Dorian’s 2nd birthday is coming up in just 20 days and I’ve been casually planning since July. Planning for his birthday is pretty simple though. Living so far away from our home town, there are no friends or family close enough to visit so we do his birthday a little different. Most kid’s birthday parties revolve around the other kids and guests. Having to make sure there’s plenty of food and that each guest’s dietary needs are met, activities or gift bags for the other kids are in order, and figuring out seats/other accommodations for everyone, these are not things we have to worry about. Since his birthday guest list contains only a couple of adults and himself all of the party arrangements are centered around him. There are 3 categories that I plan for when it comes to his birthday.
Instead of having a birthday party at the house, we plan an outing somewhere that we think would be fun for him. Last year, for his first birthday, we went to the aquarium and it turned out great. This year, we have planned to go to the zoo. As he gets older he will get to choose where he wants to go, but for now we choose. Just like most two year olds he loves learning about new animals and imitating all of their sounds. So, the zoo seemed like the most appropriate choice. We are actually buying a year pass for the three of us so we can go through out the year. Luckily, one of Daddy’s jobs is in the same city as the zoo so there will be more opportunities to go often. Although it is only a 1 hour drive so it wouldn’t be bad to head there on one of Daddy’s off days.
Daddy and I both had said that we were not going to put too much emphasis on presents so that Dorian learns about spending quality time with family versus being caught up in what all gifts he receives. But… when you have a kid you just want to give them everything in the world no matter what. We don’t go over board, but we do get him an adequate amount of gifts for his birthday and holidays. The gifts part is really what I’ve been planning for since July. Slowly I have been buying things and stashing them for his birthday and Christmas. It’s what I did last year and it worked very well. I buy several gifts of all sorts over the course of 5 months then come his birthday (November), I separate them. Some are pulled out for birthday gifts and the rest are left to be Christmas gifts. Doing it this way helps out so that we are not having to fork over a large amount of money in on shot.
Last year his grandmother made him an amazing cake for his first birthday and it was absolutely beautiful. She decorated it with whales, dolphins, and other sea animals to go along with the aquarium visit theme. We don’t have plans completely finalized yet, but this year we are going with some combination of his two favorite desserts. I’m thinking a large cookie ice cream sandwich, and Daddy has just a giant cookie cake in mind. We are still shopping around to find the perfect one.
I see videos and posts all the time of moms/parents going almost bonkers trying to plan the most perfect birthday party for their kid. It doesn’t have to be all that complicated. Just celebrate the little life in front of you and make the time together mean something. Hopefully this will help you in celebrating a child’s birthday with less worry and stress. For us, doing it this way makes the whole event less stressful for everyone and we get to take advantage of what really matters, enjoying him on his day.