How Not to Go Broke Receiving Birthday Invites

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Do you have more than one child?  Do they each get invited to multiple birthday parties each month? On average the boys are invited to 4-6 birthday parties per month.  In December, we had 9 birthday parties plus one for Ryan (he turned 4).

I want to share some tips on how not to go broke with so many birthday parties!  These are things that I’ve learned over the last year and I welcome your feedback and suggestions on things that have worked for you.

First, stock up on presents.

We have a spare closet and any time I find toys on clearance I buy them and place them in our “gift closet”.  A few months ago while at Target they had a fabulous clearance on their toys and I happened to be in the right place at the right time.  They had games that were originally $25 clearanced out at less than $4 per game.  I bought 16 of them.

During that same sale they had Polly Pocket on clearance and their $19.99 packs were clearanced out at $2.  Seriously.  Can you guess how many I bought and I don’t even have girls?

I was also able to stock up on a boatload of Toy Story items just before Toy Story 3 came out.  Target had all of the non Toy Story 3 items on clearance to make room for all the new Toy Story 3 toys that were coming.  The difference between the old items and the new items?  Nothing.  Just the number 3 on the package.  Again, $19.99 items for less than $4.

Immediately after Christmas we were at the Lego outlet store and they had all of their lego sets at 50% off.  We stocked up on multiple larger sets for our boys as well as smaller packs for gifts.  Awesome deals.

I buy a variety of gifts for a variety of ages and for both boys and girls.  Anytime I’m at a store such as Target, I scan the clearance end caps in the toy section.  You never know what you’ll find.  Just keep your eyes open.

With gifts already purchased and in our gift closet there is no more last minute running out on the way to the party to purchase something in a rushed manner and at full price.

Second, design generic gift tag cards.

This was a no-brainer for me.  Since I own My Hello Designs, it made sense to me to have these on hand.  I used to always forget a birthday card to include with the gift.  Then I would scramble looking for something to use last minute.  Often times I would use a Sharpee marker and just write on the bag itself.  I always felt bad for doing that though because not only does it look a little tacky, but then the gift bag cannot be reused and that is unfortunate.

Recently I designed these super cute gift tag cards.


How cute are those? So now I just grab one and can either stick it inside the bag; tape it to the outside of a wrapped gift; or even hole punch it and string a ribbon through it and tie it to the gift bag.  Wa la!  Easy peesy.

Now I no longer have to search for a birthday card.  I designed the above cards to be business card sized and they are printed on nice textured heavy weight card stock type paper.  A pack of 50 cards would run you about $25 (plus shipping).  If you order the exact design above (with a different from name of course), I would be able to offer them at $20 plus shipping.  That’s less than 50 cents per card.  What a deal!

I can custom design cards for you in a variety of sizes and price ranges.  Contact me at for more information.

Third, stock up on gift bags and wrapping supplies.

After Christmas I stock up on wrapping paper, gift bags and ribbon.  I purposely look for these items that do not scream Christmas.  For example, look for solid colors or stripes or polka dots.  Last year I found some great gift wrap that had red, blue, green, yellow and orange stripes.  Nothing about that was Christmasy, but I purchased it at 75% off anyway.  I also buy solid color wrapping paper and even though red and green are Christmas colors, if you put the green wrap with blue ribbon or a chocolate brown, it does not look like Christmas.  Awesome.

You can get these deals not only at Christmas, but after each holiday.  After Valentines Day you will find solid red, solid white and solid pink on clearance.  Stock up!

I know you may already be doing some of the above to save money and time, but if you’re not I hope you found the above to be helpful.  And if you have a suggestion or idea, please share by leaving a comment.  I would love to hear what you do to save time and money.

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  1. This is something that can always do the same for booking the reality that could fight for this things to happen. –

  2. happy sits saturday sharefest!

  3. Jean, what fantastic ideas! Seriously, brilliant! I love the idea of having the pre-printed gift tags…I will be considering purchasing those. I can’t even tell you how you’ve got my mind spinning.

    One question – how do you keep the boys out of the gift closet? 🙂

  4. These are some GREAT tips- what an awesome post this. I am going to follow up on these tips!

  5. How cool. I stock up on toys and stuff too. I might want to order those cards. They are so cute.

    • Typical Suburban Family says:

      You should order the cards!! Such a great deal! They can be used for friends, family, or anyone!!

  6. Great ideas! I have a huge family and we celebrate birthdays 4 times a year…seasonally. I try to stock up on gifts like this too when I see a sale and it does help to always have a little something on hand for the kids and the adults. I’ll have to check out the toy section at Target more often!

    • Typical Suburban Family says:

      Hey Ashley!! How’s baby Alexander? Can’t wait to see some more pics of him. He’s such a handsome little guy. Hope you are all doing well, feeling good and adjusting to parenthood. BTW – if you don’t have time to check out the toy section at Target perhaps you can just send the dogs in for ya 😉 That is seriously one of the funniest posts I had ever read. I laughed out loud.

  7. Thankfully we do not have birthday party invites for any friends, yet, but seriously you have some great ideas!

    • Typical Suburban Family says:

      Just wait…. all of a sudden the invites start coming out of nowhere and they don’t stop. All of the daycare classmates and neighborhood friends. It’s so much fun and we try to go to as many as we can because the kids really do have a blast. But it does get expensive.


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