No matter your age or situation, you can still find epic things to do on your birthday – but it all comes down to you (of course).
Listen, it’s no surprise that as you get older, your birthday becomes less of an event. Now, you’ve got a family to feed, kids to tote around, and your own to-do list at home or work.
…but, for just one day, focus on what you want – and then, make it happen.
Once you’ve honed in on your answers, you are well on your way to the BEST BIRTHDAY PLAN whether you’re in your 30s or beyond!
Before we jump in, just remember to have some realistic expectations for your day – and be willing to work with what you’ve got.
For example, I would love to spend my birthday with my extended family, but since they’re across the country, it just isn’t possible. But I can FaceTime with them or talk on the phone throughout the day! It’s not my perfect solution, but it gets the job done.
You know your schedule and your budget; now you just have to make the most of it.
And pro-tip: I find the best way to have epic things to do on your birthday is to extend the day into a week (or month – I am not judging). That way, you open up the timeframe for celebration. Let yourself count all of the AWESOMENESS that occurs surrounding your birthday, not just on the day itself.
You probably don’t need to think about this one too much. What do you love in this world? (Note: this isn’t who you love – that part will come later!)
Whatever your answers, find ways to incorporate the things you love into epic things to do on your birthday! 15 minutes of Self-Care, anyone!?
If you love cars – maybe you could rent a car for the day! Or even just “window shop” for new vehicles online. You could get a new bumper sticker for your ride! Or take it in for detail service. THERE ARE A MILLION WAYS TO CELEBRATE THE THINGS YOU LOVE! …and they can all fit into your epic birthday plan!
Surround yourself with the people that make your world brighter when celebrating your birthday!
If you can, schedule a special girls’ night during your birthday week! Or maybe have a date night with your hubs. FaceTime those favorite people that you can’t physically see. And make special arrangements for your must-have friends.
Maybe you can’t rearrange your whole day, because of work or schedules – but you can definitely tuck in some happy family/friend moments throughout! This might take a little planning, but it will be worth it to spend time with the people who matter most. Can you take a special call on your lunch break? Or join your kids for a treat after school?
Again, this is where the birthday week is a great idea. If you can get yourself into that mindset, you will have bunches of opportunities to make time for those special few.
Birthdays are absolutely a time to splurge and celebrate! They only come around once a year, so you should be able to fully enjoy whatever you choose!
What is a must-have treat for your special day? Do you need to special order it – or can you pick it up easily? Does it need to be prepared ahead of time?
I am obsessed with sweet treats, so birthdays are the perfect time to indulge on my favorites! I usually let my husband and kids pick out the treats for the day, but if you are pickier – be sure to speak up to your family! They will want to bring you something that you will love!
ALSO, don’t forget to sneak a special dessert (or meal!) into your lunchtime routine! If you’re stuck at work or wrapped up in a busy to-do list, it will be a great surprise!
If you had no other obligations, how would you like to spend your time on your birthday? Would you go on an adventure – or cuddle up with a good book? Would you sleep-in or go catch the sunrise on the beach?
If you know how you’d like to spend your time, try to find simple ways to make that happen. You might not have a whole day off from your daily schedule – but you can always squeeze in moments here and there.
Give yourself a dedicated “birthday hour” after the kids go to bed, or before they wake up. Have a plan and stick to it. Want to watch a movie? Don’t worry about the dishes for one day. Just make the birthday bash happen!
This year, I turned 34! …and, as we all know, my actual birthday was not all about me. In fact, I had to go to the car dealership and the DMV, followed by two kid pick-ups at school, and then karate. I even had to make dinner for the family. (Ha!)
…but the days surrounding my birthday were filled with epic events! And I made the squeezed-in moments of my actual birthday count, too.
There’s a lot that I love! Family and sweets and musical theatre and books and on and on and on.
This year, I went to visit my extended family in Chicago a few days before my birthday! I got to see my Grandma and a very special Aunt. We lounged around, ate wonderful food, and even went to see Hamilton at the theatre!
That trip alone covered the things I love!
My kids! …and my husband! …and my parents! …and my siblings! …and my friends!
But that is just not possible!
Fortunately, I live in the same house with my little ones and hubs. (That’s good!) I was able to call my folks and my sister. My brothers both sent a text. And my friends decorated my Facebook wall with well wishes.
Throughout the day, there were many quick connections with the people I love. Even if they were simple moments. Each and every one made my birthday a little bit brighter.
I’ve said it before – and I’ll say it again: I love treats.
So, my husband ran out early in the AM to grab donuts at our favorite little shop! The kids were so excited to have a sweet treat for breakfast!
One of my birthday presents was a special delivery of Chicago Deep-Dish pizzas straight from Lou Malnati’s – and we even made a stop at the BEST cupcake shop! My freezer is now jam-packed with birthday deliciousness that I can enjoy for months!
If I had the day off from everything, I think I would like to do a lot of nothing: sleep in, read, watch a movie, etc.
But instead, my day was filled with normal “mom chores” – and, you know what? That was perfectly great with me.
Throughout every mundane chore or moment, I was reminded how lucky I am to have what I have. Laundry? Praise God for the babes who wear the clothes you have to fold. Dishes? How lucky we are to have lots of yummy food to eat. Car wash? Thank goodness for this awesome vehicle to take us from place-to-place.
Sometimes the simple acts can illuminate the greatness of the big picture.
In the end, I think birthdays have taken a new shape as we continue to get older (and older)! …but as long as you remember to make yourself a priority here and there, your birthday can still be a pretty special celebration!
And remembering to celebrate yourself is always a pretty epic thing to do!
Katie Johansen is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University with her M.A.Ed in Children’s Literature. She spent 6 years as an elementary school teacher in South Florida before transitioning to stay-at-home #momlife. Now, it’s all things PB&J – with an extra large cup of coffee on the side.