Creating Birthday Traditions
By Shelly Radic
Face wreathed in a smile, she opened her eyes as Mommy and Daddy woke her with a silly rendition of the birthday song. Now five, she knew this was only the first of many festive experiences waiting to greet her throughout this special day. Daddy would decorate the dining room with balloons and streamers. Mommy would make her favorite meal and sing the birthday song at least five more times. Filled with a sense of belonging and security, she pushed back the covers and snuggled into her parent’s arms.
Give your child that same sense of belonging and security by creating and keeping a few family birthday traditions from year to year. A tradition might spring from a parent’s own growing up years, be an activity your child enjoys, or be an idea gleaned from a friend.
Consider these ideas shared by moms across the country.
In the Morning
- Sing or play a special birthday wake up song.
- Decorate a doorway with a “streamer curtain”. As the birthday child runs through the streamers, cheer “Happy birthday, now you’re five!”
- Attach a piece of yarn to the end of the child’s bed and wind it throughout several rooms. At the other end attach a birthday surprise.
- Serve the birthday child a big, sugary donut while other family members eat a regular breakfast.
- Invite the birthday child to sit at the head of the table as king or queen for the day wearing a birthday crown and special clothing.
- Serve a specially selected birthday meal on a decorated birthday plate.
- Press the child’s footprint into a stepping-stone and add to a backyard path.
- Take a picture of the birthday child standing back to back with Daddy (or Mommy) and compare growth from year to year.
- Create a journal or photo journal of the birthday child’s favorite things each year.
- Ask grandparents to add to a charm bracelet or commemorative coin collection each year. If possible, take a picture of this event.
- Audio or videotape yourself praying for your child each year. Include things about the child you are thankful for, character traits to be developed, and a blessing for the future.
Whether entertaining only family members or inviting a few guests to help celebrate, tickle your child’s funny bone by adding a few twists to the traditional birthday party.
Want to make your child’s birthday party traditional, but memorable? Check out Shelly’s Tradition With a Twist Birthday Party Idea.