Since March 23rd 2020, we have experienced restrictions of one sort or another due to the pandemic. It’s been 10 months of confusion, fear, anxiety and frustration but the world keeps turning and the way families have found ways to survive and have fun during this time has been so uplifting and inspirational!
When it comes to children’s birthdays, I’ve seen so many parents finding ways to make the say special while still adhering to the restrictions. Children are so resilient and can often find joy in the simplest things…they dont need lavish parties or a giant pile of presents. I think if this pandemic has taught us anything, it’s how important our loved ones are and how we can still enjoy birthdays without all the hoo-harr!
Over the years the cost of children’s parties has risen and some families find themselves paying out hundreds of pounds for a simple party. Want to invite the whole class….fine! But you will need to dig deep for that. And picking and choosing who to invite can also lead to ill-feeling. Parents are feeling under pressure to throw ever-more-fancy parties for kids but do kids really benefit from this “keeping up with the Jones'” way of thinking?
So we’ve had an opportunity now to stop and downscale the parties and create celebrations that are more intimate and really focus on the birthday boy or girl.
We are now looking at children having not one but TWO birthdays in lockdown and so many families have come up with some amazing ways to make the day special. So I asked on social media and here are some great ideas for you! All of these ideas can be adapted to incorporate whatever tier we are in so lots of flexibility.
1. A Zoom Birthday Party
Vick said “I planned a zoom Birthday party with a few of Scarlett’s school friends. I made t-shirts for everyone to wear saying Scarlett’s 5th Birthday in lockdown. The night before the party I went and dropped the t-shirts and a party bag off. We played music and everyone danced and all the children emptied their party bags at the same time!
Sarah wrote “I made bags that were either dropped off or collected from ours (socially distanced and any travel was either exercise or combined with an essential journey). In the bags there were supplies for a crown or Mario hat to decorate. There was a cupcake, Mario coins, hot chocolate, balloons, bubbles, colouring in sheet and a little paper craft. I wrote an instruction sheet for parents because I did need them to have supplies. I made the bags 72 hours before the party so they were safer to help prevent transmission. We sang happy birthday, the kids all ate their cupcakes together, then we started on the craft. After everyone finished with the craft we did a memory game that was Mario themed. We’ve now reused the decorations to redecorate Ella’s room.
Claire told me “I’m going to deliver a box of crafts and party snacks to her friends houses and invite them to a zoom craft party”
2. A Pottery Painting Party
Canny Crafty offer some great kits to keep little hands (and big ones) occupied.
The items you can choose to paint range from £8-£30 each with popular items such as mugs, plates and bowls being £10-£16 each. The cost includes the price of the paint, glazing and firing process.
10% off for NHS staff too!
3. A Pizza Party
Kids love cooking and who doesn’t love pizza!
4. Hire a bouncy castle
Amy wrote “We hired a bouncy castle for the garden! A very surprised 8 year old”
This might be one of my favourite ideas….who doesn’t love a bouncy castle?
5. A Treasure Hunt
This can be done indoors or outdoors on your daily walk. Depending on the restrictions, you could meet a few others outdoors for a challenge! You could hide presents at each stage. Here are some ideas for clues….
6. Build a Bear Party
Claire wrote “I bought Sam and three friends these no sew teddy kits and they all sat on zoom together. The teddies are lovely quality”
Claire used Splodge Teddy Parties
7. Indoor sleep-over Tent Parties.
I love this idea and they are great for including siblings too (or anyone in your bubble) and also good for winter birthdays too…maybe team it up with a cinema night and hot choc?
Check out The Event Boutique on Facebook.
8. Outdoor cinema
Definitely one for summer birthdays but this would be so special for any child! We may even be allowed people in the garden when the weather starts improving.
For outdoor cinema hire check out Undefined Group
9. A Garden Festival
Nicola told me “we bought bunting flags for the garden, we set up games like hook a duck, bean bag toss, plate spinning and giant Jenga. I bought face paints, flower garlands, face gems and we made our own tie dye t-shirts to wear. We got some wrist bands made too. We had festival/carnival food like candy floss, chocolate apples, hot dogs and fries etc. It was fab”
10. Involve the neighbours!
I loved this idea from Jennifer “For my daughters 1st birthday, I posted on our village page inviting people to fill our windows up with rainbows, notes etc. It was lovely some people we didn’t know, some kids made birthday cards for her and it just made us feel a bit less isolated”
I also LOVED this photo!
A Cake Smash with Tiny Baby Studio! Celebrate the most special birthday of them all..their FIRST birthay. We can create some fun portraits using your favourite colours or theme. Let them have fun and big brother or sister can join in too. And if everything just gets too messy we can end with a splash. (Photography studios are not able to open in Tier 4 or National Lockdown)