Last weekend, we celebrated Ryan’s big 30th birthday! A birthday party was a given because this was a big one. Ryan didn’t want a huge production, he just wanted a few of our closest friends to come over to cookout and watch football. Priorities. We are on a tight budget right now because we are saving money for a new house and trying to pay off our cars. I needed to plan a fun party that everyone would enjoy while also being budget friendly. Here’s how I did it:
Choose a theme – for Ryan’s party, I mixed fall decor with 30th birthday decor. A lot of the decor I found in stores was girly, so I didn’t implement much. Our house was already decorated for fall, so this themed saved us a ton of money and time. I purchased balloons, a cheap banner and confetti and it turned out cute!
Focus on the Guests – You ultimately want to make your guests happy and ensure they have a good time. Invite people who are fun and don’t bring down the mood and make sure to keep the night moving along smoothly. For example, if there is a lull, it may be time to serve food, sing “Happy Birthday,” etc.
Plan Activities for the Kids – If you are panning on having kids over, you definitely need to have some activity for them so they won’t get bored and can be entertained while the parents visit. For us, this was easy. Our house is already set up for kids and the weather was so nice outside, so we let them slide, play golf, play with chalk, bubbles, etc.
Party Budget Tips:
Save Money on Invites – This day in time, there is no reason so waste tons of money on invitations. If this is a laid back party, invite them via email or Facebook! I do not recommend this method for weddings, obviously, but when you are just getting a few friends together, there is no reason to spend all that money on an invitation that will end up in the trash in a couple of days.
DIY Decor – I have a lot of fall decor throughout the house that I made myself to save money, however, I didn’t have time to get too crafty with 30th birthday decor this past week. Instead, I went to Party City and found a very affordable banner, confetti and balloons that I spent less that $50 on. If you have time to make decor yourself, you can probably make it for a little bit cheaper.
Shop at Dollar Tree for Napkins, Plates, Forks, etc.
Make Your Own Cake – I normally make our cakes, but I did not make Ryan’s this year. I wanted it to look good, so I ordered a cake from Publix and it was delicious and so cute! He is a 30-year-old man, so he didn’t want anything too cutesy, but I thought they did a great job incorporating fall and birthday! Best of all? It was only $23! Not bad at all!
Cook the Food Yourself and Scratch the Caterer – Again, there is no need to hire a caterer or purchase prepared food for a party! It can be very expensive. We kept it very simple and grilled hamburgers and hotdogs with chips and salsa. It was a hit with the parents and the kids loved it, too!
Use the Ibotta app to earn money back on the groceries you buy. This is something Ryan and I have been doing for about a month now and it has saved us about $10 so far. We haven’t used it every time we have shopped, but it will definitely add up over a year’s time. Don’t forget to also use coupons! Doing both of these together will save you a lot on groceries.
After it was all said and done, we threw a fun little party for around 20 people for under $125! Not bad at all!
Do you have any party planning or saving tips?