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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Watkins

10 ways to make a birthday special during quarantine

Updated: Aug 23, 2021

I don't know about you, but it seems like everyone and their mother are born during the spring months. Yes, that includes my mother's birthday later this month, mine in early May and my dad's mid-may (but who's counting)?

This spring, birthdays will obviously look a little bit different. No special restaurant dinners, weekend trips to the beach or nights out with friends. However, that doesn't mean that we have to skip our special days entirely, right?

And although it seems weird to even try to celebrate during such a somber time, I believe that celebrating the birthday of someone you love can be a great way to take your mind off things and spread positivity during this difficult time.

So, if your birthday is coming up or the birthday of your loved one is soon approaching, I've brainstormed 10 ways to make a quarantine birthday a special one.

1. breakfast in bed

I mean, who doesn't love breakfast in bed? This idea is especially perfect for couples. Start your loved one's day off right with a special surprise and bring them their favorite breakfast food in bed. Bonus points if you go all out and make a pancake or waffle charcuterie board for you to enjoy together for a lazy morning.

2. set up a "theater" for a movie marathon night

A movie night is a great option for quarantine, since we already stuck at home. However, it's easy to turn an average night of watching movies into a birthday bash. Make your movie night more festive by popping fresh popcorn, lighting some candles and adding some cozy blankets and pillows to the mix. You can even set up a cute candy bar stand (or table) with everyone's favorite movie candy. However you decide to do it, just make sure to watch whatever movie the birthday boy/girl wants to ifs, ands or buts!

3. fancy dinner & dessert (duh)!

This one probably goes without saying, but a special dinner and dessert is certainly in order for birthday gal/guy! Either cook their favorite meals from scratch or choose a local restaurant for curbside pick-up. In addition to serving them a delicious meal, you can up the ante by decking out your dinner table in decor. You have a few options here:

-Bring out any fancy tablecloth you may have and cloth napkins; make them feel like they are at a fancy restaurant!

-Decorate your table with framed photos of the birthday boy/girl from over the years to create a conversation-starter centerpiece

-Go all out with a theme and order decor online (if you know me, mine will probably be cacti-themed)

4. birthday photo shoot

This idea may be particularly popular with the little ones or teenagers concerned with keeping their 'gram game alive from home! Pick a section of your house for a full-out photo shoot; I'm talking streamers, blow-up balloons and even props, if you are feeling it. Taking photographs on birthdays is really important to me because you are able to capture memories that you can cherish forever. Plus, someday, the birthday boy/girl can tell their grandchildren about the time they spent their birthday in quarantine during a pandemic. Speaking of conversation-starters...

5. spa day

Maybe you just need a day to chill out. I know I do! This option is great for people of all ages and honestly, in this state of the world right now, this idea could be beneficial to many. Have the whole family/your roommate squad/ significant other transform a room in your house into a relaxing spa. When it comes to pampering your woman/man of the hour, there are endless options to choose from:


-DIY face masks (peep the cucumbers for the eyes)


-Homemade sugar scrubs

-Foot massages

And be sure to set the mood with relaxing meditation music and break out the room diffuser, if you have one!

6. family game night

There's also nothing wrong with a good old-fashioned game night. Either play a game of cards or a board game with those living with you or get relatives/friends involved with a virtual game night. Some virtual games that you can play online include: Cube Slam,, Battleship and Jackbox party games (this one costs money). You can learn more about how to play the Jackbox party games here.

7. karaoke/ dance party

Or maybe you just need to break out the tunes and have a karaoke/ dance party! If you have a karaoke video game at home, great. Alternatively, you can use an app to connect with friends from the outside world! For a dance party, pretty much anything goes. If you want to go all out, there are tons of live D.J. sets happening on social media these days!

8. birthday present scavenger hunt

Here's another great idea for the younger birthday boys/girls out there. Make present-opening more exciting and create a scavenger hunt with birthday presents scattered around the house. Not only will this make a birthday in quarantine more memorable, but it's another way to stay active from inside your house, too.

9. choose your own adventure day

Photo Credit: The Dating Divas

This idea requires a lot of planning. However, if done right, it can turn out to be a huge success. Choose Your Own Adventure games have made a comeback recently (hello Black Mirror's Bandersnatch), and they could make for a great birthday theme, too! Set of a series of questions for the birthday gal/guy on how they want to go about their day. In a time where we feel like we don't have many choices right now or things to do, this idea could be great for someone who has been stir-crazy at home. Go the extra mile and design fun cards to use for the game. Here are some ideas for game cards:

-Pancakes or Waffles for breakfast?

-A walk around the neighborhood or a movie marathon inside?

-Virtual happy hour with friends or scrapbook time with the family?

10. backyard picnic party

This is a simple and easy birthday idea that you can replicate at home to make someone's birthday feel even more special. Set up a picnic blanket in your backyard and host a cute picnic with your quarantine buddies/partner. Stock a wicker picnic basket with their favorite foods, from candy to their favorite sandwiches. If they are of age, throw in their favorite alcoholic beverage of choice. Side note: I've found that being outside in the sun during quarantine can also be a great mood-booster!

There you have it. Those are 10 of my ideas to celebrate a birthday in quarantine. Although it seems like options are very limited at the moment, there are still a ton of ways to make someone's birthday feel special while staying at home. Trying any of these ideas or even getting a group involved to coordinate a neighborhood birthday drive-by are all ways to show your loved ones how much you appreciate them.

Are you planning on trying out one of these ideas yourself? If so, tag me on social media so I can share your quarantine parties on the blog and spread some positivity during this difficult time.

Take Care,



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