5 Themed Kids' Birthday Parties on a Budget



Turning a basic birthday party into a fiesta is a sizzling recipe for fun. Decorations could play off the red, green and white of the Mexican flag, or you could choose your own festive palette. You may be able to find plastic sombreros at a party supply outlet, but it could be worth your while to save money on costumes and put it into delicious fiesta food. Set up a taco or nacho bar with ground beef, onions, salsas, cheese and veggies. Or try out the Taco Pizza recipe at TLC Cooking. For drinks, you could serve limeade slushies, similar to nonalcoholic margaritas. A lot of grocery stores now sell a variety of Tex-Mex food products and candies that could be fun for kids to nibble on.

Craft time for younger children could involve making maracas out of decorated plastic bottles and beads. Once everyone's finished, turn on some music, have the guests grab their maracas and dance in a conga line. Older kids may prefer decorating and filling miniature piñatas. Since the papier-mache takes a day or two to dry out, you'll need to prep those beforehand. Afterward, string up the piñatasand allow the guests to knock them open.