Ask Kids to Not Bring Gifts to Birthday Parties

OFor those of you who are sending invitations to your child's birthday party, think about asking them NOT to bring a gift. (This is what my daughter does) That way, those with multiple children in the family that go to a lot of parties or those with low incomes, or have a parent who has recently lost their job can afford to come! This is so very important in these days of layoffs and hard times! I raised 4 children on a "shoestring" and can remember sometimes telling my kids they couldn't go to a party because we couldn't afford to buy another birthday gift.

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(That was in the days BEFORE dollar stores)

If you are a parent on a super-tight budget, you can do what my daughter did: Get a bag and fill it with 5 toys from the dollar store. She recently did this and it was the birthday girl's favorite gift!

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February 18, 20080 found this helpful

What a thoughful idea. Kids have so much these days any way. It is the party that should be important and the kids can have fun

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By bambi2003. (Guest Post)
February 18, 20080 found this helpful

It is a nice idea, but nobody listens to it. I know I don't. I always put no need to bring gifts on the invite, but everyone does anyway.

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I will NEVER go to a child's birthday party without a gift! I have 5 kids and a very tight budget, but I can always scrape a few dollars together for a gift.

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By lisa (Guest Post)
February 18, 20080 found this helpful

Instead of gifts this year. Our daughter's 12th b-day will be Giving not getting ! I'm having a slumber party that evening. They are making simple blankets for the patients at our local nursing home that are in wheelchairs. We will take them to the Home the next morning after breakfast. I know most the girls haven't been to the home & I thought "giving " this year would be more fun then "getting" :-) lisa

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By Louise (Guest Post)
February 19, 20080 found this helpful

When my kids were quite young, we would have small parties, mostly for the neighborhood, I requested that the parents buy an inexpensive gift that could be used for a girl or boy. We would tag the gifts with numbers and each child would pull a number and then they would receive a gift.

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My kids, like most, did not need any more toys and such. Also, depending on the age, the young ones do not understand about sharing. My kids learned that it was about having fun with their family and friends and not about getting gifts.

We also got our kids involved, no matter what the age, with planning and helping with the party. We never did anything fancy, just make things plain and simple and enjoyed the parties.

At times, it was just cake and ice cream. Others, it may be a cook-out. It didn't matter we always had fun.

During the summer months, we would even have birthday party for our pets. This was just usually for the neighborhood kids. It was silly but the kids enjoyed it as much as I did. I'm pretty sure our dog enjoyed the extra treats he got but I'm not sure our cat cared.

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By Sandy (Guest Post)
February 19, 20080 found this helpful

I would much rather search for bargains and clearance items and store them on a closet shelf for such occasions. Kids maybe don't need more toys, but it sure makes them happier. I also happen to think of toys as learning tools and imagination enhancers.

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I have gotten $20 toys for $4 or $5 by searching for clearances and sales. I have a closet full of already gift-wrapped toys. I just write what the item is in small print on the gift where it can later be covered with a bow.

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By kathy (Guest Post)
February 20, 20080 found this helpful

Many dollar store items are made in China and the quality is questionable. I routinely throw away many party favors my daughter gets from attending parties. The plastic odor from these toys smells toxic. I agree with the writer who looks through clearance items for inexpensive gifts. $5.00 worth of dollar store toys is a waste of money, you'd be better off giving the child the $5 to spend as they like.

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March 13, 20080 found this helpful

I can't go to a children's birthday and NOT bring a gift! Kids look forward to that. Don't you remember being a kid? I usually take time to see what the child likes and if with in budget try to find it another thing would be to ask for books instead of a gift if I am still stumped I do a gift card. When kids were very small I set a $10 limit now that they are a lil older I do walmart gift cards $15.

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Everyone going to a party knows usually you bring a gift so as long as they do what they can afford it's ok. I didn't have a lot of money being a stay home mom so sometimes it meant kids made their friend a card and we stamped and painted our own wrap paper this was fun and used what we had on hand!

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By Louise (Guest Post)
March 17, 20080 found this helpful

This is about my previous post. I never said that my child did not get a gift but so did the other neighborhood kids. Neighborhood birthday parties in our area were non-stop all year round due to the fact that there was a lot of kids. At family parties, it was a usual birthday party. My kids were happy sharing with their friends in the neighborhod. They were taught that it was more important to give then to receive. It must have worked because my kids are now very giving and loving adults, always willing to help anyone in need.

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By Robin S (Guest Post)
August 22, 20080 found this helpful

Great idea, teach the value of giving by asking everyone to bring the amount they would have spent on a gift and donate the amount to a charity your child decides upon. I like the idea of working on crafts for a charity I have my AWANA girls make cards for nursing home residents every year.

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