Brenna gets invited to a lot of birthday parties so I'm always trying to find gifts that cost less than about seven or eight dollars. Less than five - even better. Sometimes we hit up Five Below, especially when the birthday kid is a boy. But sometimes we just don't have time to go shopping. In the past, I'd stock up on art supplies during the August school sales. Then we'd put together a grab bag type gift with a mix of items like paper, pens, envelopes, markers, erasers, stamps, notepads, etc. Last year, though, for some reason I either missed the sales or they just weren't that good. We didn't add much to our gift box. That's left us scrambling on occasion.
We still don't have a great standard gift for the boys. But when Brenna gets invited to a girl's party, we've started making a fun pillowcase for her to give. And when I say "we", I mean both of us.
I taught her how to sew the straight edges of the case. She's much more excited about the gift that way, she's pretty good at it too. I found the pattern on JoAnns.com - where they have tons of free project ideas. Instead of buying fabric for the actual case part, I use a sheet. I can get four pillowcases out of one twin sheet. $9 at Target. For the fancy, fun cuff, we either buy something new or choose colors from my scraps and leftovers collection. It takes one piece that's 11x40 inches and a matching color that's 3x40 inches. From start to finish, they take less than an hour to create.
It would take me that long to bundle everybody up, load them in the car, unload at the store, find a gift, wait in line to pay, reload the car, and get everybody back in the house.
A few weeks ago, Brenna went to a party for twin girls. One is her best friend at school so I took Brenna to JoAnn's and she picked out the cuff fabric and matching band colors. I sewed the tops together while she was at school and she finished them when she got home.
We thought they came out pretty well!
I do wonder, though, what do the rest of you do for birthday gifts? Any easy, quick ideas?