Birthday Fun: Teen Edition {Without an Eye Roll}


We try our best to make birthdays special at our house. This is not an easy task when dealing with teens. What used to be the best day ever is now just “lame.” The last few years I’ve resorted to allowing the birthday kid to invite a friend or two to lunch and a fun outing. But this year, I felt like my kids needed more, so I decided I was going to put in the effort to have a fun day for my daughter’s birthday.

I decided to go with a trend we saw on social media called THIS or THAT.


My daughter hates making decisions, so this was right up her alley to not have to choose anything for an entire day. She just had to point to a card out of two choices and that was where we went.

Her actual birthday was on a weekday, and we homeschool, so we decided to just do it up on her actual birthday with a few homeschool friends. (Her dance friends who were stuck at school celebrated on the weekend with her.) We stuck to a half-hour radius of the Dayton area. We decided on a few categories for the day and away we went.

Next, I researched the tar out of every option I could for these categories to figure out what would best suit my girl, her friends, and our family. Here is how the day went:

Coffee Shop

The choices she had were Café 19 in Englewood or Vallery Farmhouse Bakery in London, as both offered coffee flights and she has always wanted to try a coffee flight. Her dad and I started our day celebrating our little girl at Café 19. She chose a Roulette Flight where the barista chose four flavors for her, and she also had a huge breakfast sandwich. The staff and all of the guests sang happy birthday to her. On the way out, a lady mentioned there was a mimosa flight at a place called redBERRY in Troy, which made me stifle a giggle. We grabbed a sandwich to-go for her brother at home, said goodbye to dad, and continued our day.


My baby loves a good crispy chicken sandwich, so I chose Cheddars in Centerville and redBERRY in Troy (hence the giggling). We picked up one of her friends and she chose her lunch. It ended up being redBERRY! Her brother met us there and she chose a burger instead of the chicken sandwich but enjoyed every bite anyway.


Go-karts and pool/karaoke are right up her alley, so the options were Scene75 or Round1. She chose Scene75 and we rolled over there to meet another friend. Unfortunately, they weren’t open yet, so a mom-fail on my part meant we couldn’t do Scene75. But we picked up her other friend and headed over to Round1 where they played pool and some fun arcade games.

Sweet Treat

For this, there were honestly too many options, so I just opted for cupcakes or donuts and listed places near locations we might be. She chose cupcakes, which meant we headed to Nothing Bundt Cakes and each girl got her own personal bundtlet. They scarfed down the bundtlets at Barnes and Noble where they got a bonus drink at Starbucks. Then we drove her friends home, picked up grandma and her brother, and headed to dinner.


The choices were Chili’s or Archer’s. Chili’s was the chosen dinner and we met the rest of our family there to end the night with a celebratory family meal, where my girl ordered her crispy chicken sandwich and some skillet queso.

It was a really fun day for my daughter and her friends, and I honestly enjoyed planning it and seeing the girls enjoy themselves. I highly recommend trying this option if you might have a teen that is looking for a little fun and adventure on their birthday. And I am always scouting for new ideas for both my daughter and son for their birthdays, so drop some ideas below!

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Tiffany Rosengarten is a homeschool mom of two who has lived in Dayton, Ohio on and off since preschool. With a dad in the military, she traveled to many places, but somehow always ended up back at Dayton, Ohio and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. When her dad retired here, she graduated from Fairborn High School and then went on to get both her Bachelor and Masters of Education from Wright State University. After a few years teaching for the district where she graduated as well as Sinclair and Wright State, she decided to teach the future leaders living in her very own home. She now splits her time between homeschooling, driving kids to activities such as swim, dance, and other training, and volunteering at 4 Paws for Ability in Xenia, Ohio. She currently is fostering Service Dogs in Training numbers four and five. Other interests she has include healthy living, some sewing/crafting, and reading a good book now and then when there is ever a few minutes to spare. Between her travels, education and homeschooling, she has been able to find out that Dayton is a pretty awesome place to live with hidden gems in science, history, art, theater, sports, and everything in between.