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<p>We are celebrating DS's Bday on the 12th of Dec. We are also on a very limited budget. Do any of you thrifty and ultra-creative mommas have any ideas? It is cold here (Colorado), and I also have DD who isn't quite 2 and DS2 who is 7 months. I want everyone to have a good time, but for it to be special for DS too! I am open to all ideas!</p>
 

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<p>Moved to The Childhood Years</p>
 

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<p>My son will be four on the 16th, so they're very close in age!</p>
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<p>We usually do a small party (family only), where I make the cake "match" the gift - last year he got a Hot Wheel race track, so I made a road cake and put a few toy cars on it.  This year, he's getting a mechanics set thingy (it has a working drill and puzzle cars that he puts together with bolts and screws and whatnot).  So, I figured we'd do a drill cake by cutting a 9x13 cake into a drill shape, using Red Vine for a drill bit, etc.  It's gotten harder to do a cake with little sister around, but it's important to me (I don't think my son would care if it was just a regular frosted cake!).</p>
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<p>I let him choose what we have for dinner.  Last year it was pizza and corn on the cob.  Interesting combo, but it's what he wanted.  I also let him choose what flavor cake he wants, but he doesn't know how it'll be decorated.</p>
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<p>Balloons are cheap but make things feel special - especially because they can draw attention away from the Christmas decorations around the house.</p>
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<p>What about making a crown out of construction paper, markers, glitter glue, etc?  Or using a special plate that's only for the birthday child?  Or decorating his chair with streamers?  Taking a plain shirt (or undershirt) and making it a "birthday boy" shirt?  I'm all about having simple family traditions that become very special over the years.  Have fun!</p>
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<p>We do a messy party where we find a place the kids can play with paint or cornstarch/water and get really messy - they love it! </p>
 

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<p>Thanks mommas! Good Ideas!</p>
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<p>I also let my kiddos pick out what to have for food and cake. Pizza is it for this year, and strawberry cake. I will make the cake from scratch. He said that he wants little pizzas so everyone can make their own- sound good to me! I will pick up some dough from Whole foods, and make some pickled peppers and get all the other toppings ready the day before. So simple, and since it won't have meat, cheap too! I thought about doing decorate your own cupcakes instead of a full cake- so that could be the mess factor for the kids (and some of the kid-like adults too!).</p>
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<p>We have 20' ceilings in our living room so I thought about hanging a ring with streamers in the center and attaching the streamers to the walls in all directions for a colorful, circus tent effect. </p>
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<p>Any other thoughts are welcome!</p>
 

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<p>I did this at my DD's recent party and it was a HUGE success:  get several big cardboard boxes and staple them together into a "fort." Get crayons, magic markers, sparkly glue and other fun stuff and let the kids get in touch with their inner graffiti artists. The kids spent a lot of time drawing and coloring on the "wall" and they kept going back to it throughout the party.</p>
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<p> Honest. The kids had a total blast. Cardboard boxes. Go figure. :)</p>
 
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