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Graduation parties: Ideas, horror stories, gift giving...

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by PDilemma, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member

    So we have three kids graduating from high school in my family this spring. We will be throwing one party and attending two more.

    Anyone have good ideas for grad party food and decor? I should have ideas as I have been to about a million of them, but they were usually so over the top and I know we don't want to spend that much money. I am planning an open house style event and have a location. We will probably have it from roughly 3-5 p.m.

    Aside from that...anyone have gift ideas? I know that one mother has a long history of taking any monetary gifts given to her kids for her own use, so I don't want to give her son money.
  2. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

    Mine was a family potluck, but I was the only one graduating that year. It was delicious, though, all my Aunts and Uncles brought various home-cooked things and my parents and I made several things as well.

    As for gifts, if they are going to college then tangible items they can bring with them, useful things, will be appreciated. Mini fridges, gift cards to places that sell things they can buy for college, shower caddies... bean bags are huge amongst the college set ;)
  3. BigB08822

    BigB08822 Well-Known Member

    Is the boy going to college? The one whose mother is a thief? If so, maybe get him something small and then send him money once he moves in the dorms or his own place. His mom won't be able to take it then and I'm sure he will need it. Money is such a great gift for anyone going off to college.
  4. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member

    At this point, it sounds like he is not moving away from mom even though he is planning to start at a community college. I would like to give him some cash because I know he will need it to have any chance at succeeding in post secondary. Of the three kids, he is the one with the least parental support and financial resources (go figure). But his mom is throwing a ridiculously expensive party in the party room of an expensive restaurant with a full buffet...and I'm guessing his cash gifts are going to be immediately grabbed by mom to pay the bill for that (and what it won't pay, his grandparents will be stuck paying).

    We can't do pot luck for grad parties this year or the family will mutiny. LOL. Good news is no more for six years after this crowd is done.

    I'm thinking about doing cupcakes instead of buying a traditional bakery sheet cake for my nephew. He said that sounds "fun".
  5. reckless

    reckless Well-Known Member

    How does the boy feel about his mother taking his money? One thought is that family members could help him set up his own bank account with a debit card to use for college expenses. Money could be deposited directly into the account for him. Unless he withdrew it to give to his mother, she could not seize it. (An alternative is to give him money via PayPal if he has his own email address. He can then deposit that directly in a bank account or use it for online transactions.)
  6. Aceon6

    Aceon6 Hit ball, find ball, hit it again.

    For ideas, the best grad party was one that was fairly simple but was focused on what my niece was doing next. My sil bought decorations in the college colors, and we were encouraged to gift for September, not for June.

    As for the kid with the irresponsible mother, a pre-loaded credit card might be a good gift, and you can add to it when you wish.
  7. skipaway

    skipaway Well-Known Member

    This ^^ I have the account numbers for all my nieces/nephew and I deposit directly. Not saying at all that my sisters would take the kids money. But it works well and is very easy to do.
  8. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member

    Nephew has college narrowed down to two choices. Fingers crossed that he picks the one with the same colors as his high school, not because of grad party decor, but because it is very much a better school. If he does, it will make the party colors a no-brainer. Past, present, future all in one.

    I like the preloaded gift/credit card idea for the other one. As long as she doesn't take that. I'm thinking my parents, us and my brother could put his gift money all on one and make sure it is given to him directly rather than stuck in a card for his mom to grab.
  9. Garden Kitty

    Garden Kitty Tranquillo

    For decorations, I've always liked pictures of the graduate at various stages in his/her life - old class photos, pics from school activities and from when the grad was very young etc. You can also put some pics from whatever school/job the kid is going to pursue after graduation at one of the tables as a "look forward"