Birthday Parties for Military Children: "A Little Creativity Goes a Long Way."


Yesterday, I read a post by The Happy Housewife, a fellow milspouse, in which she discussed a television clip about outrageous kid parties. Apparently, $32,000 was spent on one such party. The Happy Housewife asked her readers if they had unlimited funds, would they throw an elaborate party for their children:

What would you do? If you had the budget of Bill Gates would you throw your kids an expensive party or would you keep it simple? Personally, I believe you can throw an outrageous party for your child for very little! A little creativity goes a long way! It is possible to throw a frugal birthday party for your child. I’ve done it and I’m sure most of you have too!
The phrase "A little creativity goes a long way!" is what struck me. Although the article wasn't about military birthday parties, I recalled a conversation I had with an Army wife a couple of years ago. Their family had just moved to a new post and her son's birthday fell on the day the household goods were being delivered. Setting up a new house is stressful enough, but her son had just said good-bye to his friends and found himself in a new neighborhood with no friends. On his birthday.

A few days later when the house was mostly unpacked, this milspouse arranged a Skype party. She got in touch with parents of her son's friends in the old neighborhood and they had a "virtual" birthday party. While the Skyping was going on, other friends were participating via text. I remember thinking this was genius! Military spouses truly are creative.

I'm sure military families have faced this dilemma on many occasions as birthdays often come during moves and deployments. Plus, we're not always located near extended family so when your child is in a new environment, there may not be relatives to turn to to help fill the void. Do you have any examples of employing creative tactics for your child's birthday parties?

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