I had grand plans for my daughter’s birthday at the beginning of the month, and mine just a few days ago. Chloe was going to have a joint birthday party with a friend, and I had plans to be away just the husband and I, already booking in my parents to babysit. Knowing it would fall on the Easter weekend, I knew we’d be seeing family, and it would make it really special. Little did I actually know, as April turned into full lockdown in the UK.
I know in the grand scheme of things that our birthdays are just a day, and there is so much else going on right now. But it took some adjustments and getting used to things, as well as a little bit of getting creative to make sure that the days went well. For me, I don’t really mind (I’ve had a birthday with an 11 day old baby before, recovering from a c-section, so no birthdays will be as uneventful as that one was). But I still wanted to make sure that it was fun and enjoyable for my daughter. Hopefully we will be able to properly celebrate our half-birthdays this year instead!
Here are some of the things that we did to make sure that a birthday in lockdown can still be fun and enjoyable:
A birthday isn’t a birthday without a cake, right? I had planned to bake a cake for Chloe, as I do enjoy it, and have a little extra time on my hands. That being said, I couldn’t find flour anywhere! So instead of getting a Betty Crocker mix (which I did for mine- still couldn’t find flour!) we looked through the online shopping section of our local supermarket, to choose a cake that she would like best. She chose a top three, and I just had to see what the shop had on the day that I went. It makes a difference having a cake in, and if you don’t have flour stored up, then there are still options.
Ever since I was little, I have always thought that birthday should be a big deal, and that you get pretty much be queen for a day. As such, you get to choose the menu. It kind of turned out in Chloe’s favour being in lockdown, because other than the missed party side of things, she actually got to not be at school, could play with her new toy all day, and get to eat her favourite foods, rather than have school dinner! She chose sushi for lunch (I know, right), and then Thai food for dinner. So fancy for a six year old. I wanted to have a roast dinner, so we made the first roast dinner that we have made for ourselves in years, and it was epic. Teamed up with cake and Easter eggs, it was a good day. So yeah, plan out what you’re going to eat in advance, to make sure you get in exactly what you need.
For me, online shopping is something that I do so much of the time anyway, that it really hasn’t been that different in lockdown. But ordering online is the way to go, as people are still delivering parcels. The order times are a little longer, though, so unless you’re paying for express delivery, expect them to be a lot longer. So if you have a birthday for someone in a couple of weeks, I’d get ordering now.
Having some games in to play is a must, especially as you’ll be limited to what you can do. We played some games, played outside, and made our daily walk a little more of a scavenger hunt, to make it more interesting than normal.
FaceTime / HouseParty
We are so blessed with the technology that we have at our fingertips. That even if we are just staying at home, we can still see our family and friends, and they can see us. Chloe was able to FaceTime all of her family members, and open gifts from them with them watching on the other end of the phone. It isn’t quite the same, but it isn’t far off. Make the most of the technology that you have to use if you have a birthday in lockdown.