Friday, June 7, 2013

Celebrating Birthdays...

This year, in lieu of presents, we decided to try out a new way of celebrating our children's birthdays.

Truthfully, my children have very little need for more toys.  In an effort to make birthdays special memories instead of more materialism we have decided to forgo toys and instead treat our children to a special outing.  This year, for our 4 year old, Asher's, birthday we went camping at Camp Jellystone in Marion, NC.

For around $40 (not including food) we were able to camp out at the campground (which provided a campsite, grill, restrooms and showers) and enjoy all of the amenities that the campground had to offer.  This included an Olympic size pool, photo ops with Yogi Bear, miniature golf, huge sand boxes and playgrounds, fishing, paddleboating and kayaking, games with prizes, and a 300' long water slide.  Needless to say, our children had a blast! In the words of our 6 year old, "It's like a birthday present for all of us!"  I can't tell you how many time Asher said to me, "I'm happy we're at Camp Jellystone, mommy!"  I think that he enjoyed our little adventure much more than he would have any plastic toy!

The Birthday Boy

Ways we saved while celebrating:

1.  We let the family know of our plans.  Consequentially, many of them decided to give Asher money towards his outing rather than a new toy.  With this money we picked up one of Asher's favorite lunches on the way out, purchased some special "camping snacks" and treats for the boys, and allowed them a couple of bucks to play video games in the campground arcade.

2.  We kept the camping menu simple.  Hotdogs, chips, and smores for dinner; bacon and eggs for breakfast were purchased at a Walmart on the way to our site.

3.  We camped on a weekday.  Because of this we only had to stay one night instead of the usual two night minimum and we received free wristbands to enjoy the amenities for our entire stay at no additional cost.  We arrived to the campground at 1:00pm and left at 4:00pm the next day.  This was just the right amount of fun and excitement for mom and dad our small children and we were home in time to unpack the van, bathe, and go to bed at a decent time.

If you have young children, I highly recommend Camp Jellystone in Marion.  Clean Campsites  loads of fun for all of us, and a super sweet staff.  We will be revisiting!  Click here to see if there is a Camp Jellystone near your area.

 Canoeing with Daddy

300' Super Duper Triple Looper


 Elon Gets a Bite!

Asher Catches a "Shark"!


Pam said...

I'm so glad you posted these.... what a treat to get to peek at your fun. I love hearing about every morsel. The boys are so cute.

Love you so much,

Amy said...

Love it! And what a great idea. We are so over loaded with toys and they never play with them! I'm with you, creating memories is way more special!
Your family is just adorable!!
Miss you dear friend!

lizzy said...

Wow what a wonderful idea Himilce! I loved everything that you both decided on. And what happy memories you all will have! Miss you like crazy! I have a home phone number now. I need to give it to you and Nathan :) Love you!!

Arlene said...

How fun! Love the idea and what great memories the children will have because of the gift! :o)