Green Loot bag ideas - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 22 Old 07-31-2008, 11:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My ds is turning 2 next month and we're having a pretty big party...so far pretty cheaply and environmentally friendly but now we're at the loot bag idea stage

the ages range frm 5 months to 16 years LOL

Im trying to go as cheap money wise as possible but I don't want to send the parents home with a bunch of junk(CANT STAND THAT!!!)

Ideas???

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#2 of 22 Old 07-31-2008, 11:15 PM
 
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i usually look for things on sale whenever i am shopping that seem like they will be fun party favors.
i just bought a box of little lisa frank erasers for a dollar at the dollar spot at target to save for my 6 yo dd's b-day in Jan.
the dollar spot at target is a good place to find things sometimes.
also dollar stores are good.
sometimes you may just give items rather than a bag of junk.
at a swim party i gave water squirters as party favors - i got them at a dollar store and they were a fun party favor.
when my children were younger i would look in the clearance areas of the stores for toys on sale with multiple pieces.
one year i found some sets of toys that went with a movie - lion king or something - that were age appropriate for 2 year olds and they were in packs of 4 and they were on sale for a good price and i gave one of each of those to the two year olds.
i have used paper lunch sacks as goodie bags for years - i got a ton of them on sale one year - it was buy one pack and get two free - and i let the kids decorate them by drawing on them and putting stickers on them and then put the goodies in them.
instead of candy i often put fruit snacks in the bags and have given things like sidewalk chalk and bubbles in the summer.
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#3 of 22 Old 08-01-2008, 01:40 AM
 
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If you want green ideas as opposed to just inexpensive ideas, you should probably steer clear of the dollar store or party-store junkies. When my daughter turned two, I went to our local thrift store and bought new-with-tags beanie babies in a variety of animals. (It was a zoo-themed party.) In my view, re-used or second-hand items are green, since they would otherwise be filling a landfill and creating demand for new factory-produced items. You can give out fruit leather or home-made cookies, little pots and seed packets, or art supplies purchased on sale at the back-to-school sales.

We've done very well at our local thrift stores for cute little items--you might see what you can come up with.
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#4 of 22 Old 08-01-2008, 12:55 PM
 
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For my DD's 4th birthday party, we gave out home-made popcorn balls and then had a bowl for each child to pick a prize. Crayons, markers, packs of cards, and matchbox cars were the choices.

With all the back-to school sales going on right now, its a good time to pick up crayons, pencils etc.
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#5 of 22 Old 08-01-2008, 12:56 PM
 
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#6 of 22 Old 08-02-2008, 11:45 PM
 
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How about bubbles?

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#7 of 22 Old 08-03-2008, 10:53 AM
 
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We did giant 5in chocolate chip & sugar cookies with a decorating center... all of it digestible! Put it in wax paper, and toss it in a bag made from scrap fabric that has a draw string on it.

I also made crayon cakes in mini muffin tins and popped in a mini adventure book I made (puzzles, word searches, and games for the older ones, coloring for the younger).

I also love to make play-dough. I added leftover glitter from Christmas, put in some mini cookie cutters I no longer used and a dowel I had DH cut up from soemthing - I have no idea what - but it was a leftover. I sanded the edge of each one to make a "rolling pin".

All in all, it was very well received.

Jennifer
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#8 of 22 Old 08-03-2008, 12:07 PM
 
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We are decluttering our stuffed animals and letting each guest take one home.
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#9 of 22 Old 08-03-2008, 02:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magpie1972 View Post
We did giant 5in chocolate chip & sugar cookies with a decorating center... all of it digestible! Put it in wax paper, and toss it in a bag made from scrap fabric that has a draw string on it.

I also made crayon cakes in mini muffin tins and popped in a mini adventure book I made (puzzles, word searches, and games for the older ones, coloring for the younger).

I also love to make play-dough. I added leftover glitter from Christmas, put in some mini cookie cutters I no longer used and a dowel I had DH cut up from soemthing - I have no idea what - but it was a leftover. I sanded the edge of each one to make a "rolling pin".

All in all, it was very well received.
LOVE these ideas! Thanks!

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#10 of 22 Old 08-03-2008, 11:15 PM
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i love the idea about a tiny pot and seed packet ill have to use that and deffinatly grab the 22 cent boxes of crayons during school supply time!
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#11 of 22 Old 08-08-2008, 02:13 PM
 
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If you have a sewing machine, make the bags themselves out of old clothes or fabric remnants. That way the bag is part of the gift!

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#12 of 22 Old 08-10-2008, 01:20 AM
 
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I've actually found the little seed in pot kits at the dollar spot in Target! I've seen watermelons, tomatoes, and little flower kits recently.

