Previous Post Next Post


Brought to you by

His First Birthday Party Invitation!

By Beth Anne Ballance |

Harry’s own family party, where he received a Little People bus & Target-brand firetruck.

Okay, not his first. Harrison’s been to several birthday parties for the kids of my close friends, but this is the first birthday party he’s been invited to that had nothing to do with me.  It’s just so grown-up, y’all.

When I dropped him off at daycare yesterday, I found an envelope in his cubby with his name on it and found a birthday party invitation from one  his “classmates.”  It’s a little boy that Harry has mentioned several times when he talks about his day and I have it on good authority that this little boy is also a master of the big blue slide on the playground.  His party is themed around tractors and trains, so I know Harrison will love the party and I should RSVP to the mom pretty quickly.

But what do I buy for a birthday present?  I need suggestions on what’s appropriate money-wise!

I’m serious.  I have no idea what the “norm” is for spending on birthday presents for classmates.  Like I said, the only birthday parties we’ve attended have been for the children of my best friends and I tend to be a little…umm…excitable about birthday presents.  And first birthday parties tend to be a bigger deal than third birthdays.  I don’t mind spending money on good friends but what about a little guy I’ve never met?  Ten dollars?  My mom said that when we were young, we did presents that cost roughly $5 but these days I’m not sure you can even purchase a decent toy for $5.

Help!  What kind of “guidelines” do you use when buying birthday presents for little friends?

More from BA:

Right versus Wrong parenting.  I’m only batting 50%.

Beth Anne writes words & takes pictures on The Heir to Blair.
You can also find her on the Twitters & Facebook.

More on Babble

About Beth Anne Ballance


Beth Anne Ballance

Beth Anne Ballance is a born and bred Southern Belle, blogging at okay, ba and using words and pictures to celebrate the challenges of motherhood and the joy of life. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter. Read bio and latest posts → Read Beth Anne's latest posts →

« Go back to Toddler

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, profile photo and other personal information you make public on Facebook (e.g., school, work, current city, age) will appear with your comment. Comments, together with personal information accompanying them, may be used on and other Babble media platforms. Learn More.

10 thoughts on “His First Birthday Party Invitation!

  1. Mandi McClure says:

    My son has been invited to a couple parties from school and I struggled with this decision as well. I think $10 to $15 is a good range. The last one we went to, I took my son and let him help me pick out something. I figure if my kid likes it, the party kid will, too.

  2. Courtney Anne says:

    I think $15 is a good price too

  3. Liz says:

    For non-family parties, we stick to a $10-$15 budget. I just can’t see spending more on a kid I barely know.

  4. Sarah says:

    We’ve stuck around the $10 range. That’s enough to get a cool puzzle, game or doll/figurine thing.

  5. Samantha says:

    $10-$15. I would personally feel uncomfortable if a mother I didn’t know well spent more than that on the gift.

    Stuff that my son got for his 2nd birthday were play dough sets, books, puzzles, sticker books, stamp sets. If the little boy likes tractors, you could get a book about tractors and then maybe one or two matchbox cars/trucks. Or perhaps a truck that’s good for playing in the sand, since it’s summer.

  6. Melinda says:

    I shoot for the 20 dollar range. This includes bag, card, tissue, and gift.

  7. Claire says:

    We just did this for the first time, too! I also panicked. Samantha is right: $10-15. When I called the Mom to RSVP, I said, “We’d like to bring S a little gift. What would she enjoy?” the mom said her daughter loves to draw and paint so a trip to Target yielded a strip of watercolors, cool sparkle pens and a pad of paper for $11. The girl was thrilled and all were happy. Call and ask! You might make a new friend – I did. :)

  8. Melissa says:

    I would say 10.00 is about average. My daughter just had her 3rd birthday party and if I had to guess I would say most of her gifts were between 10 & 15. I would say that’s a normal range.

  9. Kyla says:

    We stick to $10-15.

  10. Anne R. says:

    I also agree with the $10- $15 range (which may or may not include a bag & small card, so sometimes I might go a bit over 15). Birthday parties for the little ones are so fun!!! I think we’ve been to 4 in the last 6 months, and Brooke has a blast. :)

    Previous posters have some great ideas, we’ve only been to girl parties so far (haven’t been invited to a boy party!), some neat & cheap add-ons in additions to the main gift I’ve found are a kite (2.50) and one of those pinwheel things that turns.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *.

Previous Post Next Post