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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What are your thoughts on party favors? What kinds of things do you like to include (or not like your kids to receive?) and how much do you spend per kid on favors? It seems as though party favors are approaching the cost of gifts these days! DDs are turning 6 in 2 weeks, so their friends are mostly in 1st grade. tia!
 

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What I've seen at a couple of parties recently is a box, or basket, near the front door. Each guest takes one item upon departure. At one party it was a small puzzle, at another it was a super-soaker water toy. (Not too sure about the super-soaker choice for the basket... I've already had to hide it from my kids!)<br>
I think this is a great idea; I plan to do it at our next party. Much easier and cheaper than putting party bags together.
 

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My kids don't a get a big b-day party every year so sometimes I do really special stuff when I do give them a b-day party. Of course the total amount spent would depend on how many kids were coming but but I would probably spend no more than $50 for a special age party and I would try to keep it under that on a reg.<br><br>
I don't like getting the cheap little plastic "clackers", etc. I think stickers are fun and maybe a marker with a little note pad. You could buy a package of markers and just break it up. Target usually has some fun $1 stuff that is way better than things you get at the dollar store.<br><br>
Sometimes I'm torn about buying that stuff though b/c it's junky. MagicCabin.com has some cute party favor stuff like boxes of magic tricks, snail scooters, and more. Check out the sale page or the under $10 items, it's just a little more expensive but in that case I would just buy each child one thing like a set of jacks or something.<br><br>
Also, at a party I went to, when it was time to open gifts, they gave each child the gift that the brought for the b-day girl so they could hand it to her. When the child handed the girl the gift to open, that is when she gave her guest a goodie bag. So the child had something to do while the girl was opening presents. This was a 4 yr. olds party so I don't know that it would be necessary for older kids but I thought it worked beautifully.
 

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We made homemade play-doh in little containers, tied with a ribbon and attached a little cookie cutter on top. Nice, and inexpensive. Plus DS could help make the play-doh.
 

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We did little gift bags for our DD preschool class. DD greatest LL is gifts so putting together something was important for her for 12 bags and stuff I spent maybe $12-$14?? total. Each bag had a pencil a little thing of bubbles an animal shape erraser and a sheet of stickers (animals or cars)<br>
Deanna
 

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We had a superhero party for my son's 5th (last January) and got satin capes for all the kids from Etsy. They were $8 each. We also made superhero wristlets and masks out of craft foam, foam stickers, velcro, and elastic at the party.
 

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I find this topic really interesting.<br><br>
I'm not "bashing" anyone's thoughts on it ~ just trying to understand. Why do the guests receive gifts?<br><br>
I've seldom heard anything good about the items that are in goody bags. The buyers seem to feel they've spent too much and the receivers seem to think they are worthless. Anytime we receive them they've gone right in the trash because they are usually broken before we get home.<br><br>
I do like the homemade playdough idea! That sounds pretty useful and inexepensive. Plus, a lot of fun for your own child to be involved in. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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In our case her classmates recieve gifts simpily because its important to my DD they do. PArt is yes "so and so came and she shared cupcakes or Johnny came and gave candy so I need to also.. but a larger part is that she is a real gift giver she wants to share something special with her friends on her birthday.. SO shes carefully chose the perfect pencils and stickers etc and carefully made up each bag and assigned who got what bag because they were all made special for each. Honestly I'm not sure the history behind the grab bags ect but its why WE do it.<br><br>
Deanna
 

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Honestly, I've never noticed when we DON'T get a favor... but I do notice ones that are useless or just boring. I'd rather not give anything except the FUN of the party than give a dollar store favor.<br><br>
I do still like the idea of giving something to the kids who come... I think it's fun. But I also like the challenge of doing something unique and fun for the kids who recieve them, and maybe tie in with our party. Like with the play doh we made- it was green and we used shamrock cookie cutters because DS's b-day is St. Patty's Day.
 

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My guideline is $2-$3 per guest, non-edible, and something I'd want my kids to receive. Bonus points if it's "consumable," such as bubbles or art supplies, or useful, such as a mug. I aim for one item, not a bag of cheap toys. At the most recent party, we had shiny pinwheels in a vase on the center of the picnic table, and each child took one home.<br><br>
We do party favors because my son loves giving (and receiving!) them. It's a fun way to say thank you to guests, and helps little ones especially with the transition of the party ending.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I love the pinwheel idea! - and how fun to have it be part of the decorations too! I can't stand the plastic junky stuff that's a total waste and choking hazard for younger sib's too...
 

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<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm not "bashing" anyone's thoughts on it ~ just trying to understand. Why do the guests receive gifts?</div>
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I think this is a good answer to the above question. Since most children don't send out thank you notes or anything. Plus I just don't think that 2-4 yr. olds really get the concept that it's someone elses b-day and they were just loaded with "stuff" but they didn't get anything. So something small ensures that the little guests keep a smile.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>P-chan</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11589960"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">It's a fun way to say thank you to guests, and helps little ones especially with the transition of the party ending.</div>
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I definitely think party favors should end at a certain age. I don't know what I think that age might be though...possibly 8.
 