I usually will either give some kind of art supplies -- crayons, a cool pencil or something like that, something kids will use anyway -- or books that I buy from secondhand stores, wrapped up in a pretty ribbon. My favorite party favors, though have been play food items that I've knitted. Last year for DD's first birthday, which had a cupcake theme, I knitted little cupcakes, and this year I'm knitting fruit -- strawberries, bananas, oranges, apples, lemons and limes -- and each kid will be able to pick one. I also knitted little pumpkins for my son's preschool Halloween party, since each parent had to bring 20 favors. That was a lot of knitting, but the kids always love them. This year it'll be spooky spiders. I don't know how green these things are, but they are a nice alternative to the bags o'plastic junk that kids tend to get at these parties.
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#13 of 22 Old 08-10-2008, 09:09 AM
 
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We haven't really done birthday parties in the traditional sense but my sister has had two ideas I really liked.

One year she asked guests to bring a wrapped book, preferably used. The birthday child got to pick first and unwrap, and then everyone else took turns choosing a book and unwrapping it. Solved gift and party favors all in one. I think the only thing that happened was that some people just brought a book, not one that had a good story, etc.

The other year she did many of the things suggested - made bags with scraps of fabric and then stuffed them with muffin tin multi-color crayons, a felted ball, and something else... Maybe a homemade bean bag?

Good luck!

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#14 of 22 Old 08-10-2008, 01:54 PM
 
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Oriental trading company and dharma sell little cloth bags for pretty cheap like .40-.60 a bag or something. You can dye them and use them as goody bags.
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#15 of 22 Old 08-10-2008, 05:07 PM
 
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This year we had a small get together...just my sister's two kids and two brothers we play with often. All the kids love animals, so I gave each a pair of wooden animals I purchased from an MDC coop and an endangered species organic candy bar. (I believe it came to <$5-$6/child.)


One year when we had a large backyard party, I gave each child a Schylling harmonica. They are metal, not plastic, and last forever – my kids have been playing theirs for years. Hanna Anderson outlet used to sell them for $5. (I’m sure the car rides home were loud!)


Another larger party I gave each child a set of wooden lacing beads or wooden lacing cards. Tuesday Morning sold them for $5 each.


We were at a party today and I thought this was a great idea…She bought small tall glass bottles w/cork stoppers at Michaels ($1 each) and different colored sand. The kids made sand art and took them home. The youngest child was two and did it w/help. I think even your older guests would like this project.
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#16 of 22 Old 08-11-2008, 07:04 PM
 
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My daughter went to a space themed party once where the party favors were bottles of outer space. Each kid was given a reused plastic bottle, like an individual-sized drinking water bottle, and went through stations to create outer space in it. They poured water in it, dropped in food coloring, and added various decorations to the water (glitter for stars, beads of various sizes for planets, small human figures for astronauts, etc). It was a great activity, and honestly, my daughter played with that thing for years!
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#17 of 22 Old 08-13-2008, 03:26 PM
 
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I like the idea of the loot being something they've made at the party. Maybe you could have nearly finished bean bags for them to decorate and fill. Younger ones can mouth/cary/toss, middle ones can balance/aim, older ones can juggle (may want to brush up on your juggling skills or print off instructions so older ones can actually know what to do and think it cool).

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#18 of 22 Old 08-13-2008, 08:00 PM
 
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(For older kids...)
One year we did tye die shirts. The kids brought an old white cotton t-shirt they wanted to spiff up and then we provided the dye and tools. We thought about providing new t-shirts but we had kids of many sizes.

(For younger kids...)
Have the students decorate sugar cookies and then send them home (especially with 2 year olds...I am sure they will like their fingers so each kid gets the ones he decorated!)

(Anyone...)
Make picture frames at the party (with young children, have the frame cut out of tagboard then finger paint, dip in glue-glitter, glue on old puzzle pieces, glue on old buttons...) and have a friend take a picture of the birthday child and guest as the birthday child opens up the present. Print it off your computer right away and put into frame. This could be thank you card/ gift at the same time.
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#19 of 22 Old 08-13-2008, 08:09 PM
 
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Another idea...
If parents are there with children, have a craft they can both work on together. Maybe beaded necklaces, painted flower pots, decorated notebooks,... Have items appropriate for the 2 year olds but also something neat on the same theme for the parents.
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#20 of 22 Old 08-14-2008, 06:52 PM
 
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I got some craft sticks (popsicle sticks) at the thrift store and we are going to cut out fairy silhouettes, glue them to the popsicle stick and decorate with glitter.

We are also getting some tiny containers at a craft store, filling with aloe vera gel and adding glitter to make fairy dust for the girls to put on their bodies.

Making something fun to eat is a really good idea also and something dd can help with.
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#21 of 22 Old 08-14-2008, 08:23 PM
 
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instead of toys we do toothbrushes sometimes - its something they will use
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#22 of 22 Old 02-10-2009, 01:58 PM
 
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Originally Posted by janasmama View Post
I got some craft sticks (popsicle sticks) at the thrift store and we are going to cut out fairy silhouettes, glue them to the popsicle stick and decorate with glitter.

We are also getting some tiny containers at a craft store, filling with aloe vera gel and adding glitter to make fairy dust for the girls to put on their bodies.

Making something fun to eat is a really good idea also and something dd can help with.
I love your signiture quote. I want to post that on my chalk board, who said it?
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