Girl 1 is turning 9 this week! Seriously, where does the time go?
For her party, she wanted to host a backyard camping party.
(Budget friendly sidenote: When your child casually throws out a party theme idea that you instantly realize you can do on the cheap, jump on it with all the enthusiasm you can muster. After all, a big, fun backyard, we do have.)
So, let's start with the invitation.
I wanted to fancy it up a bit, but when the birthday girl has other ideas and is willing to construct them herself, you just roll with it. All I had to do was print up the little bits with the party info, and she did the rest with paper from our craft cabinet.
Our Homemade Campfire Cake is just a round cake topped with Twix and on-hand craft paper cut-outs.
Girl 1's response when she saw it for the first time: "Mom, it's just perfect!" -- magical words, truly.
As guests arrived, we decorated paper lunch sacks with paint and glitter then hung them from the clothesline to dry. These would be their goody bags.
Wheelbarrow and 3-legged races are timeless fun! For only the cost of a 4-pack of jumpropes, we added hula hoop competition, jump rope contest, water balloon battle, and scavenger hunt with supplies we already had on hand. If you haven't picked up on it yet, Girl 1 loves to play games! We stocked the prize bucket with items from the dollar bin, and you should've seen how excited the girls were about their choices!
Here the kids are searching for caterpillars as part of the scavenger hunt (talk about killing two birds with one stone!).
Our firepit made a great campsite kitchen for hotdogs and s'mores.
The tent made the camping experience complete! We rented a movie that they watched on the laptop in their tent at bedtime.
Morning pancakes and lots more playtime rounded out a fun time. We sent the guests home with their decorated goody bags full of the prizes they'd won and a S'mores Kit to go.
Talk about budget-friendly fun! Based on my calculations, we pulled this one off for about $30, but I'd bet if you asked Girl 1 about it, she'd tell you it was the best party she's ever had!