I must say, with 10 kids in the house you would think we were the noisiest house around. Except we were not!! Our household was very quiet and everyone stayed well behaved!! If any problems were starting, Chris re-directed everyone to a new task.
I’m super happy Julia got to experience her own party with friends. Much different environment from school.
So how did we do with zero waste?
For her Birthday she got some much needed pants and a couple tops. Not second hand, as I did not time my shopping around to do that. (A new habit to form still). She also got a couple treats from Bulk Barn, no plastic packaging. A new book as well, An Elephant and Piggy. It was a Bulk purchase 1 book with 5 stories. If I bought 5 single books it would have been about $50.00. I got this one for $20.00. It will be a great help for Julia when she starts to read on her own, and it is hilarious!
We used gift bags we already had. No tissue paper, so I just used a dish towel to cover the gift in the bag.
Decorations were coloured construction paper, cut in a single stroke in a circular motion, to make twirly streamers. I already had paper fans made from previous parties. All these put together and up with my homemade glue: mix together 1 Tbsp each if corn starch and flour with 25 ml cold water. Add 100 ml boiling water and mix. Your is good to go and should last a few days. The smell will tell you when its done! Even the Happy Birthday banners were put up with glue, no tape required.
I did not have time to make a cake, so I bought an Ice cream one. The container will be reused for home baked goods and even bread rolls or bagels. My bread box is not big enough to hold what I bake for bread/subs, nor the extra I get without packaging at the grocery store bakery. A good alternative.
For the party, I continued with the homemade streamers. I set out crackers and cheese. Strawberries halved, blueberries and grapes. Cashews and Almonds and some juice. Cashews, almonds and grapes were package free. (I just take a bunch of grapes so from a bag at the store and put it in my cloth produce bag. This way I get the amount I want and no plastic!). The juice come from cans. I believe cans have a higher recycling rate than plastic juice bottles. (We buy minute Maid Apple Juice, Five Alive and Fruitopia).
I did not tell the guest’s parents we were a zero waste family. I did not feel comfortable to say that about gifts they may or not bring. I’m not sure how to put it exactly . . . Yet. For the invitations, I just used some card stock that was on hand, and wrote the party details. Simple yet effective.
We did not accumulate much plastic anyways, which was great!
For a cake, again, I was pressed for time, bought one from the store. I will also be reusing the cake tray. (If you put the cake tray upside down, after the cake is gone of course, haha, it makes a great dish with a cover. A layer of peanut butter on the glue under the label, let it sit 12 hours or so, and it should wash off with warm soapy water. No sticky dish this way. Works great on jars too, like spaghetti and salsa jars!
We used our own dishes and utensils for everyone. After lunch, I just washed the plates for reuse at cake time. No big deal at all. After the kids are lunch, they got to go play for 5 minutes while we washed the plates and got the cake ready. No rush!
All in all, not a zero waste party 100%, but I did my best for the time. Next party will be in March. Daniel turns 10!