2nd Birthday Ideas – 11 Party Themes [+ Expert Tips]

Looking for 2nd birthday ideas or 2nd birthday party themes for your soon to be two year old? Turning 2 is a major milestone for both your toddler and you – their parents!

Your child’s first and second birthday can be hard to know what to do to make them special. They’re too little to really understand what is happening but you still want your 2 year old’s birthday to be fun! With our first child I had to get creative with 2nd birthday ideas.

2nd birthday ideas - 5 Tips for Celebrating Your 2 Year Old's Birthday

My oldest son always gets a bigger party with my whole family since my dad and mom’s birthday are right after his birthday.

Because of that, the day of his birthday is just our immediate family. And since Rishi (aka Dad) has to go to work, it’s kinda like a normal day for us!

And let’s be real, is there anything worse than a birthday that doesn’t feel like a birthday?! Especially when you’re TWO? 🙂

Roy is still talking about my birthday which was months ago because we didn’t have birthday hats, sing Happy Birthday, or open presents! It traumatized him. 😉 I had to make sure we did at least a few fun things!

If you have a birthday coming up and in need of some 2nd birthday ideas, here are some fun, easy and inexpensive ways to celebrate your little one and make the day a little bit more fun!

But first up, a few tips from a mom of 3!

3 Tips for a 2nd Birthday

Birthdays can be stressful, here’s some ways to keep it fun!

1. Keep it Simple

Don’t stress over the perfect cake, the best balloon garland or a perfectly clean home! Keep it simple, that includes guests!

2. Remember Your Kid’s Schedule

If nap time is from 10-12, don’t plan on cake and presents at 11! We like to have guests arrive while our kids are napping. Then we can eat and chat and once the birthday kid is up they’ll be well rested for the festivities!

3. Keep it Toddler-Friendly

Toddler friendly food (don’t only have adult food and pre-cut it so you don’t have to spend your time cutting up their meal), 2 year old appropriate games and space for them to run around (especially after the sugar kicks in).

And now, let’s chat through 5 super simple ways to celebrate your 2 year old on their birthday, regardless of whether or not their birthday party is on the day of their birthday!

2nd Birthday Ideas – 5 Ways to Celebrate!

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1. Fill their crib with balloons.

In can be hard to know what to do for a 2 year old’s birthday so let’s start with something easy – balloons!

Filling your freshly turned 2 year old with balloons is a fun way to start the day! Blow up 5, 10 or even 20 balloons and fill your little’s ones crib when they wake up!

what to do for a 2 year old birthday

Last year, when Roy turned 1, I blew up a bunch of balloons and filled his crib with them when he woke up. Something so easy and inexpensive turned into (literally) hours of entertainment for him!

This year I did the same thing and again, he loved it. Actually, I’m pretty sure he loved it even more since he could run around the crib and throw and kick the balloons everywhere!  

We like to blow up balloons randomly throughout the year so I like to get some with confetti inside as a special treat since he loves those! They’ll spend a ton of time playing with the confetti balloons, almost like their trying to figure out how it got inside!

Balloons in the crib is a great way to begin celebrating your 2 year old's birthday!

If you plan on doing this, do yourself a favor and buy one of these electric balloon blowers! They’re so inexpensive and when you think about how many birthdays you’re going to celebrate, most of which will include balloons, you’ll be so thankful you had one!

I made about 3 balloon arches before I got an electric balloon blower and I was kicking myself I didn’t get it early – it makes it go so fast!

2nd birthday ideas

One tip is to blow up all the balloons and put them in a laundry basket (or 2) the night before. Then you’re not rushing to get them blown up if you’re 2 year old happens to wake up early on their birthday!

You can also do a whole balloon garland!

2. Go out for donuts!

Can you go wrong with donuts?? Head out and visit your favorite local bakery (or even the grocery store if there’s no bakery close to you) and let your 2 year old pick out their own donut for a special treat!

We rarely go out for donuts during the week. Rishi will take Roy out for donuts after his gymnastics class on the weekend but we never do that during the week.

Take your toddler out for a donut to celebrate your 2 year old's birthday!

On our kids’ birthday I have to let my Type A personality chill out and let them pick whatever donut they want…even if it’s full of chocolate or gigantic or topped with a million crazy things!

On Roy’s 2nd birthday I needed to put the rules aside and let him eat just the icing and not much else. After all, it’s his birthday and that only comes around once a yer!

3. Visit the fire station.

Is there anything more fun than a giant red truck with lights for a toddler?

