mean not enough cash for food, rent, etc? On the other hand, if it means giving up dinners out and movies for a month, I would do it.

We live comfortably, but modestly, and do spend about $100 - 150 per birthday, including the gift. (we deal with 2 birthday a year) Can you limit the money you spend on her gift and put that towards the party?

I know a lot of people are agains including children in financial decisions but in this case I think I would talk to my child. Id say, "Ok, Ive saved money for your birthday and we can do a couple of things with it...." I dont know that Id talk numbers but I would explain that, unfortunately, we have to choose between a couple of options and cant have them both.

Good luck working this out.
post #3 of 7
i agree with Larissa. the party may be very important to her, and i prefer spending money on memories rather than thigns anyway. kwim?
good luck!
post #4 of 7
Okay well I wouldn't want to do a super fancy b-day party, but given the circumstances, if you can swing it I say do it.

Next year do something simpler, yk?
post #5 of 7
that doesn't sound like an excessive amount to me but my kids only get a party every three years (we rotate, each child gets a party each year. they are three years apart so it works out swell).

can you and her dad and her all get together and discuss it? maybe it is important to her enough so that dad will think it is a good idea and can throw in an extra $25 to $30. maybe she is willing to fo go a present in order to have a realy fun day. I mean really a trip to a place like this with a friend is something i would give my child as a present. will you and xh be able to atend together to celebrate her day? if not don't woprry about a n extra simple celebration being excessive. we always do cake and ice cream with family seperately sometimes involving 3-4 little celebrations depending on when everyone is available.
post #6 of 7
IMO, $60 is very reasonable. Now, the overall price is too high for me, but I've noticed that in certain areas, birthday parties have gotten to be a huge deal and it seems like people are constantly trying to either "keep up with the Jones" or out-doing each other. I'd say to just pay for this year, and then next year make sure that you are involved with the decision. Another thought is that yesterday, I met a woman and she only lets the kids have parties up until the age of 10. Personally, I like small sleepover parties--cheap and fun.
post #7 of 7
I totally agree with this. 2 years ago, my DH and Dss were planning a $300 birthday party. $300!!! DH had to pay half. I found this rediculous but stayed out of it. No one had thought about the tip at the end an *I* ended up paying it. My DS has always had home parties and loved them. This year he wants a pool party at a local hotel. Since when was it necessary to shell out hundreds every year? why do we feel the need to out do ourselves every year? I feel ya, sistah!:
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