10 Ideas For Starting A Birthday Tradition For Your Child
20 Feb 2014
To a child, his/her birthday is the most magical day of the year. Having a birthday tradition is something that your child will remember and treasure forever.
Here is a list of my favorite ideas for creating unforgettable memories:
1. Each year go to the same restaurant or cook your child’s favorite meal and dessert. My fondest memories are of waking up to my mother making her signature French toast for breakfast and after dinner having mint chocolate chip ice cream mudpie from Baskin Robbins.
2. On each birthday, trace your child’s hand on paper or make a handprint with paint. Cut out the tracing or handprint, punch a hole in it, and add it to a ring or rope. It is fun to show the progression in hand size each year. Once your child is old enough, he/she can start coloring and decorating the hand cutout.
3. Have a surprise decoration waiting for your child when he or she wakes up. Sneak in the child’s bedroom while they are sleeping and spread balloons all across the floor. Alternatively cover the living room ceiling or floor in balloons. As the child gets older, you can add some rolled up dollar bills inside the balloons. Variations on this idea include filling the bedroom closet with balloons that will pour out upon opening the door or sending a big box of balloons to the birthday child via regular postal service mail.
4. Buy or make a custom birthday shirt with your child’s name and/or their age made of patterned fabric. Below are my children’s birthday shirts created by Hazel Bulatao of Sweet Camille.
5. Create a time capsule. Each year buy the local newspaper and laminate the front page for insertion into a 3 ring binder. In between years, you can put pages of photos of your child from the past year. The newspapers can also be stored in a plastic bottle as a time capsule or even just in a special box. When your child turns a special age that you designate, the child is allowed to open the time capsule and view its contents.
6. Add birthday party photos and entries into your child’s memory book. When your child is grown, he or she will appreciate that you captured their special day every year.
7. Hang a paper or wooden growth chart and mark off birthdays with large marks but also mark quarterly or on holidays. In my house growing up, we just wrote right on the wall with a pencil.
8. Use a birthday picture-taking prop such as a vintage chalkboard that the child can hold. Each year write the age on the chalkboard. Or use a big wooden number cutout. Make it fun by having your child pick out his or her favorite outfit.
9. Interview the child on their birthday and ask the same questions each year (What do you want to be when you group up? What is your favorite toy? etc). Document the answers either on paper or on video.
10. Display a countdown to your child’s birthday in the kitchen or main family gathering area. This can be done on a large whiteboard, chalkboard, clipboard or simply using large construction paper. We are CountingCandles after all, and a lot of the joy that comes from birthdays is the counting down and building excitement of one’s upcoming birthday!