We’ve all been there before; your child gets a last minute call asking them to attend a birthday party! It’s late, the party is the next day, and you’re too busy to make a quick dash to the store for a birthday present! What do you do; just not let your child go to the party? Or do you send your child to the party without a gift feeling like you are sending your child to mooch off the party fun without a present in return? Not to worry, we have a way to help you never have that last minute panic again! It’s what I like to call,
“The Birthday Party Present Stash!”
The way the birthday party present stash works is by scouring the sales for great birthday presents, and stock piling them in your closest or other small and hidden space for those birthday parties your children will be invited for. It’s not an “IF” situation, it’s a “WHEN”. You kids will be invited, and this way you can be prepared and save money at the same time!
After every major holiday and various other times throughout the year, always check out the clearance sections. I always make a point of visiting the clearance toys or games section after every holiday or event like Christmas, Valentine’s day and usually once a month just in case. You will be amazed at what great presents you can find here at a fraction of the price! I’ve found $25 two way radios for only $5! I’ve found a $40 remote control car for only $10! I’ve found an adorable $30 Stuffed Bear for only $3! I’ve found various other fun toys for a fraction of the price.
Second: Once you find fun toys that would be interesting to a great number of your child’s friends, go ahead and buy them and then store them in a secret, out of the way corner/closet/box until it’s birthday party time! Feel free to buy multiple items of the same thing, or a variety of items. But don’t feel like you have to fill that Birthday Party Present stash in one trip! Don’t over load yourself and don’t over spend. You have all year to gather presents from the clearance section. Just get the items you think would really be enjoyed by the kids, and are within your budget. If you find a super amazing deal, go ahead and stock up, but otherwise I usually only get 1 or 2 gifts at a time to add to our stock pile. And rarely do I find something every time I go. But if you visit the clearance section often, you’ll be thrilled when you do find those great deals! Also, this method is perfect for scoring gifts for your own kids for THEIR birthdays and Christmas!
Third: Make sure you are selecting a variety of toy options. For instance, just because my boys LOVE Star Wars and Star Wars toys happen to be on sale, I don’t want to stock pile all Star Wars toys. Get a variety of character related toys, or games, etc. That way you will always have a variety to choose from you can select the gift from your stash that best suits that individual child. You will also want to make sure, if you have both Boys and Girls, that you stock pile boy and girl toys. When my boys were younger, I always made sure I had at least one girl toy in stock, because that was before boys and girls had cooties and my boys would be invited to little girl’s birthday parties too. Just something to think about.
Fourth: Think outside the box! Remember gifts don’t always have to be manufacturer toys! Sometimes thinking outside the box will give you the answer. Here are some ideas for other gifts for boys and girls.
Other Boy Gift ideas:
- Easy Homemade Marshmallow Gun! All boys love shooting things, and really, this is very easy to make and all boys will love it!
- Candy! All boys love candy! Use wrapping paper or Cellophane to make it look decorative!
- Gift Card to a Kid friendly location: Sometimes a gift card to a place that kids love to go like McDonald’s, the local kids bowling alley, Movie tickets (one for the kid and one for the accompanying adult) to a popular kids movie or the likes! A place they may not visit very often, it will make the gift more unique and very exciting for the kid.
- DVDs; sometimes you can find great movies at discounted prices.
Other Girl Gift Ideas:
- If you have a favorite boutique/ hair accessory shop; watch for when they have a sale and stock up! Then keep these accessories in your birthday present stash. Almost every little girl loves fashion accessories, and you will have a completely unique present because not many people think to give such fun and frilly items as birthday presents to their kid’s friends. But I’m telling you, the girls LOVE these gifts!
- Homemade Gift basket of Treats. All kids love treats, but girls especially admire a decorative basket filled with either purchased or homemade treats, in a cute basket, wrapped in inexpensive cellophane bags or wrap (cheap from places like Walmart or Target).
- Depending on the age of the child: Real or toy makeup; nail polish, etc.
- Jewelry that is age appropriate.
What are some ways that you save money and are prepared for your kid’s Friend’s Birthday parties?