Recently it was my birthday and one of my friends asked me the question on the day- are you having a minimalist birthday? I thought about this for a moment or two and then decided with a resounding yes that I was. Might I add, this was for several reasons and no it’s not just about the gifts.
Whilst the gifts I received I would indeed classify as ‘minimalist’ e.g.: they are useful, practical and perfectly fit my needs (and are few in quantity) there are many other aspects of my birthday that I would consider to be minimalist. Whilst it has not been all about the presents (like when I was young), but mostly about the experiences. I had several dinners at some of my favorite restaurants with family and close friends with some very enjoyable food and conversations. All in all, very memorable evenings.
Further, I wasn’t lucky enough this year for my birthday to fall on a weekend so I had to go into work. But I was very surprised to come into a small very thoughtful gift from one of my work friends and also to find my desk covered in streamers and balloons from two others. All were a lovely touch to the day and definitely brought a smile to my face. There’s certainly nothing like pink balloons to brighten up a stressful day at the office.
For my birthday night my other half also asked me what I wanted to do that evening. I chose to have his home made pulled-beef pasta sauce and go for an evening walk. What was more important to me above everything was just spending time together (seeing as we had both been at work all day).
My day was also filled with cake and I was lucky enough to enjoy two birthday cakes (okay two might not be exactly minimalist as it was more than what I needed) HOWEVER, cake is a consumable so it still counts (and I shared). One of them my boyfriend even made for me as a surprise which I was extremely grateful for as it couldn’t have been more unexpected.
Finally, a small group of friends and I throw minimalist birthday parties for each other. These are not out at a fancy restaurant, but at one of our houses, we each bring a plate and share who is in charge of decorations, lolly bags and cake (okay so there was a third cake I lied…). It’s always a great afternoon of catching up and eating a little too much. But it’s thoughtful and I get to see friends who I wish I could see more of.
Hopefully you have noticed a pattern, a pattern that shows what I enjoyed most about my birthday. I did not receive a lot of ‘stuff’ but small thoughtful gifts and lots and lots of valuable moments and experiences with friends and family (okay and excessive amounts of cake too). But this is what I found made me the most happy throughout the day, is that people were willing to take the time to make sure I had a good day and it didn’t exactly cost the earth nor did it fill my shelves full of stuff. What I was left with were good memories that brought a smile to my face.
How do you celebrate a minimalist birthday?