Raising a kid from birth to young adulthood will cost you nearly $250,000 on average. Even if you spread that number out among 18 or even 20 years, that’s still an eye-popping amount of money. As your child gets older, you’re going to be tempted to spend more money on both material items and experiences. Children’s party in particular are minefields of temptation, but they don’t have to be. Here are three ways to throw the ideal children’s party without dipping into their college fund.
How to Plan Perfect Children’s Party
Make Each Party a Special Occasion
Humans need fun activities to look forward to, because knowing we have something exciting on the calendar makes it easy to get through long days full of school, work, and chores. But while a trip to Disney World once or twice a year is a magical, special event, a trip to Disney World once a week would quickly become boring and routine. Doing something special too often both kills the magic and leaves you at risk of raising a child who is never satisfied with anything.
To avoid that, stick to throwing blowout parties for occasions that only happen once a year, like birthdays and Christmas. There’s no need to throw a party to celebrate things like Squirrel Appreciation Day on Jan. 21, unless, of course, your child’s birthday also falls on that day and you want to kill two birds with one stone.
Let’s take Christmas parties. It’s common to want to hire someone to dress up as Santa and come to your party. Kids only believe in Santa for so long, so you might as well enjoy it while it lasts. And if you’re going to hire Santa, he’s going to need somewhere to sit, so you better look into a Santa chair rental as well, and hey, what about the elves? If you’re going to do all that, that’s fine, but make sure you have the money for it in your budget.
Add a Charitable Element
One of the best things a parent can do is teach a child to care about other people. Self-absorption comes naturally to most people, so learning to look outside yourself and take action is an invaluable skill. Parents can do this every day by, for instance, taking old toys to a thrift shop that serves families in need, then explaining to your kids in basic terms how charities operate. But it’s especially valuable to introduce giving into a party atmosphere.
Adding a charitable element can calm things down and keep all the children from getting too focused on presents. They shouldn’t feel bad for enjoying presents, but you don’t want them to go through life focused only on receiving shiny, expensive stuff. Instead of asking for other children to bring gifts for your kid, ask them to bring gifts for a child in need. Present your child with a few options so they can start building a relationship with a local nonprofit group.
Check Your Insurance
You have to check your homeowners insurance in New Jersey before doing something like renting a trampoline for kids to play on in your backyard. You may think it’s fine, but kids get hurt on trampolines every day, and some insurance policies won’t even cover homes with trampolines. You wouldn’t install an in-ground pool without first checking with your insurance company, so you also need to check with them before you invite a dozen children to play on your property.
Your insurance might tell you to go ahead with the trampoline party as long as you take certain safety measures, or they might outright threaten to cancel your policy. You won’t know until you check with them. The only thing worse than a party injury is a party injury that leads to you getting sued.