The birthday boy didn’t even realize that he’d get presents!  Three-year-olds are refreshingly easy to please when it comes to things like birthdays.  We were lucky enough to plan our “baby’s” party for a perfect fall afternoon.  No need for a lot of games or food on a day like that.  We kept it pretty simple, and everyone seemed to have a nice time.

Always look for the good, and learn to be satisfied in simple things.  You’ll appreciate the simplicity of life even more than the money you’ll save.  Just another lesson we’re learning in our #yearofno.

Thirsty for even more savings?  Check out the whole series here.

But it’s frugal Friday, and we’re all here to talk about our wins this week.  Let’s dig into the…

5 Ways We’ve Saved Money This Week

5 Ways We've Saved Money This Week. A whole series of posts on how this family saved money. Get tons of frugal tips, including how to save on birthday parties and afford fun family traditions.

 

Coupon for the win!

Always, always ask about coupons.  This time we took our family to our favorite pumpkin patch.  I love going there, because they charge a reasonable flat rate for entry.  Then you don’t have to pay for each thing that the kids want to do.

Unfortunately, when you have a medium sized family (for us, that’s 7 people) even a reasonable rate adds up quickly.  Happily, the nice lady at the check out found us a coupon that saved us $14.  That’s a significant savings!

Yes, we could have #yearofno’ed this entire trip.  But family traditions are important to us, so we looked for other ways to save.

One Pumpkin

One way we saved was by choosing only one pumpkin to carve this year.  Often I’ll let each child pick a pumpkin or gourd and we will carve a few.

We saved a lot of money by only buying one.  We also learned the fine art of compromise.  People do tend to prefer one size and shape of pumpkin over another, don’t they?

(Pop over to Facebook and vote on the pumpkin you’d most likely carve.)

 

Ate at Home

Traditionally, after we visit the pumpkin patch we eat out for supper.  The pumpkin patch is a far trip from home, so this is always tempting.  However, I knew we had to keep costs down this year.

I packed water bottles and a bag of chips.  We snacked on the way home.  And once we got back, we ate the yummy chicken meal that Hubby had put in the crock pot before we left.

Party Game

My kids love having pinatas at their birthday parties.  But they can be expensive, both in buying the pinata itself and filling it with candy.

Enter our simplified version.  We did a fun punch game instead.  Using solo cups and a trifold we’d already used for 3 different school projects, I was able to put together a punch game board.  This was great for the younger kids at the party.

Punch game

Use hot glue on the bottom of your cups. Some cups also needed some super glue.

Place the cups strategically on your board or poster. This was a trifold heavy poster that I covered with wrapping paper. Use books to hold them down while they dry.

Place the cups strategically on your board or poster. This was a trifold heavy poster that I covered with wrapping paper. Use books to hold them down while they dry.

Fill the cups with a few treats. Cut tissue paper in squares and rubber band the tissue around the top of the cup.

Fill the cups with a few treats. Cut tissue paper in squares and rubber band the tissue around the top of the cup.

Play the game! The birthday boy didn't really "get" it. I helped other little ones by poking a small hole in the one they chose so they could rip the tissue and find their prize.

Play the game! The birthday boy didn’t really “get” it. I helped other little ones by poking a small hole in the one they chose so they could rip the tissue and find their prize.

Minimized Treat Bags

Are there parents out there that enjoy treat bags?  A sack of candy and small toys is usually just another thing to throw onto the pile of too much stuff at home.

I simplified by putting a bag of fruit snacks and a couple of pieces of candy into bags.  The kids added whatever they’d won in the punch game, and we called that good enough.

Those are the 5 ways we saved money this week.

Up next, we’re looking forward to a simple Halloween weekend.  Hope you have a fun one!

Looking for an easy way to save?  I’ve been using Ibotta.  I like the extra savings on things I found a great deal on.  I love saving on things like milk and produce (since it’s tough to find coupons for those things!).  If you’ve got a smartphone, grab the app using my referral link to start off with $10.