Throwing my 3yr old a zero waste + plastic free birthday party was surprisingly quite easy. I just had to be prepared and make everything from scratch. And to be honest it didn't take any more time or effort than it had to organise his previous two birthday's, which created a lot of unnecessary waste!
So here's what I did and what you can do too!
Keep it simple and set up a Facebook event!
A birthday Facebook event or text message is the easiest zero waste way to invite your guests. If they don’t have social media a simple phone call is another option. I included on the little man's event page a message saying “PLEASE ... absolutely NO presents! I know it might seem strange not bringing a present but your presence is all the little man needs”.
We recently did a major clean out of plastic toys and unnecessary stuff from our home so as you could imagine the last thing I wanted back in the house was more stuff, especially kids plastic toys!
Did it bother the little man that no one bought him presents for his birthday? Not at all. Having friends over is exciting enough. And he was too busy showing off his new $5 tip shop bike to notice no one bringing gifts! Plus he received enough gifts from his immediate family on his actual birthday to make up for it!
I didn’t buy anything new for the party and instead used what I had around the house. A washable linen table cloth I’ve reused for years, some photo frames of the little man as a baby from around the house, some wooden chopping boards from the kitchen, a few baskets from my study to hold the food on and a vase with flowers from the lounge room.
Kids hardly eat at birthday party's as they're too busy having fun, so I didn't go overboard!
I did our zero waste food shop the day before the party. I took my own containers for the feta and olives at the deli section of Coles and three glass containers to the local butcher for the sausages and mince.
To start with:
The kids food table was loaded up with 3 wooden chopping boards of:
- Date, coconut + cacao bliss balls
- Watermelon, orange slices + pineapple
- Coconut oil + cacao rice puff crackles
- Homemade Hummus
- Homemade Smashed avocado dip
- Carrot + Cucumber dippers
- Baguette olive + sea salt crackers
(* crackers - slice sourdough bread into bite size pieces, drizzle with olive oil and seat salt and heat in oven until crispy!)
We made fresh slow pressed apple + orange juice which was poured from a glass canister I borrowed from my mum! We used all our own stainless steel and bamboo cups and straws. And all the juicing pulp and fruit platter scraps were collected in two large bags and dropped off to a family in our street who have chickens, guinea pigs and rabbits.
The party started at 4pm, so after a few nibbles we lit up the BBQ and fire pit and most our guests stayed for dinner.
We kept dinner simple. Sausages on the barbie, homemade meatballs in the oven, two vegan potato bakes made the day before, a super sized green salad and freshly sliced sourdough with butter for the sausages.
We managed to buy the perfect amount of food because we knew exactly how many guests were coming and had very little leftovers.
Of course after dinner there was birthday cake. I made the most delicious rich chocolate paleo cake and iced it with a simple fav - AYAM coconut cream (placed in fridge for 4hrs or until hard) scooped out and into food processor with cacao and honey to sweeten!
This cake recipe was seriously delicious!
Baby cakes by Comfort Cupboard. And candles from his 1st birthday!
The kids also played pass the parcel which I literally whipped up an hour before the party. I grabbed a few newspapers out of the pantry, a book (prize) from the play room and some brown office tags from the study. I wrapped the book first and as I wrapped each newspaper lining I popped in a brown tag. Each time the music stopped and a brown tag was found upon unwrapping then they would get to enjoy a homemade mini date choc bliss ball. The kids loved this game, especially with the music blasting a kids Spotify party mix in the middle of the circle.
Once the game had finished they turned the music up and danced around the front yard for the next hour!!! Who would have thought a boom box would be such an easy form of entertainment!
We used all our own cutlery, plates, bowls, cups and bamboo straws. So yes there were a lot of dishes at the end of the night but nothing us mama's couldn't handle over a glass of wine!!
Overall, this was a very easy zero waste birthday party to put together. I did the food shop and prep the day before and the final touches the following day. We kept it very simple and there was no stress on the day. There were no balloons, poppers, streamers or party bags and no one noticed, nor cared and the kids enjoyed themselves anyway.
It's my daughter 1st birthday coming up soon so I'm hoping her birthday party will be just as easy!
Have you thrown a zero waste and/ or plastic free birthday party before? Would love to hear your successes?