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Goody bags of all ages...
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ncp wrote in parenting101
We're having a party for my baby's first birthday, and I'm trying to figure out what to give out as goody bags. In addition to hordes of adult relatives, there will be 6 kids (age range 2.5 - 12) and 3 babies (under age 1). (There will also be  17 y.o. girl, does she get a goody bag?) The last time we had an actual party-party, my older son was 2 and the other kids were around the same age, so we gave them each a cheap stuffed toy, crayons, soap bubbles, etc from the dollar store. This time I'm at a loss as to what to put in the goody bags. We'd also like to keep it on a budget since we're spending a buttload on food and cake. Any suggestions?

An inexpensive book each, and a gift card for the teen? You know I always suggest more books, though.

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We received a gift card for the first time in lieu of a goodie bag last week. It was for about $2 at Dairy Queen. I think the price of one cone. I had never see that before, but my daughter seemed excited :)

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At 17 I still enjoyed ice cream cones :) But I'm sure a 17 year old isn't going to expect a goodie bag or treat, esp at a 1 year old's party.

I agree, and I think that would be a nice and cheap solution. It's the thought that counts, after all, and yes, she'll probably not expect to get anything at all, so it'd be a cute surprise.

Otherwise, OP, I was going to suggest giving the teen the same bag, just for fun, maybe with an added sweet.

I am just shy of 32 and I still like ice cream. :)

I dislike goody bags on principle, so that's not "in" it's "instead of". But really, if you want the truth (and nobody ever does), I say that the children already had a party and cake, so they don't need presents as well. They'll get theirs on their own birthday.

And I don't think a five dollar or ten dollar gift card is that exorbitant when it's the only one you're giving.

What is the deal with goody bags?! I don't remember them from "back in the day."

I remember goody bags from my childhood 20 years ago but we're talking a handful of candy and a pencil. My sister is 13 and some of the stuff she's received is absurd (personalized monogrammed bathrobe, anyone?).

O_O What. What friends does she have?

I also remember goodie bags only from a carnival party, where at the end, at goodbye, every kid got a paper bag with a few sweets and a polaroid picture taken during the the day. I also think goodie bags are not necessary at all, but because they are rather rare, it can be nice to give one as a surprise, especially if it's the kids' first party or something.

Otherwise I agree that, with all the party and possibly cake etc., a goodie bag is not necessary, except for maybe giving them something to remember the day (i.e. a card with a picture).

She goes to a private school where a lot of the parents seem to feel they have a lot to prove, so to be fair it's quite different from my lower-middle-class upbringing.

I wouldn't give a goody bag if you are on a budget and have an age range that wide. Most parents will be glad not to have the extra anyway. ;)

I fear my kid getting goody bags when the time comes...

We are having a party this weekend for my daughter's first birthday. There will be two babies under 1 year, a 1.5 year old, a 4 yr old, a 9 year old, and an 11 year old. We weren't planning on goody bags for any of them...
Hope they don't get upset! Maybe we'll pick up something small for the 4 yr old, but I'd be shocked if any of the others understood or cared.

My youngest turned one in July. I was on a budget, so I tied a chocolate lolly (I make my own, but you can buy them cheaply too) to a helium balloon and called it a day. No one complained.

I don't have any suggestions for goodies, but I would NOT give one to the 17 year old if you aren't giving them to the adults. I would bet she identifies more with the adults and would feel kind of bad if she got a goody bag meant for kids.

That's a big range. I would skip the 17 year old and send each kid with a nice mylar helium balloon instead. Or a big cookie or sucker in the party's theme.

Ohh, that's a nice idea! (Also for the parents who won't have more stuff to lug home). Actually, my son only got helium balloons for his first birthday, but not the metal kind, the normal ones that you can inflate with a helium bottle (around 100 floating under the ceiling). What we had leftover we gave to a kindergarten, and the kids were hyped.

I would give a cookie or something along those lines that matches the party's theme in a clear bag and call it a day.

Me and my son just attended a one year old's party for my best friend's kid. There were kids ages 1-preteen there. She just made bags with a little candy, some little weird toys and a crazy straw. All the kids were more than happy and were able to find something in the bad they messed around with. Even big kids like to play with little stuff once in a while. Usually party favors in the party section are good for a wide range of kids.

I put out a big bowl of candy, some small toys (you can get ones for different age appropriateness) and some stickers and left bags next to it. People could take what they wanted and leave what they didn't.

I guess I just think that if you're already feeding them, there's no need for goody bags. But, then I think the goody bag practice is pretty goofy in general.

I feel like goody bags are pretty common! I am 26 and every party I can ever remember going to had a goody bag at the end. And every party I've been to since with my kids has had some sort of take-home thing.
My favorite was a craft the kids all made when they came in - it was fun for the kids and was cute, too. Not candy and other little plastic things that just get underfoot and go in the trash. Or pictures that were taken at the party. Those were adorable!
I think you're in luck, especially with christmas right around the corner - you could just pop over to your local party store and they have tons of little stocking stuffer-y things that would go well in a goody bag, for really really cheap.
Good luck!

oh I forgot - I would skip goody bags for 17 year old and the 3 tiny babies. Send home a balloon or something instead!

I don't normally give out party bags if it's a majority-adult/family party, only when they start inviting their little friends from preschool/school.
If you want to give something I really like the balloon idea. Given the large age range of the kids, maybe print out some printable colouring pages in various themes and wrap them around a little pack of pencils/crayons with a rubber band. Leave them on a table or something so the kids can colour at the party if they get bored, or take them home.

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