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We all harbor dreams of making our kids birthday parties look like our Pinterest boards but the idea of turning our dreams into a reality cause us to break out in a cold sweat. So instead of going the store bought route or even worse, throwing a full blown DIY party that turns into disaster 101, we’ve come up with three simple (yes, simple) DIY birthday party themes that are easily doable for the craft-challenged as well as healthy snack tips to keep your little partygoers active and energetic. Get inspired by these three ideas that look polished and professional, but were all done by DIY mamas on a budget.

At Zevia, we believe that every day is worth celebrating, but how do we do it a little smarter? Check out the ideas below and our Smarter Celebrations Pinterest Boards to help you throw the perfect party. Then kick back and pop open a can of Zevia Zero Calorie Soda with this high value coupon

Julia’s Fourth Birthday Pawty
With just a park, a dog-crazy kid, and a big imagination, you can throw a puppy pawty just like Julia’s mom did for her daughter’s fourth birthday. This DIY party took place at Julia’s local park, which party goers could reserve in advance for a nominal fee — we think if you’re planning a summer birthday it’s definitely worth checking out reserving a spot at your local park. The best part about the location? The lack of clean up before guests arrive and after they leave. The party was chock full of puppy themed activities and treats. Our favorite has to be the doggie kibble aka Coco Pufs and bones aka Scooby Doo graham crackers. Get inspired by this puppy pawty and see all the fabulous photos by reading more here.

Party Snack Tip: For more doggy-inspired snacks, try making your own homespun (and healthy) version of puppy chow made with a mixture of 1-2 tbsp peanut butter, 1-2 tbsp cocoa powder, and 1 cup rice chex. Or, make DIY Dog Bones with whole wheat mini pretzel sticks stuck into a mini marshmallow on either side and dipped in melted yogurt chips or white chocolate.

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Outer Space Astronaut Party
Over the princess party theme? How about another bouncy house? No thanks! If you’re looking for a cool DIY birthday idea, check out this super sweet outer space birthday party for your astronauts in training. We love this theme because it’s gender neutral and most everything can be easily done yourself (or bought at your local craft store). To really ramp up the fun, convert your garage or spare bedroom into a glow-in-the-dark bonanza with black lights and hanging stars and planets that you and your kids can make in advance. Hand out glow sticks and you’ve got yourself an out of this world party. Click here to find out how you can throw an outer space party from the invites to the decor to party favors. 

Party Snack Tip: Keep your little space explorers fueled with flying saucer pizza bites made from english muffins topped with pasta sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese. For a sweeter treat, cut a melon in half, scoop out the seeds, and slice the melon into rings. Stack them from largest to smallest and fill with fruit salad or watermelon balls to make colorful melon planets. Finally, for an out-of-this-world (but healthy) root beer float mix in vanilla frozen yogurt and crushed up astronaut ice cream “sprinkles.”

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Alana’s Second Birthday
Any of our kids’ birthdays are certainly huge milestones, but for Alana’s parents, their daughter’s second birthday was extra special. Alana was born two entire months early, weighing in at a little over three pounds. So when Alana turned two, her parents wanted to make the party extra memorable, while sticking to a budget. This DIY party took place in the family’s condo clubhouse and Alana’s mom set up stations (a pop up princess castle, snack bar, mini bowling and coloring zone) around the room to encourage the toddlers to explore. Alana’s crafty mama made most of the decorations herself and she even shared her shopping list and advice with us. Read more to discover how this party came together and then take a look at the awesome photos. 

Party Snack Tip: Celebrate strong and healthy kids with some high-protein good-for-you snacks that taste great too. Spread peanut butter and bananas drizzled with a little honey on a whole wheat tortilla and roll it up for a power-packed wrap. Grab a handful of carrots or cucumber slices and dip them in hummus for a vitamin- rich snack that’s great any time.

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What was your most successful DIY party? How about your most disastrous?