50th Birthday, present & party ideas (merged)

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Special Occasions & Other Celebrations
97 replies 27.7K views


  • acrossacross Forumite
    1.6K Posts
    good thinking jay jay well done there too you!!:beer:
  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
    43.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    DH gave me a book for my 50th birthday. "You gave me that before", I said. "Did I?" said he. "Yes, look, it's over there." "Oh, have you read it yet?" "Yes." "Was it good?" "Yes, I enjoyed it."

    Anyway, that was just to make sure I'd got something to open because we were going to buy me a piece of jewellery together. He was thinking of a gold chain with a heart to replace the one he lost when I was in hospital last year, but I couldn't see one I liked as much as that one (Moral: do NOT send your wife's jewellery through the washing machine while she's in hospital!) so we've bought me the most beautiful ring. Ruby gold, with a 'wiggle' in the shank (I'm sure there's a technical term for it!) and two tear-shaped garnets snuggling up together so they look like hearts at first glance.

    In-laws bought me a beautiful pen and pencil set, very heavy, in a practically bullet-proof case. And one of those things with pockets you put under the mattress to keep your book, your glasses and the TV remote handy - which I've found quite useful, although we don't have TV in our bedroom. It has encouraged me to start wearing my glasses when I'm reading in bed ... Also some snazzy notebooks. Don't know if they were trying to suggest something?

    My family bought me a necklace and bracelet. But I don't have a lot of jewellery. Well, not that I wear, anyway.

    My mum tried to get me 50 little presents, but she failed (TBH I'm quite relieved about that!)

    I also found it very difficult to think what I wanted. We did have a family meal, I'd wanted a day out but we couldn't find a suitable Saturday and for travelling it had to be a Saturday. And not all my siblings could come. Went out for the day with DH on the day itself, that was lovely.

    Hope you think of something special for you! And it's not really that different from being 49 either ...
    Still knitting!
    Completed: TWO adult cardigans, 3 baby jumpers, 3 shawls, 1 sweat band, 3 pairs baby bootees, 2 sets of handwarmers, 1 Wise Man Knitivity figure + 1 sheep, 2 pairs socks, 3 balaclavas, multiple hats and poppies, 3 peony flowers, 4 butterflies ...
    Current projects: pink balaclava (for myself), seaman's hat, about to start another cardigan!
  • RhyburghRhyburgh Forumite
    423 Posts
    Depends what you like doing really. But as a treat for my husbands 50th, we went to London, had front row seats to see Les Mis, stayed the night, then spend the next day on the Orient Express having a champagne dinner.
    (I had been saving tesco vouchers so cashed them in for the OEx trip). It was fantastic and I can't wait to have another go.
    Heard the Shaggy Taxi Wind Up Phone Call?
    Visit my Shaggy videos on Youtube - search for Rhyburgh1 - now over 700,00 views - bring on the million!! Enjoy.
  • Hi!

    Its my mums 50th this year! Shes had an incredibly stressful and horrible time lately and i want to do something special for her.

    I was thinking a suprise party with about 60-70 people.

    I seem to have come to a bit of a standstill though. I don't mind spending say upto £500 for everything but the more i look into it, the more its seeming to cost.

    Does anyone have any ideas/locations/moneysaving tips????

    I'm hoping to hold it in the buckinghamshire/oxfordshire/NW London type area.

    Thanks xxxxxxx
    What the Deuce?
  • illmonkeyillmonkey Forumite
    677 Posts
    Tacky parties are the best.

    We threw a party for my parent’s 25th wedding anniversary.

    We hired a rugby club (they had a large room above it with a bar) and just invited 50+ people.

    As it was a surprise, we had to get them in the room without knowing, so we got there best friends to come over, expecting to have a Chinese, then they suggested to go to the "grotty" rugby club for a beer.

    All in silence, they walk in, BAM! Light on music on SURPRISE!!!!!!

    They loved all of it, seeing old friends etc. And my parents hate surprises!

    The Venue doesn’t really matter, everyone had a great time, it was cheap and it was a late bar. We got a range of people, we stole there address book, photocopied it and basically rung most people. Along with inviting some other friends of my brothers, who defiantly spiced it up!

