Friday, March 18, 2011

Celebrating Your Angel's Birthday


I wanted to share a list of ideas for celebrating your angel's birthday.  Just because they are no longer around physically, does not mean that this day can no longer be celebrated.  I know some people are a little surprised that we celebrate Devon's birthday every year but most are very understanding.  It's a very personal thing for each person, family and circumstance. However, it has been a wonderful and meaningful tradition for our family.  Below are a few ideas for ways to celebrate and honor your child on their birthday.

1. Have a party.  Make it complete with cake, ice cream and the works.  Sing Happy Birthday to your child.  You can make this party a celebration of your child's life.

2.  Make and watch a slide show of pictures of your child.  Talk and reminisce about them.


3.  Have a balloon release in their honor.  You can have each person release a balloon or you can release the same number of balloons as the age of your angel.  You can write special messages to your angel on the balloon or attach a note if you'd like.


4.  Plan a service project in honor of your angel.  Print off a service card to give to those your are serving.  A few ideas for service projects are...... donate to a food bank, donate to the NICU, help at a food kitchen for the homeless, bake cookies for your local police/firemen, help out an elderly neighbor with yard work or shopping, donate a bear to another angel family, donate to a cause or foundation that is meaningful to you in your child's name, give books/stuffed animals to your local children's hospital, dedicate a day to random acts of kindness in honor of your angel, donate gifts you would have been purchasing for your child to a child in need of the same age.

5.  Visit the your child's grave or the location where you spread their ashes and sing them Happy Birthday.  Leave a note or memento for them.  Decorate their grave with balloons, stuffed animals, or other meaningful items.

6.  Keep a journal for your child.  Every year on their birthday make an entry.  Tell them how you are feeling, how much you miss them, what you think they would have been doing at this age, what is going on in your life, etc.  


7.  Go somewhere special or meaningful to you and your angel for their birthday.  Perhaps a cabin on the lake, camping in the mountains, sitting on a special beach.

8.  Participate in a 5k, 10k, triathlon, or marathon around your child's birthday.  Make a t-shirt stating you are running in memory of your child and personalize it how you'd like.  Invite others to come and run in honor or your child.  Make them identical shirts too.


9.  Plant a tree, flower, or flowering shrub in honor of your child.  Make a butterfly garden, or plant flowers that will bring hummingbirds.

10.  Create a work of art for your child.  You don't have to be an artist to do this.  Write them a poem, paint a picture, sculpt with clay, make them a blanket, a photo collage.  Express your feelings of both joy and grief through art.

What do you do on your angel's birthday?  I'd love for you to share and I'll add it to the list if it's not already on there!

18 comments:

Holly said...

All great ideas! For Carleigh's 1st birthday we had a big party! We are having another party this year but much smaller and then the day of her birthday we are taking off work and going somewhere.

Caz said...

Hey for Anabelle's 1st Birthday in June this year we are holding a fundraising event for Sands (stillbirth and neonatal death charity). We are starting off with a sponsored walk (17 themed to represent the 17 babies that die in the UK every day) on the 17th June and then on the 25th we are holding an birthday party angel day fete full of stalls, games, a raffle and other activites to celebrate her birthday, honour and remember all angel babies and raise money! We have a £1000 target and so far have already had £345 donated! :) Had lots of raffle prizes donated from companies and attractions across the UK too! Its going to be the best birthday party for Anabelle ever! I blogged about it originally here -
http://cazandbelle.blogspot.com/2010/12/anabelles-angel-day.html

and a small update here.
http://cazandbelle.blogspot.com/2011/02/fundraising.html

I will update again soon!

On Anabelle's actual birthday (21st June) I will be going to her garden to read her the story (Guess How Much I love You) I promised her I would every year on her birthday and a release a pink heart balloon to her from me and her Daddy. I want to get her a small cake and blow out a candle for her and we might go out for a quiet meal too.

Great blog by the way. xx

Monica said...

Wow, I love it! What an awesome way to honor Anabelle!

Denise said...

I love many of these suggestions and as I plan a celebration for my son Julius in a few days I will incorporate a few of them. I want to mention that while balloon releases are beautiful and I see them mentioned often by angel families, Balloons are really bad for marine life. Balloons travel very far and often land in the ocean where turtles and seabirds mistake them for jelly fish. As an alternative I suggest eco lanterns. They are a beautiful alternative and the biodegrade. I would love to see angel families move in this direction. We have done several lantern launches as well as floating biodegradable lanterns both beautiful alternatives! Much Aloha!!!

