It’s that time of the year again when the special man in your life turns another year older, and each year it’s getting more and more difficult to make this birthday better than the last. Well, you’re not alone. On the 23rd of October, my boyfriend Kieran turned 22, and I wanted to make the day special for him. Since his birthday fell on a Monday, we planned to see have his parents come to ours during the weekend. However, I knew I wanted his day to be full of surprises, so I got to planning…
My plan consists of 6 stages: gifts, card, decorations, cake, food and activity. If the 6 stages have been planned and completed, you’re bound to have the best day with your loved one, trust me. It has been trialled and tested for years by yours truly.
Boys boys boys… They can seem like the hardest people to buy for, when in reality it is a lot easier than you think. There are four things they can never have enough of: socks, boxers, T-shirts and aftershave. It’s like the golden rule of four for guys. If you want it to be a bit luxurious and you have the budget for it, make them a bit more fancy and designer – that’s what I did this year. If the man in your life that you’re buying for is a bit of a tech-lover, they will love little gadgets. One time I got him a remote-controlled helicopter and I have never seen a happier 20-year-old.
This year I got him a Tommy Hilfiger T-shirt and aftershave. I can 100% confirm that the aftershave is a gift from the aftershave gods because I have never smelt anything so divine. I ordered everything from ASOS, because how freakin’ convenient is that? Click here for some beautiful Tommy Hilfiger T-shirt options for the guy in your life. Trust me, he’ll love any of these! I also found a little Tommy Hilfiger gift-set, including the aftershave I got him! Click here, because you’ll probably love hugging him a thousand times more when he has this on.
A card is an absolute essential for a birthday. I always like to get him quirky and a bit funny ones, rather than smushy emotional ones because what I write inside always turns very soppy anyway. Central 23 make the best birthday cards ever. I got him a DJ Khalid one, because I found it surprisingly hilarious. Shop all of the Central 23 birthday cards here, including the one I got my boyfriend.
I always always always give the card to him at midnight with the presents. This year he begged to get his presents early and I caved in and gave them to him, but I kept the card to give to him with some Krispy Kreme doughnuts at midnight. It makes that moment that little bit extra special.
I always like to decorate during the day, when he’s away at university. Maybe in your case you need to send him out to spend time with a friend, or maybe he’s at work. Either way, take at least 2 hours to get your place decorated. I always think it’s going to be a 10-minute process and then end up running around like a headless chicken with confetti in my hair and sellotape stuck to me.
I tend to get most of my decorations from the Card Factory. In order for it to look a bit more sophisticated and cohesive, I tend to stick to a theme. This year I went for silver and blue. I got a pack of three Happy Birthday banners for 99p (barrrrgain!) and some silver and blue metallic balloons (99p for a pack of 6, so affordable) from the Card Factory. Then I head into Tesco to get some blue-themed confetti, and of course, some birthday candles! P.S. make sure you get your decorations at least a day before, as you don’t want to panic on the day when you can’t find everything you need.
Getting the perfect cake is like the heart of the birthday. Conveniently, I got contacted by bakerdays, who offer a large variety of personalised cakes for any occasion. They even have a letterbox cake service, which means they make a cake and send it your way, and it arrives through your letterbox so you don’t have to be at home to receive it. This is perfect for when you’re busy, or spend most of your day at work.
I chose to go with a blue-themed but still humorously designed cake. Click here to shop the one I chose! I ended up going with a dairy-free sponge cake, and oh my gosh, it tasted insane, and I am not just saying that because they kindly gifted the cake to us. Their online ordering service is super easy to use, there’s a variety of flavours, dairy-free options, designs, and it’s overall a fab company to use. My boyfriend absolutely loved it and I will definitely order from them again! I mean, look at the cute picture I chose to be put on it of my boyfriend, it can’t get any better than that.
Food is the love of a man’s life. Well, hopefully the second love. Think about what your partner’s favourite food place is. No, not yours, this is no time to be selfish. My boyfriend absolutely loves Pizza Hut. Not going to lie, I love their pizzas too, so it’s really a win-win situation. I ended up ordering two veggie pizzas and some nachos to arrive before he got home. This was probably the best part of the birthday, because who doesn’t love pizza, am I right?
You can, of course, take him out to eat. It honestly depends on what the man in your life prefers the most. Last year I took him out to Harvester, and it was amazing! So it completely depends.
Last but not least, an activity. I didn’t want him to have to stay at home all day on his birthday so I decided to take him somewhere. I knew he wanted to see the new Johnny English film at the cinema, so I booked some tickets and surprised him when he came home by giving him the tickets. Of course, that also involved the yummiest cinema snacks and Tango Ice Blast. The perfect end to a special day. Other possible activities are going bowling or to the Theatre, of course that depends on your budget and what you actually enjoy doing.
Whatever you do, do it with love. You don’t have to spend a fortune to make the day special. Do what you both enjoy, and have fun doing it.
Be kind, be humble.