    We know a DJ, so hired him for £150. Provide some nibbles and the room properly costs £150 for the evening. Add some balloons and your pretty much set!
  • bulchybulchy Forumite
    955 Posts
    samgoffes idea is a good one, rope in as many people as you can to help with buffet etc, I could imagine planning a surprise party is fun but stressful, I couldnt keep it secret, I'd be too excited. Good luck, hope it all goes well
  • suki21suki21 Forumite
    15 Posts
    We just had a party for my parents' silver wedding. Although it wasn't a surprise, my boyfriend and I did most of the organising so they could just arrive and enjoy it - and they did!

    Some moneysaving things we did:
    1. Music - we created a party mix on the computer and downloaded it onto an MP3 player which we then plugged into speakers instead of having a DJ - started off with quieter stuff then just turned it up when it was time for dancing!
    2. Venue - we would have had it in the garden if the weather had been better (free!) but in the end we hired the village hall which was £80 for the whole day and evening. We decorated it exactly how we wanted and there's often room to negotiate with the price, especially if it's a late booking.
    3. Food - we had a hog roast which was about £200 for 100 people, then just asked relatives (we have lots!) to make salads, quiches etc to keep the costs down. Dessert was a chocolate fountain which we already own (but was about £50 to buy and the best investment ever - people absolutely love it and it's a regular feature at all our parties!) and a load of fresh fruit which relatives also provided. The food was a great talking point, we kept it a surprise beforehand and it's just a little bit different, so I'm glad we did it and spent the money. But, to be honest, with the number of friends who phoned up beforehand offering to bring things / do things, we could easily have managed without.
    4. Balloons and decorations - we bought them really cheaply from Hobbycraft, balloons are a bargain there and they have loads of colours, and we made some of our own banners. We bought a helium canister from an internet company (pm me if you want to know who) who don't charge for delivery & therefore are some of the cheapest around. For balloon weights we wrapped potatoes in silver foil - an absolute bargain cos to buy balloon weights are about £1.50 each.
    5. We made a cake ourselves - lucky that my boyf's handy at Djing AND cake decorating! So only the ingredients with that one.
    6. You might prefer to go for a bar rather than supplying your own drinks since your budget's pretty tight, but just to mention that you can 'borrow' glasses from loads of places. We got ours for free from Waitrose, you just have to pay £1 per breakage but out of probably 300 glasses we only had 6. Oh, and you do have to wash them up!

    That's about all I can think of...a couple of other things I did which weren't moneysaving but which my parents loved was making a couple of noticeboards (covered with wadding then fabric the same as my mother's wedding dress, then with ribbon in a criss-cross pattern) and tucking in lots of photos of the 2 of them together & when they were children. Guests loved looking at them and my parents now have them to keep as well. And we put a guestbook out and made sure people knew about it to sign it. That is probably the best thing I did as it's such a wonderful reminder for my parents of who was there and of all these lovely good wishes - lots of the people were old friends (including their best man who we tracked down via Google!) who they don't see very often.

    Sorry this is such a long post but hope you find some of it helpful. Good luck with organising everything - your mum's very lucky to have such a nice daughter. :)

  • CCStarCCStar Forumite
    6.7K Posts
    Any ideas??

    I don't see her very often and don't want to spend a fortune.

    Been invited to her 50th birthday party next month and don't know what to buy.
    An average day in my life:hello: :eek::mad: :coffee::coffee::coffee::T :o :rotfl: :rotfl: :p :eek::mad: :beer:
    I am no expert in property but have lived in many types of homes, in many locations and can only talk from experience.
  • Does she have any interests that you could take advantage of for ideas? Or if you want a quick and easy pressie I usually end up giving a bottle of bubbly.
  • ailuro2ailuro2 Forumite
    7.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Gift voucher for a spa treatment?

    most people would use that, or pass it on as a gift to someone else if they didn't fancy it themselves, so your money wouldn't be wasted?
    Member of the first Mortgage Free in 3 challenge, no.19
    Balance 19th April '07 = minus £27,640
    Balance 1st November '09 = mortgage paid off with £1903 left over. Title deeds are now ours.
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