Kids’ Birthday Parties: Eco-Green versus Eco-Cheap?

May 16th, 2009

Kids’ birthday parties always seem to pose a dilemma, whether you’re hosting them or attending them. These days, parents send out invites with everything from “Amazon Wish Lists” to “Please No Gifts” directives.

It’s Saturday today, which means I’ve got plenty of company as parents everywhere negotiate party drop-off times and gifts.

After my 4th cup of latte this morning, it occurred to me that Big Boy didn’t have a present to bring to his first grade classmate’s Pokemon Birthday Party this afternoon.

“No problem!” exclaimed Big Boy.

He disappeared into his room, reappearing several minutes later with two Pokemon cards.


“I’ll give him these! Two of my Pokemon cards!”

At our house, we treasure the concept of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Obviously, Big Boy has this down pat. But what about the Birthday Boy and his family?

Immediately I wondered… will we look cheap? Is this strange to bring old Pokemon cards to a party? Or is this a great opportunity to put our core beliefs into practice? Is this a gift from the heart? Is Big Boy really parting with a cherished Pokemon card, or is he simply passing along something that doesn’t have a good HP?

On the flip side, if I insist that we buy a new present, what does that teach my son? I can imagine my words coming back to haunt me through Big Boy. “Well, Mama, if we have to drive to get a present for him, that’s not really eco-green is it? Because then you’re wasting gas, and that’s not eco-green, is it? Huh? HUH?”

So…here we go….here’s hoping the birthday boy’s family cherishes the 3Rs too….or can put up with some slightly strange new friends!

What’s been your experience with the whole birthday party dance?

Leave a comment and share!

— Lynn

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