Monday, June 10, 2013

My Daughter's 4th Birthday - A 5000 Peso Achievement! :)

The saying 'time flies' is not enough to encompass just how quick kids grow. I still remember how my little darling was just a babe I cradle in my arms while she sleeps like a little angel - now, I can't cradle her in my arms to get her to sleep, she's far too heavy for that and she doesn't want to be 'babied' anymore. :(

But, no matter how much of a 'big girl' she already feels, I'm still going to throw parties for her for as long as she wants them. They may not always be as grand or as 'pretty' as Mommy dreams them to be, but one thing's for sure, I'll always try to make them memorable.

This year, we were working on a very tight budget, and very little time. We were at odds on whether to throw a party or just go somewhere, and of course money matters weren't helping in making an early decision. So, what happened was we had to prepare a party in two days - two very short days for a DIY party at home!

You'd think it was easy - I mean we're just inviting close family and neighbors right? Eeeeee - wrong. Given that this mom/kiddiepartyholic is such a party daydreamer, I couldn't help but feel the need to inject some creativity through DIY projects. And did I say we were working on a budget of more or less 5000 pesos (Philippine pesos, that's roughly $120)?

It wasn't an easy feat - to fit all party needs into that little amount - and we were estimating having about 30 or so guests for merienda/dinner.

But guess what? We made it happen! Ohhhh yes we did! Here's the breakdown of how much we spent on each party category and how it all came together:


Menu: Spaghetti, Pansit, Pork Hamonado, Fried Chicken, Rice 
Appetizers/Snacks: French fries 
Dessert: Buko Pandan, Pichi-Pichi, and Donuts for the kids
Drink: Four Seasons Cooler
Cost --- 3000 PESOS
Rating: Of course a perfect 10! :) Love your own!
We were lucky to have in the family a super cook in the person of my mom-in-law. Hubby's family/clan loves family gatherings, and food is always a part of it, so my MIL is a true expert in estimating the amount of food to be consumed by a certain number of people. And of course, her food always tastes delicious and never fails to impress guests. So how did we get to get all that food served at 3000 pesos? Number one thing: we got the ingredients from the local public market. And not just the fresh stuff, even the grocery items like spaghetti sauce - even the french fries (which was only 150 for 2 kilos)! Price are at the lowest about five to ten pesos less per item and even per kilo (even more for some items). And of course it also helps that MIL already has suki so she gets to haggle too - that's something you really can't do in supermarkets! :)
The cutie donuts we had are a contribution of my mom, so we got that for free. Hehe. All the food was cooked on the day itself (Sunday, May 12), but the chicken was marinated the night before so it was really packed with flavor when fried.

And with that little budget we had for food, we were able to produce enough to feed more than 30 people, and send them off with take-home packs! And no, it wasn't a 'managed' buffet. :)

Barbie Pink and Black Cake  (8"round) and Two Dozen Cupcakes by: Cupcake Babies by Dyann
 (cupcakes were moist chocolate and red velvet)
Cost: 1410 pesos
Rating: 9.5 stars

If there was one party item I was able to prepare for, it was the cake. What I had in mind was that whatever our decision would be (party or no party) at least my daughter would have a special cake. :) So sometime April, I already messaged sis Dyann of Cupcake Babies by Dyann, whose cakes were the most affordable I could find that was near my area. Good thing she can also do customized designs (simple cakes and cupcakes too), and had good feedback from those who have already ordered from her.

The verdict? Aside from a teeny difference in the design peg that I sent her from the actual output, it was perfect, and not to mention very yummy too! We gave away the cupcakes to the guests, and the red velvet ones were the first to go. Hehe. We kept the cake for our consumption, and we had it as our sweet ending dessert/coffee buddy for about three days (and it was still moist and soft even on the third day after the party). Sis Dyann, who's an SP mom, is also very easy to talk to and super nice. :)

Mini dessert table backdrop: DIY by me
Balloon decor: arrangement by hubby. Balloons sourced from Kyla Mae and Celebrations Party Central
Pink crown metal buckets: Celebrations Party Central 
Cost: 590 (more or less)

Ok, this was the most tasking part - the DIY decors! Last year, I had like a month to conceptualize, design, and create the DIY items. This year, I had two days! I had to keep my head focused on simpler concepts and layout, and had to map out a 'look' I could easily pull off.

The color choices I made are partly influenced by my little girl. She wanted pink there somewhere, so she got it, and I instantly thought pairing it with black will make instant visual impact and would tie in with a Princess/Barbie-ish look. I made the cupcake toppers, and the paper medallions, as well as the buntings from sticker paper and cartolina paper. They were really affordable materials. My biggest mistake though was using crepe paper as a backdrop. It would work I guess on its own, but it did definitely didn't hold other decor well. So if you plan to stick the paper medallions on the wall, do not use crepe paper as a backdrop. :) There are more ideas on backdrops on this blog post.

I super super enjoyed my trip to Celebrations Party Central in their Alabang branch. I didn't get to buy much since I had a miniscule budget for the decor, but it was all eye candy for this kiddiepartyholic. They literally have everything you'd need to pull of an instant party. The polka dot balloons were from them as well as the super cutesy princess-themed metal buckets.

The cupcake tower was something I got on sale from Happy Cakerista, which by the way sells baking stuff at a really reasonable price. I had a really pleasant transaction with them. Note: it pays to be on the lookout for sales on party stuff. :)

Here are some more photos of the decors we put up at home:

Balloon arrangements are by hubby, the rest of the DIYs are by yours truly. :)

My K blowing her birthday candle, and the simple decor on our mini-dessert table. :)

After the party, my little K thanked me for such a wonderful day. It was her idea after all, to hold a special little event with balloons and cake. And no matter how simple or how 'rushed' her little party was, the smile on her face is priceless, like we gave her the grandest one ever. :)


  1. Kudos! My daughter's birthday is coming up and I am not sure I can shell out a lot for her party either. This helped a lot so a big THANKS! :D

  2. ohmygosh tin, your tiyaga and resourcefulness just blows me away. supermom ka talaga! :)

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  6. perfect! whatta a lucky daughter you have for having a diy parents like you guys! kudos!