5 Affordable Options for a Better Birthday Party!

With 5 boys in the house, we really can't afford to go all out for birthdays. And, since birthdays are often just for close friends and family, we need a way to pull together something amazing with little prep time.  Thankfully, the last few parties we've done have been awesome and affordable.

Here are 5 ways we've gotten bigger birthday memories by being budget-friendly:

1. Make (or decorate) your own specialty cakes and cupcakes.  We love using boxed mixes to make our own cupcakes, but we still go big with a custom cake from the Walmart bakery. I'm still amazed at all the options we can choose from and order.  I have even used their pre-made cupcakes (like the blueberry "minis") as individual treats for guests. I dress them up by putting a party favor on each, such as a ring or a spinning top.

Look how well these Avengers cupcakes turned out using these tricks!

2. Mix solid colors with licensed character partyware.  If your kids LOVES Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, go ahead and get the printed plates and table cloths.  Save money by pairing them with plain green napkins or red cutlery.  Adding some everyday items that coordinate well can save a few bucks and ensure that you'll have enough folks and spoons to go around!

3. Create a custom treat.  Have one featured recipe that really displays the theme of the party.  These apple creations are just adorable and use things you can easily find at your local Walmart for components.  (In this case, a fruit leather treat for the mask, and candy and edible marker for the eyes.)

Or, check out these pretzel "Mickey's" using candy!

4. Keep presents modest.  We usually limit our children's gift to just $20, if we are also throwing them a party.  For my boys, this has never been an issue, since there are so many things they want that fall in that budget.  And since we are a big family, we can team up to put more money toward big gifts, if that's what we choose.  Putting a limit on gifts helps keep kids to be content with what they have -- and get for future birthdays.

You wouldn't even believe how happy Marcus was to get the things he asked for this Birthday. Like the zombie shirt he insisted on (that I thought was really gross);

And the tiny red cactus.

And the giant boxing gloves.  (Thanks, Dad... I'm sure this will end well.)

5.  Focus on the family.  In the end, it's really all about being together.  Since I'm NOT a party planner, I've really come to depend on Walmart to have the party gear, gifts, and food that I need for the perfect event.  And with great deals (like a FREE Smash cake when you order a cake for baby's 1st birthday), it's getting even more affordable with Walmart's every day low prices on the things I think make it perfect!

What makes a perfect, budget-friendly birthday for your family?