Birthday party invite! NEED PRESENT IDEAS. - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 11:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We've been invited to a 4-year-old girl's bday party. We've been friends with the family for a year or so and I consider the mom a good friend of mine. However, they do not simplify like we do-- the kids have tons of toys. I've been working on simplifying and I don't just want to get "another toy" to go on the shelf.

I've thought about making something but just can't come up with any ideas that don't seem lame.

Anyone been in this situation before?
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#2 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 11:58 AM
 
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I feel that way about all presents. I stress about getting just the right gift that is wanted and needed and isn't just more clutter because I don't want to waste my money or make them feel bad. The last child's birthday party we went to I just gave a gift cert. I figured that way they can get what they want, but we don't know them that well, just former classmates of DDs.

I love the idea of giving experiences - like memberships or passes to the museum, aquarium, zoo, local indoor playground, movie theatre, etc. If you are really good friends with the family and this is something you and they would be comfortable with, the gift can be actually taking her there with you and your children.

Mightymoo - Mom to DD (6) and DS (4)
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#3 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 12:30 PM
 
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I almost always give kids something that I make. For a 4yo girl, I would consider: a dress and blanket for her doll, an art smock with a couple of supplies, an apron with a kid's cookbook...
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#4 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 12:55 PM
 
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I'm with Vanessa. I either give something I've made OR I get craft supplies.

The last 4 yo's bday party I went to I gave a 64 box of crayons, some coloring books and a roll of scotch tape. My hubby laughed at the tape but MAN was that kid happy. When he opened it he said "Look mom! I got my own tape!"

I've given tape to three or four kids and each kid was tickled pink.

Kristin -- mom of Erin (11/5/02) and Leah (9/29/05)
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#5 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 12:57 PM
 
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We gave a gift certificate to a book store for the last child's party we went to. If I knew them better, I definitely would have gone for some kind of "experience" gift certificate like to the aquarium or a local attraction. I think they have yearly memberships to these types of places though, so didn't want to duplicate.
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#6 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 12:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Tape is a good idea. My kids LOOOVE tape. I'm not as fond of getting it off my wood floors but whatever keeps them quiet, eh?
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#7 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 01:17 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rachiem View Post
Tape is a good idea. My kids LOOOVE tape. I'm not as fond of getting it off my wood floors but whatever keeps them quiet, eh?

(credit card edge works great!)


At my Erin's preschool they sometimes have an art activity center that has tape, scissors and paper. There are about 5 or 6 different colors of tape. Big hit!

Kristin -- mom of Erin (11/5/02) and Leah (9/29/05)
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#8 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 04:34 PM
 
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Our favorite gift for this age range is a personalzied princess cape from a seller on www.etsy.com called superflykidz.

She works very fast and her capes are very cute
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#9 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 05:10 PM
 
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My DD is four and I have struggled with a lot of the same issues both for giving and receiving gifts. I've written about it a number of times here if you want some ideas for gifts, projects, etc.

Another idea not covered there is a subscription Click Magazine It's perfect for that age and has some nice crunchy themes. Their sister publication Ladybug magazine is nice too. I like magazine subscriptions because it's a gift that lasts all year, kids LOVE getting mail, and they can be retooled into craft projects or recycled when they fall apart. The only downside is that it can take a couple months for the first one to arrive. I usually buy one copy at a bookstore and include a note in the birthday card indicating that a subscription is on order and will begin to arrive soon. That way the child has something concrete and a connection between you and the magazine whenever it shows up.
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#10 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 06:43 PM
 
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I ditto the tape ... my oldest 4 year old will sit for 20+ minutes with a few pieces of paper, some scissors, and tape. He *loves* it, is learning so pretty good cutting skills already, and only needs minimal supervision to make sure other things aren't cut. But, the Click Magazine is another awesome idea, as is "Your Big Backyard", which is the younger-version of Ranger Rick. And, yea, getting mail is a huge issue for my boys. If you go the magazine route, you could always get one copy from the store like CrunchyParent said, and a sturdy magazine box (the kind that will hold like 12 magazines upright and fit on a bookshelf), with a note regarding the subscription.

 Me + dh = heartbeat.gif ds (7/01), ds (11/03), ds (6/06)
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#11 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 08:11 PM
 
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I also like the magazine idea. The last party we went to we gave a wooden puzzle and a subscription to 'Wild Animal Baby'. (The NWF magazine for children not ready for 'Your Big Backyard'.) What about a disposable camera - I gave them out to the older guests at my kids' party last year. The four and five year olds loved them!

I do enjoy looking for and buying gifts for childrens' parties. I give puzzels and gift cards for books quite often. Recently I gave a wooden croquet set and a sand bowling set. I think they were enjoyed by the child. (Of course that doesn't help w/the clutter issue.)
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#12 of 15 Old 09-19-2007, 09:07 PM
 
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The craft store always has wooden shapes, boxes, and bunches of other stuff. Get a wooden "whatever", some paint, and a brush or two.

Otherwise a book is always a good idea and is easy to exchange if it's one she already has.

Mom to (5) (9)
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#13 of 15 Old 09-20-2007, 12:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I ended up sewing a little lovey/blanket for her. She has blankets she totes around and someone took one of them recently.

I had to do it by hand as I kept breaking my machine. Oddly enough, I really enjoyed the process. Loved it so much, I made loveys for my son and daughter as well!

I'm keeping all these suggestions in my head for Christmas, however! Thanks!
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#14 of 15 Old 09-20-2007, 12:45 PM
 
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Since you're crafty, a home-made child-size purse would take you no time to whip up, I' m sure. It seems like little kids love to have bags/purses like their mama.
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#15 of 15 Old 09-20-2007, 02:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jen in co View Post
Our favorite gift for this age range is a personalzied princess cape from a seller on www.etsy.com called superflykidz.

She works very fast and her capes are very cute
Those are CUTE! I just ordered one for a 4-yo bday party we're going to next Saturday. Thanks!
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