Birthdays are a special occasions and naturally lend themselves to family traditions. Of course the our version of Elf On The Shelf features in our traditions. This blog post shares a few of the traditions that make our family birthdays special.
Birthday cards are the first thing to be opened . We have a tradition that the cards are all delivered by Postman Pat and Jess the Cat. Even the adults and older kids don’t escape this tradition. The large Postman Pat and Jess toys were purchased from Makro around 14 years ago and he has made an appearance at every family birthday since.
When the children were born we made each of them a Build A Bear. Every birthday they come out and wear the birthday bear outfit and sit with their birthday gifts. At Christmas they are dressed in their festive clothes and sit on top of their Christmas gift bags. Even though the kids are all getting older now they still like to keep the birthday bear tradition. I’m sure I’ll still be doing it until they leave home.
Elf On The Shelf Birthday Tradition
We don’t have the official Elf on The Shelf but I couldn’t resist purchasing the Elf on The Shelf Birthday Tradition. It was very reasonably priced in The Works it was around £6. The box contains a birthday costume for the elf, consisting of a fabric party hat and cupcake outfit. The box also contains a book explaining the elf on the shelf birthday tradition. For birthdays our elf Noel who stays with us all year round manages to squeeze into the costume. The story explains the elf will arrive and decorate a birthday chair or area with balloons and banners rather than bring gifts. I found a reusable balloon decoration to use each year with the elf. It lights up different colours and can be used with music so the balloons would flash and change colour with the beat.
The lucky birthday boy or girl gets the great honour of opening their gifts wearing a very fetching birthday hat. We have a tiara style crown and a plush birthday cake hat which we have been using every year since George was born. Like the Postman Pat tradition the adults in the family don’t get to escape this tradition.
Henry’s birthday is on Boxing Day so we have to try and make his birthday feel different from Christmas. So far he likes having a Christmas Birthday even if it does mean he waits a whole year between celebrations.
On Christmas night once the kids are in bed we take down the Christmas cards and clear as much space amongst the Christmas chaos as we can. The Christmas tree is decorated with banners and sometimes balloons and the Christmas cards are replaced with birthday banners.
We try and go out for the day on his birthday so it feels different from the Christmas celebrations. Our options are limited as most places are closed but we have always found a good film at the cinema, a special birthday breakfast out, Chessington Zoo or watching our football team play are all things we have done in previous years.
Portable North Pole
Even my two children with summer birthdays get a little bit of Christmas magic on their birthday, courtesy of the Portable North Pole. If you haven’t used it before the Portable North Pole is a website / app we have used for many years. You can create personalised videos from Father Christmas with your own photos and messages. There are different scenes to chose from and free versions as well as premium options.
When we create our Christmas videos there is an option for a birthday video as well. Using your own photos the video is emailed to you just before your child’s birthday, ready to share with them. We purchase an annual pass each year which is good value and allows you to create unlimited videos and even phone calls from Father Christmas. In recent years there is an added option of recording your child’s reaction as they watch the video.
I like things we can use each year. I have been on the look out for a reusable birthday banner. We use the foil type banners and re-use as many times as possible but I’d love something similar that could be used for many years. I have only seen the bunting type re-usable banners which are too large for our space. Drop me a message if you have seen something that may be suitable as I’d love to find one.
Do you have any family birthday traditions?