Sunday, November 23, 2014

Party on a Budget

My Baby Crunch turned 1 a couple weeks ago.
We wanted to have a small party, but that isn't really an option for us because of the size of our families (I'm the oldest of 8 and Hubby Crunch is the third of 9, That doesn't include our parents, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephew, cousins, grandparents, etc.)
My next best option was to figure out how to throw a party on a budget. Where else would I go but Pinterest?
We decided on serving a Taco Bar. Small amounts of each ingredient (specifically the expensive ones), but plenty of variety for everyone! 


Flour Tortillas*
Tostadas (Corn tortillas, fried flat)
Tortilla Chips

Taco Seasoned Ground Beef
Shredded Salsa Chicken

Other Fillers
Refried Black Beans
Refried Pinto Beans
Spanish Rice

Diced Onions
Diced Tomatoes
Sliced Black Olives*
Shredded Lettuce
Chopped Jalepenos
"Mexican Blend" of Shredded Cheeses (Monterey Jack, Colby Jack, and Mild Cheddar)

Mexican Corn Salsa (we also added black beans)
Liz's Homemade Salsa (adapted from this recipe)

More Sauces
Mild Taco Bell Sauce*
Hot Taco Bell Sauce*
Sour Cream

*We bought these items rather than making/slicing/prepping/dicing/etc ourselves. We also bought the corn tortillas in order to make the Tostadas and Chips.
I don't know why I angled the picture like this...
I probably thought it would be artsy....
Next were decorations. The theme was Little Bunny Foo Foo (Baby's favorite song). I wanted to get that theme across without breaking the bank. So we made lots of things ourselves.
I hand-wrote all the food signs, I wrapped green utensils in orange napkins to look like carrots,
my sister glued cotton balls to plastic cups and drew faces to make bunnies, several of my siblings drew faces and tails on balloons to make field mice, we put gerber daisies in limes (you can see them hiding in several pictures) and Baby Crunch wore her bunny tutu!

I think my very favorite themed item was the cupcakes. We made bunnies on top of carrot cake and field mice on top of vanilla funfetti cake. Confession though, I used boxed cake mix and premade frosting. I wish I had gotten better pictures, but my phone went MIA, so we made do with what we could. They were so adorable!! Thanks to Pinterest and Google images for the inspiration.
For the bunny ears, I cut a marshmallow in half diagonally and dipped the cut side in sprinkles. The mouse body is a maraschino cherry (stem on) dipped in chocolate and stuck to a Hershey Kiss head, with almond sliver ears.

There ended up being just over 30 teens and adults and around a dozen kids and toddlers at the party. We had plenty of food for everyone, plus leftovers of some things. It was a lot of fun and hardly stressful at all!

I will be posting a full cost breakdown as soon as I can for those who are interested.

Chime in! What is your favorite way to party on a budget?

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