As a friend of Merci Maman, we asked Chelsea from Instagram account @chelsealouisewatson how she was celebrating her Scarlett’s first birthday in lockdown with the hope it can provide inspiration to anyone else with little birthdays approaching fast! She’s given us her top tips below with how she celebrated her little girl’s big day…
I’m not going to lie when we realised that we would be celebrating our daughter's 1st birthday in lockdown I was really sad. Sad that she wouldn’t get the big party that we had planned and sad that she wouldn’t get to see all of her favourite people on such a special day. I decided that instead of being upset about what we couldn’t do; we would make sure that her day was as amazing as we could!
So here are 7 ways to make lockdown celebrations special:
1. Start the day with a special breakfast! One of the most important things to me was that it didn’t feel like a “normal” lockdown day so what better way to start the celebrations! We stayed in our pyjamas and reminisced about what we would have been doing a year ago. Scarlett was thrilled to have breakfast all together and only half ended up on the floor!
2. Dress up or dress down? Want a PJ day? Throw a PJ party! Fancy dressing up? Today’s the perfect excuse. We went for the latter and decided we would use it as a reason to ditch the loungewear and chuck on something different. It only felt right as I was putting Scarlett in a tutu dress! I might have snuck my loungewear back on after a lot of cake…
3. Play some games! Admittedly we are limited with a one-year-old however she absolutely loves music and dancing so we made sure that this was a big part of her day! Is there anything better than a baby dancing?! Use at as reason to dig out the old games or find some online! What’s a celebration without games?!
4. Decorate! Scarlett was obsessed with the balloons and kept saying “wow” to everything so it was worth the last minute rush to buy decorations! You don’t even have to go crazy, a few balloons were all Scarlett was bothered about but the rest just made it feel special. You could even use lockdown time to make your own decorations!
5. Watch their favourite film or have a movie day! If Scarlett had been a little bit older we would have done a movie day where we brought the duvet downstairs, ate snacks all day and watched her favourite films. No rush to be anywhere – sounds perfect doesn’t it?!
6. Bake a cake – even if there’s only a few of you! Lockdown is the perfect time to get baking – I can’t stop! Even if you’re no Mary Berry, it’ll be appreciated nonetheless. If it doesn’t turn out great… cake smash?!
7. Make the most of it. It’s the perfect quality time together! No stress or anxiety that can come with hosting a party, no cleaning up or tonnes of prep beforehand! You get to spend the day celebrating what a birthday is truly about.
I can honestly say that although it wasn’t what we had planned, it was more special than I could have imagined. Scarlett didn’t stop smiling and squealing all day. We phoned and FaceTimed family which was lovely as I know it meant just as much to them to be able to see her. For most of the day we switched off and just enjoyed being together as a family, we reminisced about the last year and celebrated raising a human for 365 days!
I think it’s important to remember that there will be so many more parties full of family, party food and noise. We really got to enjoy the day with Scarlett and it’s a day we won’t ever forget. So to anyone that is celebrating a special occasion in lockdown – I promise it will still be magical xo