A spring themed birthday party- turning 5, A new season of life


(Everything you see, we bought with our own money – nothing was sponsored or gifted). This post contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.


The best part, and maybe the biggest gamble, of our daughter’s birthday is that it is a week into spring. It’s finally starting to show signs of winter winding down, and if we are lucky, warmer sunny days! She has always requested cheery birthday themes; her third was sunshine, fourth was unicorns and rainbows, and this year she chose Spring!! A spring themed birthday party! Maybe she does this to appease me, but she has successfully avoided asking for cliche birthday themes like say… Frozen. Which… there’s no shame in that I was honestly expecting it and was totally up for the challenge. But alas she went with “spring” and I love the way it turned out! It was also a nod to the fact that she is leaving toddler-hood (?) and entering big kid ages. A new season of life, oh my heart.

If you are new here, let me just introduce myself by saying that as well as loving a good party theme, planning, design, I love the challenge of trying to make it all come to life for as little money as possible. So lets dive in to how we made a spring themed birthday party happen for our five year old!

A spring themed birthday party - invitation

Invitations

As a graphic designer, first and foremost, the first part of party planning might be my favorite part, the invitation! I tell my wedding clients this all the time, your invite it the first impression of your big day. And in this case, the big day was a 5 year old’s birthday party: woo! I wanted the invite to scream “spring!” without being tacky. I like to think they ended up looking more like a fancy tea party than a kids birthday party. I had the birthday girl feel more included and excited about this part of her party by water-coloring envelopes with me. I’d like to think that all the recipients smiled as they found their mail art amongst their pile of lame adult mail.

Decorations

Balloons: One of the best budget friendly birthday traditions that make a big impact on just a few dollars.. balloons! Specifically balloon arches. I almost always start with this as soon as we have a theme nailed down. The biggest star of the birthday show just cost me $10 and I spread those balloons everywhere to really make an impact. I especially loved the daisy balloons that came with this set and I can deflate them and reuse them another time.

Flowers: This may have been my favorite part of the whole spring themed party idea. Knowing I can buy something that is not only inexpensive but pretty and will bring me a little bit of springtime joy for the next week or so. Trader Joe’s is always my go-to for bulk flowers to make my own arrangements. Four vases of arrangements ended up costing just $17. But pro-tip.. when you want a pick-me-up in the form of flowers, check your flower section at your local grocery store in their discount bin. Plenty of times I have come home with flowers for $.50-$3.00 that are the perfect pick me up for the week. This is especially true after Easter, Mothers Day, and Valentines day.

Pinata:

My daughter and I went back and fourth on what a spring pinata would look like. The obvious answer was a flower. Then we thought maybe a bee. So a quick search led me to realize that these things average $25-$30 just for the thing you are going to smash to pieces. Enter Hobby Lobby. They sell their pinatas for $10, okay, now that is a price point I can get behind. We found a cutie white llama and decided that I could take this festive and tacky llama and turn him, or her, into a beautiful spring llama. She went from basic to posh real quick by hot gluing some faux flowers in a crown and necklace.

Cake:

Weeks before her party, I would take time to sit with my daughter and ask about these details. What theme she wants, who she wants to invite, and what flavor cake she would want. This year, her answer was a very enthusiastic “Chocolate!!”. I was on the hunt for spring themed chocolate cake inspiration and to pinterest I went. I scrolled cakes with my daughter by my side and she would tell me which ones she liked. Basically we ended up with an iced chocolate cake with flowers on top, easy! I could have baked her a cake and done all this the hard way.. but why? After some looking at bakeries around, of course it was costco that ended up having the cheapest cake for the serving size, huge.. for $16. And in the same trip we picked up these rainbow macarons and they ended up being the most perfect finishing touch to both the cake and the food spread. And bonus points for being naturally dyed! The day of the party, I took out the cake and let the frosting warm up a tiny bit so it was spreadable. Swirl it around a couple of times and viola! I could easily have told people I had this cake custom made, but here I am, giving away my not so secret secrets! IF you love baking, bake the cake! But for me, I’ll let someone else take that off my plate and I’ll just decorate it.

Favors:

This might be a me thing, so no judgement here. BUT. Party favors (along with dentist prizes, etc) are on my list of parts of parenthood I can’t stand. Its those cheap, plastic things that float around your house for months, you get so tired of picking it up and/or stepping on it. You throw it away and then you feel bad for the person who spent money on it and depressed that its just off to sit in a landfill for who knows how many years. Or is that just me? Well in an attempt to avoid all this and stick to the theme we bagged up some rocky mountain wildflower seeds and tied them to some wildflower honey sticks! Nothing says spring birthday like growing wildflowers all over our neighborhood! Watering cans made the perfect additions to the spring theme, and we just happened to have a few of those around!

Pass the Parcel:

In birthday’s past, I have made the mistake of not really planning an activity or game aside from cake, food, and presents. Then the party has awkward quiet moments where guests turn to the hosts wondering what they are supposed to be doing. I guess it was a sharp learning curve for me to understand little kid parties are different than just inviting people over to your house for a get together. Aside from smashing miss springtime llama, we played pass the parcel! If you don’t know what that is, there is a Bluey episode all about it (we played Lucky’s dads rules of course). Essentially its like musical chairs, but you pass the present.. or parcel.. instead. When the music stops, the person holding the present unwraps the first layer of wrapping paper. So on and so on until the box is unwrapped. The person to get to the box, gets to keep the present. Since our guests ranged from 18 months to 14 years old.. we tried to find worthwhile prizes under $10 at the end of the layers and layers of wrapping paper that would appease all ages. Like.. who doesn’t like an etch a sketch? Penny pinching tip: the dollar tree has super cute wrapping paper. Why pay more than $1 when you need all these different patterns just to be torn off for a game?

Food:

Not much to say here.. hah. Costco. Its pretty much all Costco. The Bare breaded chicken nuggets that basically taste like Chick Fil A nuggets, pre-sliced cheese tray and crackers. the cake, the macrons, and the fruit. I feel like it looks more impressive than it sounds. Make it springy by adding some flowers to the table, and baby’s breath to the top of the pineapple. I also made some sparkling raspberry lemonade which was a big hit too!

The biggest win of all, the 60 degree we scored in April. It really could go very differently because just a few days later it was freezing and snowing. I really thought for sure with being brave and proclaiming a spring birthday in early April would backfire and snow on us. So thankful!

Reviews are in and this new five year old told me this was the “best birthday ever!”

2 thoughts on “A spring themed birthday party- turning 5, A new season of life”

  1. Alright it’s settled, how do you feel about designing wedding invitations in a year or two?? In love with everything about this party but the invites were 💯💯

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