For most of us in lockdown, these are the strangest times we’ve lived through and a lot has had to change. It has not been easy for parents to work from home, home-school their children for the first time and try to keep them happy and healthy whilst mostly indoors and confined from their friends and family. We have been happily providing activities in lockdown to parents, with ideas on how to keep little hands and minds working, but one of the biggest questions we’re seeing parents ask right now is ‘How can I make a birthday special in lockdown?’
We know that most parents like to throw surprise parties for their little one on their birthday, inviting the whole family and his/her friends or organising a party somewhere as a surprise. Since social distancing measures don’t allow the typical response, we’ll have to get more creative! Decorate the house while they’re sleeping, make fun foods and cakes and find other ways to hold onto the element of surprise on their birthdays.
Their Favourite People
Make sure all of their favourite people are set up on speed dial or on a video call to celebrate the birthday with the birthday boy or girl from a safe distance. Designating time in the day to have family and friends give their well wishes, watch them open their presents from afar and just generally make sure they feel loved and fussed over is key during this time. (Just remember that little ones aren’t naturally patient so iron out any technical difficulties quickly!)
Their Favourite Things
Ask your child what they hope for their birthday and make sure they get to enjoy all of their favourites, from foods and drinks to activities. Use favourites when theming the decorations and planned activities. There is plenty of fun to be had inside such as treasure hunts and family games and it’s now okay to take it to the garden or the local park for some sports or a picnic.
Virtual Day Trips
If you had some plans that now can’t go ahead, check to see if there is a virtual option of doing it before you call it off completely. For example, lots of places such as zoos and tourist attractions have live feeds or virtual tours that you can easily access online for free.
We know that it’s challenging for a lot of parents right now and it’s easy to focus on all of the things that you can’t do for them such as invite their friends over and have the usual fun of bouncy castles, pass the parcel and gift bags (way too much communal touching when we think about it now!) but focus on the positives. Your little one is likely thrilled that they don’t have to go to school, can spend all day doing what they love, and they have both of their parents together at home making a fuss of them! We can still make great memories during this time and you’re doing great!