A few weeks ago I asked for some help with birthday traditions, and so many of you submitted some great ideas in the comments. I wanted to share with everyone what you shared with me, so here are some great ideas for birthday traditions:


  1. The birthday fairy visits to decorate the table and birthday child’s chair and to leave special gifts. (Christie)
  2. Make a video asking the birthday child questions about themselves.
  3. The birthday child gets to use fancy celebration dishes for their birthday dinner. (Catherine)
  4. Make the birthday child their favorite meal and take them to their favorite restaurant. (Susan)
  5. Get balloons for how old they are. (Liz)
  6. Take a birthday photo with the number/age they’re turning somewhere in the picture.
  7. Take a picture of child every year on their birthday with a favorite toy or stuffed animal to see how they’ve grown. (Cindy B)
  8. No chores for the birthday child!
  9. Let the birthday child plan all 3 meals for the day. (Eisbeckers)
  10. Plant a tree on their first birthday and take a picture next to it each year to mark growth. (Kathleen)
  11. Around the dinner table, tell the birthday person something you appreciate about them. (Angel S.)
  12. Mom bakes the cake, Dad and birthday child decorate it together the night before the birthday.
  13. The birthday child gets to use a special birthday plate for each meal that day. (Jen T)
  14. Have a birthday treasure hunt with little gifts along the way. (Cristina)
  15. Make a handmade birthday gift each year. (Julie B)
  16. Record child’s height on the wall each year on his/her birthday, and make hand and footprints. (Baba)
  17. Take a picture of child holding a sign with their age on it and measure them against the wall. (Tammy B)
  18. Breakfast in bed. (Kim)
  19. Take a family picture. (Danielle)
  20. Beginning with their first birthday, make a time capsule and add things every year to be opened on their 18th birthday. (Meshellyn)
  21. After dinner, cake, and presents, play the birthday child’s favorite game together as a family. (Kelsey)
  22. Take a picture of the birthday child in one of Dad’s shirts to see growth over the years. (Kelsey)
  23. Write a letter to the birthday child telling them what they are like at that age. (Kelsey)
  24. Tell the birthday child his/her birth story.

With all these great ideas to choose from, you can pick your favorites and make birthdays in your family special and unique. Traditions are so important, and it’s never too late to start a new tradition, so get started! Thanks for all the great ideas!


1 Susan Driggers March 30, 2009 at 7:16 am

i like some of these! thanks for sharing kelsey!

2 Lin March 30, 2009 at 7:28 am

These are some great ideas I hadn’t thought of before. Thanks!

3 A Bird March 30, 2009 at 11:47 am

My daughters birthday is coming up soon, I am so glad you posted this because they are great ideas!

4 A Bird March 30, 2009 at 11:50 am

My daughters birthday is coming up soon, I am so glad you posted this because they are great ideas!
P.S.: Wanted to add good post!

5 Gisella March 30, 2009 at 12:06 pm

great ideas !!!

6 Natalee March 30, 2009 at 9:50 pm

I’m always wondering what I could do to make my children’s birthdays a little more special, or different… something that they’ll remember. I loved reading all of the ideas submitted in this post. Thanks for all of the hard work and creativity you put into this website Kelsey. I enjoy reading all of your posts.
I’m excited about my cam-pod!

7 Julie B March 31, 2009 at 6:03 am

I really like a lot of these suggestions and will try to implement a few. I especially liked the idea of something with their age being in the photo. My girls are 1 and 2 so its still early for me to add some new traditions.

Growing up, I still remember my birthday cakes, and playing with the toys that came on them. There was always something magical about a birthday cake :) I saved the toys that came on them for my daughters’ 1st birthdays, stored them away in their keepsake boxes.

8 Amanda N March 31, 2009 at 9:55 pm

what great ideas!! I love the time capsule idea…as well as the letter each year. I think putting the letter in the time capsule would be fabulous too! I might be a bit too tempted to open it and read it each year though. :)
thanks for all the great ideas!

9 syeda April 1, 2009 at 6:35 am

Really cool ideas. Have to incorpate some of those into our family. thanks Kelsey!

10 Meg September 9, 2011 at 10:04 pm

Wow, so many great ideas. I’ll be using quite a few of them with the kids getting older. Always looking for great ideas like this!

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