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I am sure I am in the minority but I love doing kids parties and especially putting together party bags. In fact I am mulling over a business concept based on this.<br><br>
Anyway, it was my daughter's 5th b-day a week ago and we gave out party bags. I always do a theme and this year it was a garden party picnic. I got mini organic cotton shopping bags and filled them with, a set of glass marbles (I got these on sale for 10p (approx .20 cents) each!), seed sticks, retro sweets, bug or butterfly stickers, glow stick (sent by my mother) and a ladybug clip.<br>
They painted terracotta pots to take home at the party so the seeds went with that. Also there was a bug hunt so they got a magnifying glass and whatever bugs (toy!) they found to take home as well.<br><br>
What I spend on the bags depends on the number of children at the party. If it's a crowd such as this last one was, it will be less than for an intimate party.<br>
So, for the crowd it was about £3.00 ($6.00ish per child).<br><br>
Aside from the fact that they are fun, we do party bags because I want my daughter to give something to her friends to say thank you for celebrating with me. I have her put them together and hand them out. She even spent 45 minutes making name tags for each one this year.
 

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I'd prefer that my dc's receive one nicer thing, than a bunch of junk in a gift bag. Nicer doesn't have to be expensive, but if you're going to spend $'s on a bunch of stuff that is cheap, I'd really rather that my kids don't get it because they won't play with it and I wind up tossing it in the garbage.<br><br>
Some other ideas: watercolors, colored pencils, and other art supplies that are age appropriate. I saw a compass and protractor set the other day that I thought would be cool. Bubbles are still a big hit with both my dc's.<br><br>
Small canvas tote bags (that you can get at craft stores) and let the kids decorate them, or personalize/decorate them ahead of time. Same can go for plain t-shirts. Small picture frames can be nice, especially if you follow up with a photo from the party - maybe a group photo of everyone?<br><br>
I love the terra cotta flower pot and seed idea.
 

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For my girl's bday party this past March I bought little buckets of sidewalk chalk (I *think* there were 12 sticks per bucket) for a dollar something each-we had several different age kids to give party favors too and these were fun for the little ones as well as the older kids. I bought them in the school supply section at Walmart but I've seen them at Dollar General and Target as well- Target being the most expensive. In the past we've done crayons w/ small notepad, mini-playdoh containers, bubbles, pinwheels, mmm... I know there's more. My brain just isn't working. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> I agree with the pp. I just can't stomach shelling out money for all those tiny cheap plastic party favor toys. They seem so pointless.
 

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I am assuming lots of folks said they don't do par-tay favors? I'll admit it, we love to give party favors.<br><br>
OK. Depending on age : Board books, little cars, dinosaurs, sidewalk chalk, blank notebooks, homemade playdough, bubbles, stickers, pens, chop sticks, gum, halloween candy, paperback books, water colors, markers, bees wax strips, glow in the dark stick- on stars, GC for ice cream cones, gold fish cracker bags-- pretty much anything that doesn't break the bank. We're open about what we give as our cheaopla/fun parting gifts, lol, and it all depends on the party theme.<br><br>
Basically, whatever little things kids enjoy. We are party people. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/joy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="joy">:
 

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Just wanted to add, the point of party favors are to console the children who aren't being showered with gifts, ie the guests. In theory it is hard for children to see someone else get all the gifts when they get none.<br><br>
Beyond that, it is simply a tradition. One that I believe can be left behind when kids are past that stage. Unfortunately some people believe that favors are necessary at all parties including weddings. All you actually need to provide to your guests are: some form of entertainment, food appropriate to the hour and occasion, something to drink, and somewhere to sit down. And access to a restroom. Anything beyond that is bonus.<br><br>
I like it when the kids get stuff they use up, like bubbles, stickers, pencils, etc. I don't like cheap plastic toys that don't even work and break immediately. (Who DOES?) When we did party favors we gave out play-doh (not homemade, I'm not that cool), pens, and matchbox cars. That went over pretty well. There have been some great ideas here. A book is a great idea if you can get a good deal. At one party we went to we got organic lollipops. That was awesome. Usually I have to sneak away the garbage food from the bags before the kids see it, or if they see it, I have to be really stealth about not telling them they can't have it in front of the host.<br><br>
Sorry, all that and I didn't even answer the original question: I think I spent about $15 for all the favors when dd turned 4. That was the most I would have been willing to spend, too. She had 4 or 5 kids come to the party so that averages less than $4 per kid, and we had extra favors left over.
 

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We usually don't spend very much. My kids' birthdays are in August so we hit back to school sales for crayons, notebooks, glue. We've done bubbles and sidewalk chalk when we had a playground party. Glow in the dark stars at a Dora party. For her ballerina tea party we made tutus from ribbon and netting and I bought tea cups and saucers from Goodwill and those were both party props and then the kids took them home at the end (we even had a tub with soapy water so the could wash and dry their cup and saucer before they left).
 

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<div style="font-style:italic;">We made homemade play-doh in little containers, tied with a ribbon and attached a little cookie cutter on top. Nice, and inexpensive. Plus DS could help make the play-doh.</div>
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Thanks for this idea. Just yesterday, I was standing in the dollar store thinking about how I just couldn't stand to fill up bags with all that cheap plastic stuff to give to kids at ds' party on friday. I finally gave up and was just going to not do anything or give each kid a balloon or something. Especially since I have to work 12 hour shifts the next two days, then be ready for a party on friday!!!<br><br>
This was a great idea and so we did it today. We decided to make red and blue playdoh and white "swamp gunk" since it is the 4th of July and all... ds had fun making it and I have something not cheap and plastic to send home with the kids!!!
 
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