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Jackson at his 12th birthday with this fun Oreo Cake
Our son turns 13 this week (meaning I'm officially old. . . ) and I'm trying to come up with some fun party favors and decorations and for he and his guests. I searched Pinterest (you know, the place that's supposed to have ideas for everything???) and there's have NOTHING. (Seriously, type in tea party and you get a jillion ideas, but apparently 13 year olds are too old for fun stuff. Ugh.)
Do you have any clever ideas for party favors or decorations that you've used for older kids (specifically, boys?) I'd love to hear them, as I'm thinking all the money I saved on Sweet Reagan's Tea Party will quickly be spent ushering this kiddo into his teen years. Thanks in advance for any ideas . . . I'm looking forwards to them!
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I think a good favor for tweens would be pop rocks candy, microwave popcorn and a Gatorade or other sports drinks. Maybe even some slim jims. girls can get hand sanitizer, fingernail polish and lip gloss. I think once kids hit 13 favors are a thing of the pass. I hope this helps for next year.
Water bottle filled with candy.
Mary Ann says
For my son's 5th birthday I skipped the "throw away junk" and opted for Lego Mini Figures. They're about 3$ a piece and come in their own bags. I tied a ribbon to them and handed them out in lieu of goodie bags. I think the parents and kids appreciated something they could play with that wasn't throw away type stuff like erasers, bouncy balls, tattoos etc.
Loved all the ideas and can’t wait to see how it all turned out!! Laurie, I totally agree about the Pinterest thing – daughter just turned 13 and I was unable to find anything for a 13 yo birthday party. Thankfully girls are a little easier than the guys when it comes to theme parties!! However, the guys don’t seem to cost as much! unless you have some crazy OCD mom that tends to go overboard! (not me!) Loved your tip on making a list and sticking to it!!! We’ll be waiting for Jackson’s b’day pics! Have fun.
My nephew Zack turned 14 and he had a glow in the dark themed party with black lights, glow sticks, glow necklaces/bracelets/rings, etc. We handed out white t-shirts with highlighters and everyone could decorate their own shirt/skin with highlighters that glow under the black lights. My sister went over the top and even ordered light up shirts from flashionstatement.com that literally lit up to the beat of the music. Zack had a blast and all the kids really loved the theme.
sheila robertson says
Cracker jacks and peanuts would also be great for goodie bags and not cost an arm and leg.
Rent out the gym for dodgeball/cone sweep like we did for Chase. Jackson was there. It’s cheap and the boys had so much fun!
You know, Laurie, if he’s into baseball, check your Enjoy the City books. They have coupons for one free admission to the Huntsville Stars. Even if you don’t do it on his birthday, it would be a special day to ask a few friends to go and give each a free ticket. I know you bought several of the Enjoy the City books! Offer to buy one hot dog and a drink for each friend. (They can always bring their own money for more food!) This would make a great outing for Dad and son. Sort of a guys night out. Maybe even invite friends and their dads. Good luck with the party!
Check this out cute idea for football party. Could get good deals and do it cheap.
Dee Wolters says
I would plan the party based on his interests. And boys are much less fussy about food and decorations- pizza or hot dogs are usually a big hit. Also, they tend to be super excited about flaming hot cheetos or Nacho Cheese Doritos. And soft drinks! I would just ask him what he and the buddies want and let them do it, even if it seems really simple like: play basketball, have a bon fire, or go fishing. Boys are just differnt and don’t like all the fussy things girls like. enjoy the simplicity
Definitely need to remember that Dee! He came up with a few ideas tonight = we’re going to gift bags including:
Big League Chew 🙂
RC Colas in bottles (if I can find them!)
He loved the idea, and is excited about playing football with his friends too! 🙂
You know, I just thought of something…If I remember correctly you have mentioned that Jackson is a sports fan. If he wants to invite a big group of friends or if you have a lot of family that will attend also, you could organize a baseball/softball game. As he and his friends get older, they could make it an annual tradition to get together for a game on Jackson’s birthday. Throw some hotdogs on the grill, open a bag of potato chips, and there you have a super simple, easy on the wallet, good time.
We’re actually doing football and basketball, Angela! 🙂 The hardest part though is what to send the kids home with….. I don’t want to be too much the penny pincher, but at 13 it seems hard to impress those kids! Love the idea of a tradition of it though ~ he actually has done it several years and is looking forward to it this year too (praying for good weather!)
