While 9-year-olds are still young enough to look forward to the party goody bag, they’re old enough that they don’t have much use for spinning tops, party horns or miniature erasers. But you can give each child a token gift she'll be talking about on the playground without blowing your party budget.
Use the party’s theme as a guide to loot the kids love. If you’re having a pool party, hand out pool toys, such as noodles, floats and submersible rings. For a party in the park, give the kids flying discs, bubble wands, jump ropes or miniature footballs.
Surprise the guests at your youngster’s science-themed party with rock candy growers, super bounce ball kits or volcano making kits. Help your party guests make their own hair accessories at a beauty or fashion-themed party, or let the kids at a sports-themed party decorate their own baseball caps or jerseys.
Give your child’s birthday guests a parting gift to remember long after the party is over, such as pens, hairbrushes or mugs personalized with each child’s name. If you're craft, pick up teddy bears for the children and sew their names onto miniature T-shirts for the stuffed animals.
Lay out plain T-shirts -- one for each child -- around a table at the birthday party and have guests sign their names on each shirt with fabric pens. Write your child’s name and birth date on the back of each one.
Photos preserve lasting memories. Print them for photo mugs for a group of close friends or take a photo of your child with each birthday guest and slip the pictures into inexpensive picture frames before the party is over.
Slumber Party Perks
Kids are often ready for slumber parties by 9 years of age. For your young sleepover guests, give them pillows with pockets for their diaries. To make these yourself, simply sew pockets onto small throw pillows. Add an inexpensive diary so the kids can record their slumber party adventures. Alternatively, pick up some ordinary pillowcases or sleeping masks and let the kids decorate them with fabric pens and glue-on decals.
After an all-night movie fest, send the kids home with vintage-style plastic popcorn containers filled with bags of microwaveable popcorn, cinema candy and a gift card to a local movie rental kiosk or cinema.
For a simple and inexpensive party favor, give each guest a single serve-size box of cereal with a plastic spoon tied to the front with ribbon so the children can celebrate their successful sleepover event the next day.
Let the party guests help to choose their own goody bags at the end of the party. Fill glass jars or decorative containers with a variety of inexpensive items, such as bouncy balls, packages of pencil crayons, modeling clay, coloring books and sidewalk chalk. The kids can go down the line and choose items to fill their own bags.
For surprise gifts, fill one large box with all of the goody bag gifts. Cover the top of the box with fabric and make a slit in the center of the fabric. The kids can take turns pulling items from the box to add to their bags.
If you’re hosting a carnival-type party, have the kids win tokens throughout the party. At the end, let them trade their tokens for prizes to take home.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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