When I found out I was pregnant, I felt nothing but pure joy. But when the initial shock passed and I had a moment to sit back and consider my due date, I have to admit I felt a bit of disappointment. December. My baby would be born in December and would forever have to share her birthday with the granddaddy of all holidays. I couldn’t think of a worse time of year to have a birthday. All the two-for-one gifts, the unattended (or non-existent) birthday parties, and just getting lost in the shadow of a fat, bearded man.
Our little Christmas present.
So, I began thinking and Michael and I began talking about how we can create some birthday traditions for our daughter that will set it aside from the bustling holiday madness. Michael likes to think big. He suggested taking some big family trip every year to mark her special day. I can definitely appreciate his enthusiasm, but I was thinking something smaller, simpler, yet special. Besides, traveling during the holiday rush and putting an additional strain on our wallets seems like a great way to turn me into a raving, stressed-out mad person. So here are just a few of the ideas I’ve come up with:
- Birthday Gift Hide and Seek: Leave little clues on notes throughout the house and the birthday girl will have to follow the directions on each note to find the next note and, eventually, her birthday present.
- On the Day You Were Born: Recount the story of the day she was born. Include pictures!
- Yearbook: I am actually working on this one now and it could easily go along with the last idea. I’m creating a book of her first year at shutterfly.com and at the end of the year, I will order it and have it sent to our doorstep. This could be read every year on her birthday or I could create a new one each year to celebrate that year’s highlights.
- Special meal or treat: Let her choose her favorite restaurant, meal at home, or special treat to accompany either one.
- Balloons!: I have been seeing this on Pinterest a lot lately…fill her room with balloons or barricading the door with balloons while she sleeps, so that she’s surprised when she wakes up in the morning.
- 20 Questions: Interview her each year with the same 20 question and see how their answers change. This could be included as part of the yearbook mentioned above or videotaped.
And I have a confession to make. At first, I was completely against the idea of incorporating anything Christmas-y into her birthday, but the more I think about it, it might be fun to make her birthday celebration part of choosing the Christmas tree. Her birthday is on the 14th, so I’m envisioning a weekend of going out to choose a tree, decorating it, hot cocoa, Christmas movies, maybe a trip to the ice skating rink, and a special meal just for the birthday girl.
Of course, Evelyn is only 8 months old and I have at least a few years to try to figure this out. Right now, I’m completely fixed on planning her first birthday party (more on this later). But I’m wondering, what are your special birthday traditions? How do you make your child’s birthday special?