Celebrating Your Child's Birthday At Christmas
It's common knowledge, that those who celebrate a birthday around Christmas can feel their special day is overshadowed. Everyone is busy, the shops are full of all things crimbo and family/friends think it's ok to merge the celebrations together. There are plenty of ways to ensure your winter baby's birthday is an individual event just like any other child would experience. We'd like to share a few ideas with you here.
How would your child like to celebrate?
Children are planning their birthday, weeks before we've even thought about it! Find out what 'their' plans are. How would they like to celebrate and with who? This provides a good starting point of where, when and what you need to think about. Although not part of the planning process, consider asking your child for their thoughts around whether they would be happy for the Christmas decorations to be up. This gives them some control over how the day makes them feel. As your child grows up, their views as to whether a Christmas birthday is great or not, will undoubtably change so it's worth checking each year.
Buy in advance
Christmas takes over in the shops from November, so the selection of birthday cards, wrapping paper and decorations are greatly reduced. I have three family birthdays at the beginning of January, so I buy the cards in October now. By purchasing ahead of time, it also helps to spread out the cost, bonus!
Planning a celebration
With Covid-19 restrictions ever changing, please follow the current Government guidelines regarding mixing households.
Being one of the busiest times of the year for families, planning to celebrate with friends and family can be a headache! We've come up with a few options, to ensure that at least the majority of your guests, will be able to attend.
- Whether your party falls in December or early January, hand out party invitation's weeks in advance, before diaries get filled up. You can always follow up with a digital reminder nearer the time.
- Consider booking your party during school termtime (weekends or after school). Feedback shows that this is more successful than the school holidays, when people are visiting relatives and getting organised for Christmas.
- Discuss with your child the idea of having a party in November or late January; it'll be like having two birthdays!
- Forget the idea of a party and take a couple of friends out for the day. You've only got to liaise with a small number of guests, to agree on a date. Much easier!
- Some people choose to celebrate the 'Half Birthday', although it's not favoured by everyone. A half birthday is where you celebrate on the same date but halfway through the year so that your Christmas baby can have a special day of festivities all of their own. An added bonus is that they will be able to partake in summer activities that would be impossible in December. Half birthdays also put an end to that eleven-month present drought. Hee hee!
The perks of a Christmas birthday
Take advance of this great time of year! Firstly, there are usually extra options for fun outings! Take a group of friend's ice skating, to watch a pantomime, visit a winter wonderland or check out the Christmas experience days, that many establishments have to offer. Secondly, as a parent, it's a good time to buy presents. With Black Friday deals, followed closely by the pre and post-Christmas sales, these can lead to a jolly good bargain!
The 3 rules
- No combined presents.
- No presents wrapped in Christmas paper.
- No Christmas related food, drink or presents.
Sharing a birthday on Christmas Day
If your child's birthday falls on Christmas Day, some of our suggestions my not work for you. Therefore, we've got specific ideas to help you create a balance, when two special days come together.
- Designate a space or room in your home for birthday decorations, cards and presents.
- Decorate a birthday tree! You can either decorate your tree with birthday ornaments or cover it with streamers and balloons.
- Coming up with pressie ideas to cover two occasions on one day, can be challenging for everyone. Suggest vouchers for outings and experiences instead. This spreads the birthday fun throughout the year!
- Split the day in half. Designate the morning to one festivity and the afternoon to another. Carry out your usual traditions within that time so it feels like two days but in one!
- The party tea and a cake are one of the most important things for a child on their birthday. Swap the Christmas tea for a birthday party tea… with cake, of course!
- Try to stick with any family birthday traditions, whether it's playing a game or watching a movie.
Keep it fair
At this point it's worth mentioning, that as much as you want you Christmas baby to feel their birthday is a distinct event in its own right, don't over compensate with 'extra' gifts; your other children will notice!
Just remember, it doesn't matter where your child's birthday falls on the calendar. What's more important is that they feel valued and are given the special attention they deserve.