It’s your kid’s birthday. You throw them a party, play games, eat cake and open presents. All. Those. Presents. Thousands of little pieces of plastic in the form of train tracks, race cars, dolls, balls…you totally know what I am talking about. Ninety percent of the gifts they get, they don't even really need (or want) and probably already has in one form or another. But you let them keep all the presents because it would be mean to return them, right? So they just clutter up your playroom, break into a million pieces and end up in the trash or being given away.
But imagine a world where all those little, individual gifts didn’t exist, and instead, each guest would just hand you an envelope with a small monetary contribution toward a big gift. Well, apparently in Australia it is an actual thing, and it’s called a “fiver party.”
Down Under writer Lana Hallowes details one of these parties she was invited to on Babyology, and claims that the trend sweeping her nation is nothing short of “gosh-darn genius.” Basically, everyone wins with the “fiver party” as the parents of the party guests don’t have to stress out about buying a gift and parents of the birthday kid don’t have to deal with all the gifts. Instead, each kids brings a $5 bill (or whatever monetary value you want to put on it) and all of the money goes toward a big ticket present the parents have bought and that the kids actually wants and needs.
She lists many reasons why this is such a great concept, including that it is easy on parents, budget-friendly, removes expectations of “stuff” from birthdays and teaches children good values, that it is environmentally friendly, cuts down on toy clutter and that the kids gets something they really, really want.
But does it take away the fun of birthdays and presents? “Well, it’s all in how it’s presented to the child,” she writes. “If your child is aware of the ‘big ticket’ present coming their way and understands that everyone coming to her party will be gifting it to her, instead of bringing an individual present, then you will manage her expectations while also fueling her excitement about the ‘big gift’.”
If you want to have a “fiver party” for your child, simply mention it on the invitation and explain the situation and maybe even specify the big ticket gift he or she wants. Then, you can either present it to the birthday boy or girl at the party for everyone to see, or wait until the party is over.
While some people probably won't be into this idea, we think it is truly amazing!