How to Make an Inexpensive & Memorable Birthday Celebration for Kids

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With the end of summer on the horizon and three upcoming September birthdays in our household, we have a lot to celebrate right now! Our oldest will be starting her first year of school in a few short weeks, and I am really feeling the push to do as much fun stuff as possible with her in our remaining weeks of summer. We are trying to pack as many pool days, park trips, craft projects and other memories into August as we possibly can. As a stay at home mom, I can tell you the time I have spent home with my children while they are so young has been priceless and I cherish having so many special memories with each of my kids.

The one thing that always gets me is buying gifts. I know in my heart that my kids don’t need grand, expensive birthday parties and extravagant gifts but sometimes it’s hard to reel back from the consumerism and see the big picture. This year I have really challenged our family to move away from presents of toys and instead think of thoughtful things we can do for each other to show how much we care. I love the idea of creating something homemade that will stand the test of time. Something that may not mean a lot to them now but could be saved for the future and be a special memento for years to come.

I decided to create little memory boxes for my kids with some things I picked up at Meijer. We just got this store in our town recently, and I love it there. They have all the party decor and odds and ends I would ever need to throw a party for my kids. I picked up  several cards there for my craft, and was pleased that they had a good variety of the blingy, glittery ones and 99 cent ones by American Greetings. I love that American Greetings has cards for all occasions, some being general and even some with licensed characters! For my memory boxes, I wanted to decorate boxes for each of my girls and display them at their party. Friends and family members can grab a card and write special memories they have with each of the girls and what they hope for them for the future. I plan to put the sealed envelopes in the boxes and not let my kids have them until their 18th birthdays! 

These were super simple to make so I will walk you through what I did. I bought simple wood boxes and removed the hardware with a screwdriver. I took a small can of white spray paint and sprayed the outer surfaces. I took a small picture frame and inserted a pic of my little one and attached it to the top with wood glue. Easy peasy!

I’m obsessed with this little box. When I eyeballed it at the store, it looked like it would be the perfect size to fit even larger cards in and I was right. The box is about 9×6 inches. You could take it to the next level and decoupage the inside, which I may do next. I can never leave a craft project alone. I am always coming back and adding things! 

I can’t wait to set these out at my girls’ birthday party. I’m thinking I will grab one for each of their friends and they can dictate to their parents what they’d like to write in the cards. I will print out some pictures of my kids with their friends as well that they can tuck in to their card. I’m hoping the adults participate too! All of the things I needed for cards, wrapping paper, and decor were easily found at Meijer.

Is creating a memory time capsule with cards something you would do for your kids? I love the sentiment behind it! Share with me some of your favorite inexpensive and meaningful gift ideas in the comments below!

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