Conors Garden said...

I would love to have some sort of celebration for my sons 1st birthday, suggestions?

SAI Cool said...

Happy special 1st birthday wishes and special birthday blessings for you.

jessie ray said...

We do a butterfly release. It's beautiful! Two of my daughters think the butterflies fly up to their sister, and on other days when they see butterflies, they think their sister in heaven sent it to them. It's so sweet, and much safer for animals, than balloons.

jessie ray said...

We do a butterfly release. It's beautiful! Two of my daughters think the butterflies fly up to their sister, and on other days when they see butterflies, they think their sister in heaven sent it to them. It's so sweet, and much safer for animals, than balloons.

Debbie Forrest said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

This year will be my son Ians' third birthday.Being born 9 weeks early, and sick with E.coli, I go around all of north Ga spreading the awareness of being pregnant and getting sick with E.coli. That's how he got it. I also go on the local radio to sing happy birthday to him. We also take a small cheesecake to his grave, along with new flowers, and talk to him. His birthday is the day after tomorrow, and I can't wait! We love you Ian! <3

dealstoall .com said...

A Person can merely enjoy two occasions relating to him/her personally.
One, is Birthday - a day in a year.
Another, is Marriage Day - A Day in a Lifetime.
Both are most precious ones, which stay memorable for a long time.

I wish you a very very
Happy Birthday to you and Birthday Wishes fill the life with joy and blessings.

Unknown said...

My daughter will be 2 in January and my mind and my heart just aches because i cant even figure out what i will be doing that day, She just oassed away this september on the 27th and as much as i want to do something big for her.. Idk if i can.. its so hard..

Unknown said...

The first birthday after we lost Reese would have been her 2nd birthday. It was about 5 months after her death, and we were still really, really raw. We planned an angel painting party at one of those Sip-n-Paint places, but during the afternoon. The artist that lead painted an angel that was something fun, little girly, bright, and easy to paint for all and modify to your 'vision.' Over 40 people came, from age 3 to age 77. It was hard, there were tears, but the artist kept things positive light, and we all found that we enjoyed ourselves and there was so much love in that room for my little angel. We poured our hearts into those paintings. As the last of us stepped outside afterwards, there was a huge rainbow right over us. Our angel was smiling down.

AmandaZ said...

We are planning our son's 5th birthday party this year. We just moved to a new community, where no one knew about our son, and it has been really hard. We've met a special group of people at our church who suggested we have a birthday party. I've never planned one before, so I was glad to find this article. Here are the things I'm planning:

Cake & Ice Cream
Chinese Flying Lanterns (I think someone above mentioned them as more ecofriendly - it's too cold for butterflies here!)
Time for singing - there are some songs I associate with my son's life and I want to share them
Photo-scavenger hunt - I'm going to come up with some clues of things that remind me of our son. When the party is over I'm going to collect and compile all the pictures into an album
Pay-it-forward - I'm going to make little party favors with the pay-it-forward card inside, so each person can carry our little guy with him into their week.


Last year we did a "virtual" party. We asked all of our family and friends through email & facebook to create something with our son's name in it and take a picture. I used play-doh, my husband took photos of different parts of musical instruments. We had friends use Scrabble pieces, legos, window markers, sidewalk chalk, beads, fabric - it was amazing. They all sent us these beautiful pictures and I made a Shutterfly book. It was so healing.

Tiffany Coats said...

I wanted to consider lanterns but it's illegal.

mark lawrence said...

I love all these ideas for these birthday celebrations. Thanks for this interesting share. Our own angel will be turning 4 soon and we have been planning a fun snow white themed bash for her but first of all we need suggestions for suitable San Francisco venues for that. I wonder if you can help.

Babs said...

I have been invited to a angel birthday party. As a guest I am unsure of what I am supposed to do. Do I bring a gift? It is the first birthday of my friend's grandson.

Janette said...

These are all great suggestions. This my dilemma and I hope someone might have a suggestion. We lost one of my twin granddaughters almost three years ago. So, how do we celebrate her birthday and also celebrate the surviving twin? They will be five this year. Thanks!

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