We live just a few blocks from the local fire station. I’ve never been there but figured it couldn’t hurt to stop in and ask to see the fire truck since Roy is obsessed with “big trucks” lately.

They were SO nice. They showed him the truck, turned on the lights, pulled out their helmet for him to try on (he was NOT a fan of that haha) and even gave him a sticker and coloring book!

If you don’t live walking distance to one, just give them a call and see if you can stop by! Even a quick 15 minute visit can be really special for a 2 year old. In fact, almost a year later, Roy still talks about it!

An fun thing to do to celebrate your two year old's birthday is go to the fire station!

4. Go to the {nice} park.

Make an effort and go to the nice park. You know the one. The one with multiple play areas, a splash pad or something that your 2 year old really loves.

Let’s face it. If you’re anything like me, you go to the most convenient park. We have one a block from our house so we go to that one frequently but don’t always head the extra 5 blocks to the bigger park with tons more to do.

We went to the bigger park (where they actually have swings, things to dig with a smaller, toddler appropriate slides) and Roy was in heaven!

5. Have a dance party!

Turn on T Swift, Bruno Mars, Laurie Berkner or whoever your kiddo is loving these days and dance it out!

Roy’s a big fan of music and dancing (I would venture to guess most kids like it too). Nothing beats a good dance party to end the birthday celebrations!

Birthdays of every age deserve to be celebrated. I hope these 5 simple ideas help you when you’re planning your 2 year old’s birthday celebration!

Two Year Old Birthday Party Ideas

2nd Birthday Ideas + 2 year old party themes

And if you need a few ideas on a fun, cheeky “two” theme for your child’s birthday, here 10 ideas for you!

1. Two Two (Tutu) Cute

Celebrate a two two cute birthday party with a fun tutu for the birthday girl, a tutu skirt for the food table (like this one from Amazon) and all things girly cute!

2. Taco two-sday

All things taco related! Have a taco bar to start off the party and follow up with Choco Tacos for dessert!

I found this adorable Taco Twosday balloon from etsy that would be perfect for your party! Pick up some Fiesta Maracas from amazon for your party favors and you’re ready to celebrate!

3. Two infinity and beyond

For the Toy Story fan in your family, have a “two-infity and beyond!” party! Dress up like Buzz Lightyear and decorate with all things Toy Story!

4. Two sweet

Have a dessert party! For food have donuts with sprinkles, decorate sugar cookies for your guests to take home (or eat!) and decorate the place with dessert decor like this adorable “two sweet” party balloons!

5. Two the moon

Two the moon is for your astronaut to be! Decorate with stars, planets and rocket ships. Have outer space activities like coloring sheets!

This Amazon party pack has everything you need to celebrate your little space lover!

6. Oh two-dles 

We attempted to do this for Penelope’s Minnie Mouse themed party (or check out Roy’s Mickey Mouse + bus (he wanted both!) party ideas)!

7. Two the zoo

Bust out all the animals! Put animal figures on your cake, decorate with all things animals and eat picnic style on the ground like the animals do!

8. Two the ocean

Head to the ocean for this “two the ocean” party! Decorate the place with mermaids and seashells or sharks and jellyfish!

9. Two beautiful/Two Handsome

For a little girls’ “two beautiful” party, bring out all the girly items! Decorate with flowers everywhere, encourage everyone to dress up in the Sunday best and have feather boas for everyone to wear.

For a little boys’ “two handsome party” do a similar thing! Bust out the bow ties and give everyone top hats to wear!

10. Tea for two

Host a tea party! Use the fine china (or plastic play china), have mini peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and tiny cookies.

11. Two Cool

Have a “two cool” party, and encourage everyone to wear sunglasses! This fun cake topper would be perfect for your fun day!

Balloon garlands make any party more fun so check out my balloon garland tutorial for an easy way to make one!

I also have a few gift guides like this 25 gifts for toddlers post or 5 children gifts that give back for some fun ideas on presents with a purpose!

Thanks so much for reading, sharing and following along!

About Jen

Jen is a mom of 3 who loves frozen cookie dough, plants and a generous pour of creamer in her coffee. Her biggest joy is helping others find joy in their life, style and home through tips, tutorials and encouragement. She also runs 2 additional blogs. Feel free to send Jen a message or join the fun on Instagram!

4 thoughts on “2nd Birthday Ideas – 11 Party Themes [+ Expert Tips]”

  1. Best article ever! I see so many articles saying you need to have a party and you need to have this and that. This so so nice and simple. Not to mention, my wallet is already happy lol. Thank you!


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