Laurie, not sure how many boys are attending but a friend of ours bought inexpensive white T’s and early in the party took a group pic of the boys, a friend printed them out onto transfer paper while another ironed them during the party…at the end they all were given a shirt.
Love that idea Cindy – thanks so much for sharing!
My son will be 19 soon (talk about officially feeling old!). He has outgrown parties now, but some of the things we did in the past include laser tag, paintball, go-carting – all followed by pizza. I know, these things aren’t necessarily penny-pinched ideas, but at some point the boys outgrow party favors and party games, so the money I didn’t spend on these items was spent on taking them to play laser tag, paintball, ride go-carts, play video games at the local arcade (for us it is Dave and Busters!). At a certain age, they like to go to the movies alone – OR what they perceive as being alone (parents follow them in at a distant and sit a few rows back). One thing that we did to limit our costs was cut down on the number of guests.
If you want a penny pinched idea – the Nerf guns sound fun. You could even bill it as “The Nerf Games” or “Nerf War”. Have your husband set up some clever obstacles in the backyard like they do for paintball and let the boys go crazy – divide them up into teams or compete individually, no matter because they will have a blast. Again – send your husband to Little Cesar’s for $5 pepperoni pizza – no ordering required! Then again, if your hubby is anything like mine, he will be too busy playing with the boys to go, so maybe you should just plan on going! hehe 🙂
Love the obstacles idea~ and my Little Caesar’s coupons are clipped already!!! 🙂
Nerf guns or marshmallow guns – they could use them during the party and then each guest can take one home afterwards. (Add nerf darts or small bag of marshmallows too.)
I like the baseball themed party idea. Favors like you mentioned: Cokes, Big League Gum, baseball cards, maybe even a baseball.
Movie theme – take kids to see a movie, buy popcorn. Favors could be a free rental from Redbox, a bag of micro-popcorn, a couple of sodas, and a box of candy.
Pool party – diving toys and a towel as favors
My son is turning 10, but he is still very much into Legos. So lego party, and each kid will get a small lego kit.
Cute! We did the marshmallow guns a few years ago, but I might pull those supplies back out again! You know, it would be fun to do a party where they built something too… great tips!
Oops! I meant to say you are never too old for pinatas! I have 4 kids and my brain doesn’t work very well anymore! Good luck!
Definitely never too old for pinatas! 🙂
Kailin @ Logs and Thoughts says
My 14-year-old (girl) cousin just had a bunch of her middle-school-aged friends (boys and girls) over, and they played with sidewalk chalk all over the street and driveway (because we don’t have sidewalks around here), had a campfire, and roasted GIANT marshmallows. Not a birthday party, but fun and simple.
Great tips Kailin…. giant marshmallows would go far with these boys! 🙂
My son is a huge Doctor Who fan. We had dry ice, black balloons, and other outer space themed things. I had set up a basket on our deck filled with silly string and nerf guns. My son and his friends ran around the back yard shooting each other. They thought it was great. We even had a pinata. Your never too young for those!
Cute ideas Gina – thanks so much for sharing!
Jennifer G. says
My oldest is only 8, but maybe giant Hershey’s bars for the favor? Or Big League Chew packets with a pack of baseball cards?
Great ideas … thanks so much everyone! (I had been thinking about the old bottled Coca Colas, and adding the gum and baseball cards would be perfect!)
Check out http://celebrationsathomeblog.com. They have some amazing parties! Their boy’s baseball party looks awesome!
As a mother of three boys I found that you need to keep it simple at this age. Balls (football, soccer, basketball..), video games, if the weather is warm water balls. provide lots of time to run around and just hang out. Keep the food simple – pizza, chips, drinks.
My 13 yr old son still loves nerf guns. He just went to a nerf party where everyone brought nerf guns and they had a blast. Pizza and drinks make all boys happy. The weather is great for this to be an outdoor activity.
My 11 year old son is a Minecraft fan. I had the kids make their own party favors. We spray painted t-shirts with the minecraft face on it. The kids loved it. I also spray painted brown bags with the minecraft face. I filled the bags with Christmas lights to make them glow and placed them around the house. Jo-anns or Menards usually have t-shirts for a few dollars and spray paint can be found for around a dollar.
Love the Zombie Plant Party favor!
this was a great idea my son is turning 13 and he loves minecraft.