Let's start with decorations. Each year, we go out and buy a colourful sign that says Happy Birthday!!!, we buy party hats and streamers and all sorts of things. While not all decorations can be salvaged, most can. Let's face it, there's going to be another birthday party in exactly one year, so try and reuse those decorations instead of buying new ones all the time. Whatever can't be salvaged, recycle. It's better than just throwing it out.
Moving on to lunch time. For some reason, we tend to serve meals on paper or styrofoam plates when serving kids at a party. Why? I'm sure these kids all eat on regular dishes at home. I'm not saying to break out the good china, but you can certainly use everyday dishes. Sure, it may be an extra dish load to wash, but isn't that better than using disposable items that will just wind up in a landfill? If you have to use disposable dishes and cups, at least make sure they're made from recyclable materials. The blue bin is better than the garbage bin. That means no styrofoam, please!
Finally, a tip on gift wrapping. We all want the gift to look pretty before it's opened, but wrapping paper is just such a waste. Instead, use gift bags. They come in all sizes and patterns and can be bought cheaply at any dollar store. They make for pretty wrappings and can be used over and over for all kinds of gift exchanges. My family has been doing gift bags for years and I hardly ever need to buy new ones as we just keep using the ones we received gifts in.
If you've got any other Green party tips, please feel free to comment.