Kids’ party favors… that actually consider the environment!

This weekend we are celebrating our kids’ birthdays ONCE AGAIN… but this time with all of their friends.

What kid’s party would be complete without party favors.  Kids bring a gift, but they expect to leave with something a little fun for themselves too.

In past years, I think I have purchased every plastic, throw-away, China-made (potentially lead-laden!) trinket on earth. This year, my conscience wouldn’t allow me to do that.  I wracked my brain for something that wouldn’t eventually wind up in the trash some night, long after the kids have gone to bed, and mom thinks “okay, time to get rid of THIS junk!”  (I’ve done it and you know you have too!… followed-up with a “I don’t know where that went, honey!”)

This year I hit the craft store and bought a canvas tote bag for each one of our little party-goers!  Inside we’re putting a little ‘thank you’ note from our kids, a tube of fabric paint (that they can use to decorate the bag when they get home) and a message about why we chose to give them the tote bag… a message about considering the environment, obviously!  Cost of the tote – a dollar!  Cost of the fabric paint – a dollar!  Two whole bucks and we will have given the kids something that they can use again, and again, and again!… and isn’t likely to wind up in the trash.  (The little “eco-friendly” seal makes me smile too!)

We’re so excited to give all of the friends a really great favor and spread a happy little “earth message”.  Now, if we can just keep the moms from snagging the tote bag, we’ll have done a great job!

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16 thoughts on “Kids’ party favors… that actually consider the environment!

  1. Hello Moms! I love this article…our little guy wants to have his birthday party at McDonalds next month-AGH yuck…I can’t even get started on the kind of nasties inside that food. Not to mention the waste in a Happy meal that has one of those “mom’s favorite toys” inside that maybe last for a few weeks and then hit the garbage. Anyway- I know, he’s only a kid once….and those slides, come on! How can they resist? BLAH. But I loved the tote bag idea so much! Our babe also has had severe food allergies (so he can’t even eat the food in the box-just wants the toy and slides) so I HATE goody bags with junk food. Our daughter has had cavity issues too, so THANK YOU for bringing this to so many others attention. Enough with the sugar and waste…sorry, hit a cord with me LOL. Did I mention we have four inches of fresh miserable snow here…I think I need a vacation! 🙂

  2. Hiya Doreen!

    Great idea on the goody bags! I would LOVE to know what your little note said about why you chose to give the tote bag. We have my daughter’s 4th birthday coming up. After attending a season of insane “jumpity jump” parties, etc. for her friends, we are planning to go back to the park to do an eco craft again this year. I found some really cute jute drawstring bags that I purchased for goody bags and I plan on putting an endangered species chocolate and other eco related/reusuable items. I would just love to see how you worded your message, if you are willing to share! 🙂

    As always, your blog is my favourite! Keep up the fabulous job of inspiring other moms (like me!). Cheers, Kimberly

    Kimberlys last blog post..shout out for eco books!

  3. islander mom – ooooh, McDonald’s! I have ingrained such a dislike in my kids they never want to go there, but yes, as a mommy you do whatever makes them happy! 🙂 I’m glad you like the idea though and I swear, I spent less than I would have buying a boatload of candy and miscellaneous, throw-away trinkets! … and by the way, where are you? I’m in Cleveland and we just welcomed from 10-12 inches around my area over the past 24 hours! yahoo!… yea, not so much!….

    Kimberly – Sure I’ll share! Besides our obvious “thank you for celebrating our birthdays with us…blah, blah, blah” message, the portion that pertains to the tote bag goes like this (as cheesy as it may be!) …

    “Instead of giving you a bag of treats and trinkets, we decided to give you a tote bag that you can decorate at home and use again and again! Our mom is teaching us to think about the environment and tote bags are a great way to do it! If you have to bring something to school, take something to an activity or a play date, you can use this bag instead of a plastic bag that will get thrown away! Or you can decorate the bag for someone special (like your Mom!) to use when she goes shopping! We hope you like it!”

    All of the kids are between preschool age and first grade, so hopefully their parents will read the message to them, but at least the parents will hopefully read it and it will have a bit of an impact! What do you think? And thank you, as always, for the kind words! It’s so appreciated! Cheers to you too!

  4. Hey Doreen! We are in Indiana…so I guess that makes us neighbors 🙂 My hubs is a born and raised buckeye though…Go Indians! I personally enjoy baseball, hubby is a “die-hard” browns man too though. He remains hopeful and optimistic every single season. Also, you are so so lucky to live near Put In Bay! We honeymooned there and continue to make it a goal to get there every summer-Fun! Though, we always make sure to go during the week when the crazy twenty-somethings are not there…we just can’t keep up with that 😉 Not that thirty-something is all that much older…oh well. So neighbor…I am with ya…can’t take this cold! Wishing and hoping to convince hubs to take the fam south- hence, my “pen” name!! One can dream…right?

  5. islander mom – hey, we are state neighbors! We are huge Browns fans… much to our own dismay! (fans enough that we were at last year’s BLIZZARD game!) And Put-in-Bay… always a GREAT time! Much luck with those island dreams too! 🙂

    Beth – you’re welcome! We hope our little party-goers like it as much as we do! I think they will… kids love crafts and it feels like they’re walking away with something pretty cool!

  6. Loved this idea! Just might use it at our party end of this month. Where did you purchase these fabulous $1 totes??

  7. christie – at Pat Catan’s – a local craft store, but I imagine any larger craft store would have something comparable! Good luck… it IS a great party favor!

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  9. Great Article! I am trying to get my kids excited about nature and plants so I searched and searched untill i found the TickleMe Plant party favor! In it you can grow a real plant that MOVES when you tickle it! The leaves instantly close and even the branches droop when Tickled! I found it at
    You have to see the video and grow your own to believe a plant can be a pet, but this one is.

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  12. My kids loved the TickleMe Plant Party favors. Who know a houseplant can move like that when Tickled!
    Just search TickleMe Plant or go right to the website. Now they seem to love gardening…way cool

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