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AIBU to attend a birthday party and give this gift?

(60 Posts)
vmedd Sat 20-Apr-19 12:46:03

This is my first time posting here and I was hoping you guys could help me.
Background is my husband and I have 2 boys. 1 in the school nursery and the eldest in reception. Since December when my husband was suddenly made redundant we have had to considerably tighten our belts on just my part time wage. He had no redundancy package due to being there only a short time. We are financially muddling through & DH now has a job on minimum wage.
Now my big worry is both my children are being invited to parties. 2-3 a weekend. I have had to decline a few that weren't close friends but then my eldest especially is catching on with the chat on the playground at school, then is asking why he missed out. AIBU to give a homemade card with a £5 note in? Or should I decline the invites? I don't want to buy plastic, cheap toys for the sake of it or risk duplicates but by giving £5 am I inviting judgement?
Thank yousmile

3boysandabump Sat 20-Apr-19 12:47:34

I often stick a fiver in a card. Parents seem to prefer it rather than ending up with a load of toys that the kids don't even play with

ohdeartheregotheeggs Sat 20-Apr-19 12:47:52

I don't think you are being unreasonable at all :-) a homemade card is lovely (and shows thought!). Rather than £5 in the card I'd suggest some sweets and maybe a nice book? The book people often sell book collections pretty cheap (think £10) and you could break them up so you have a book for each party if that makes sense?

ohdeartheregotheeggs Sat 20-Apr-19 12:48:34

Actually when I posted that I realised as a child how chuffed I was to receive any money I could go and choose a toy with 🙈 either way I think is fine :-)

Aeroflotgirl Sat 20-Apr-19 12:50:24

I agree, go to Poundshop and get some bits and pieces from the kids/art section, there are loads of character stuff or any discount stores like B&M, Homebargains. Just shop around.

Lulu1919 Sat 20-Apr-19 12:50:58

Homemade cards are fab
Supermarkets often have small books or sticker book colouring books etc less than £5
It’s the thought that counts x

Averyimportantperson Sat 20-Apr-19 12:51:26

The works were recently doing 20 cards for £1. They should keep you going a while.

NotMyUsualTopBilling Sat 20-Apr-19 12:53:07

I have up buying gifts for kids parties a few years ago, I just chuck £5 in a card and don't give it another thought.

I didn't like having parties for mine because of all the random crap toys, books that we already have and/or duplicate items which almost never get played with.

Atleast they can save cash to buy something they like/want.

justasking111 Sat 20-Apr-19 12:53:19

Oh I have always given money, having had three kids, I really do not want more crap. Gift tokens if you baulk at cash are an alternative.

Aeroflotgirl Sat 20-Apr-19 12:53:37

Card Factory also do 10 cards for £1 as well.

RageAgainstTheVendingMachine Sat 20-Apr-19 12:53:38

5 quid in a card is fine, it really is. My eldest was tickled pink when someone did that daffodil

Aeroflotgirl Sat 20-Apr-19 12:55:49

You don't have to put £5 in a card, it is a lot if there are all those parties per weekend. See what discount shops have that you can wrap up, or just get a bag of sweets or box of Maltesers to give. I got a box of Maltesers for my birthday once from a friend at school, I was so happy, it was my favourite chocolate.

Flyingaddict Sat 20-Apr-19 12:56:30

£5 in a card is great, they can put it towards something they really want rather than plastic tat that usually ends up in the bin

KurriKurri Sat 20-Apr-19 12:56:35

Home made card is fine - very nice in fact, and I honestly wouldn't spend as much as a fiver - the birthdya child will be getting loads of stuff, you don't have to give anything except a token gift. I would buy packs of books from the Works or similar and split it up for various parties, add a packet of sweets.
Or go to somewhere like poundstretcher and buy a beahc ball, or a bucket and spade set - children love all that kind of stuff and it will cost less than a fiver.
I think people go OTT on gifts for children's parties - I was on a small budget when mine were little and simply couldn't afford to buy big things for every party child. My kids were perfectly happy with things like colouring books, little sets of dolls/action figures ect that you can get cheap in places like Wilkos or poundstretcher. I know they are plastic tat - but more expensive toys (like Lol dolls etc) are alos plastic tat, just hiked up price plastic tat.

Aeroflotgirl Sat 20-Apr-19 12:56:44

Be selective about the parties your ds goes to, decline if he does not play with the child.

nutbrownhare15 Sat 20-Apr-19 12:58:42

Given that you are getting invites to so many, I'd try to spend less than £5 each if poss. Some good suggestions above. I've been buying Orchard Toys games for bday parties at a cost of £5-6 but we only get occasional invites.

BackforGood Sat 20-Apr-19 12:59:12

Agree with everyone. Whereas (as a child, or as a parent of birthday child) a fiver in a card would be wonderful, you honestly cold just send a card, or wrap up a box of maltesers (£1 in our poundshop). Don't stop him from going because you are short on cash.

Aeroflotgirl Sat 20-Apr-19 13:00:09

nutbrown I love Orchard toys, they are really good, and reasonably priced too.

PippilottaLongstocking Sat 20-Apr-19 13:02:52

Oh wow my child only gets invited to around 5 parties a year! We always do homemade cards, I think it’s much nicer than bought ones, and most kids would be happy to have £5 to spend, although you could probably pick up a small gift for less than that

locketsprocket Sat 20-Apr-19 13:04:24

£5 is more than enough for school friend party

I have a box of party bits, packs of cheap cards, and pick up little gifts that are on sale etc so I always have something in

Greyhound22 Sat 20-Apr-19 13:07:49

I often put £5 in a card it's fine - however I would hate to think a child hadn't come to my son's party because of the pressure to buy a present - a card is fine - they get so much.

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Sat 20-Apr-19 13:09:21

@vmedd - it sounds like a fine present to me. I always felt that what mattered was that children came to the dses' parties and they all had a good time together - it was lovely that people gave them presents, but that wasn't why they were invited, and if there were friends whose parents were in a bit of a financial pinch, and gave a small present or none at all, I would not have dreamt of judging them for it. And I'm glad to say that they boys didn't either.

AuntieStella Sat 20-Apr-19 13:14:06

If you're on your uppers, don't spend as much as a fiver.

Try the nicer stuff from a Poundshop (by which I mean craft supplies rather than tatty/flimsy toys), a set of MatchAttax cards or similar for those who collect them, or get a couple of sets from The Book People and give a book.

Stompythedinosaur Sat 20-Apr-19 13:15:56

I think it's fine, but I also think you can spend less than £5 a party if things are tight. A couple of £1 bags if sweets work well.

Thehop Sat 20-Apr-19 13:16:50

I always stick a £5 in a card.

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