Recently, my third child graduation from high school. I discovered some fun ideas for graduation and also realized there are some things that I will do differently for our next child. Check out my five best graduation ideas below:
- Graduation Announcements: This is something I will change for next time. I bought the formal announcements with the foil writing and fancy envelopes, which were nice, but next time I will do a fun photo announcement that is easy to make on mpix.com. You can check these out here.
- Fun Cupcake Treats: I purchased some fun cupcake liners and little toothpick signs for cupcakes to celebrate. I bought them on Amazon here.
- Senior Photos: We couldn’t afford a photo session for my daughter’s senior photos, so we took our own, edited them with PicMonkey, and then used mpix.com to print out wallet sizes, a couple 8 x 10 photos, and some 4 x 6 photos. I signed up for mpix.com’s newsletter and received a coupon for free shipping. I used the coupon and got free expedited shipping, so my the total for my photos was less than $20!
- Graduate Portfolio: We bought her a graduate portfolio which held an 8 x 10 photo, 2 wallet sized photos, her tassle, and her announcement. She love it and you can get one here for less than $20. There are other gifts on this site too like a bling tassle, if you are into that sort of thing. 🙂 You can also buy caps and gowns, tassles, homeschool diplomas, etc. at this site.
- Handmade Gift: Our graduate loved the memory box I made her in my ceramics class. Her first question was, “How long did it take you to make this?” She was obviously touched by my effort.
- Photo Memory Book: Since we homeschool, my daughter doesn’t receive a yearbook so we made a photo memory book of her years in high school. Since I am in love with mpix.com and had ordered her photos from them, I received a coupon code for 30% off a photo book. Since I had already designed the book and was just waiting for payday to purchase it, I was ecstatic. Anyway to save money is fantastic.
- Class Ring: We opted not to purchase a class ring for our daughter, but if we did we would have purchased it here. They were considerably lower in price than any other company we found.
- Special Dinner: Making a special dinner at home or going out to dinner after the graduation ceremony is a great way to include family in the festivities. Since we homeschool, we had a small graduation ceremony at home, then we picked Grandma up and went out to dinner. We opted to go out to dinner because our family has not done this since we visited my oldest son at The Air Force Academy for Parents’ Weekend, six years ago! This was a way to make graduation special for our homeschool family.
- The Graduate’s Survival Guide: This is a gift I will be buying in the future (we spent enough $ for now). Dave Ramsey gives excellent financial advice and I want my kids to start out financially sound. You can check it out here.
- Balloon of Awesomeness: Our neighbors gave our daughter the most amazing gift! I call it the balloon of awesomeness. It is a large, inverted, inflated balloon with curled cellophone ribbon and rolled up dollar bills in the bottom as a nest for the stuffed owl with a cap and gown on it hanging suspended with fishing line from the top (or bottom of balloon since it is inverted). They were able to place the items inside by stretching the opening of the balloon onto a piece of PVC pipe (many balloons gave their lives for this until one finally stayed on) and then slid the ribbon, dollars, and owl through the PVC pipe. Outside the balloon where it is tied at top, is more curled cellophane ribbon and a pretty bow.
Most of the ideas above cost $20 or less. These include the senior photos, the cupcakes, the graduation portfolio, the announcements, The Graduate’s Survival Guide, the handmade gift, and the balloon of awesomeness. The biggest expense for us was going out to dinner. With our large family it is very expensive even if it is not a fancy restaurant. I considered telling all the kids to order water to drink, but since it has been six years since our last dinner out I let them order whatever they wanted to drink. Of course, I didn’t know my hubby would order three different drinks. Three! Who does that? I was at the other end of the table or I would have given him a gentle nudge. 😉
Anyway, if you have some great graduation ideas, please share them in the comments below. I would love to hear from you!