Birthdays give us a chance to have some fun. We get to write in a birthday card once a year for each of our friends. No one should have to stress out about figuring out what to write. Birthday wishes fall under a few different categories: sincere, funny, or encouraging.
The best messages are personal or have something to do with the person. If humor is appropriate, then you can use one of the funny examples below. If you are looking for sincere messages you will also find those examples. Then add something specific about the person when you write your message.
If you don't want to go with a funny message, you can use one of these more serious and sincere messages.
You wear your age well, and your age suits you.
Have an amazing birthday. I insist.
I hope that you have a wonderful __ birthday. May your celebration with all of your family and friends be wild and fun!
Happy Birthday! I am glad that you were born __ years ago.
Your life has been a blessing to many people. That's why I like to celebrate your birthday.
Happy Birthday! ...to one of the nicest people I know. You keep getting better and better with age.
I hope you have a great day today. Celebrate! It's your birthday!
Happy birthday to a great friend. I like your birthday. Without it, I would not have such a great friend. Have an awesome birthday!
You have been a great blessing to those you encounter.
Your birthday is my yearly reminder of how blessed I am to know you and to be able to call you my friend.
I hope you know that you are loved on your birthday.
May your birthday be the open door to a wonderful new year of life.
Even though you are another year older, you have plenty to look forward to this year.
The time we get is free, but it is also the most valuable thing we can have. Spend your next year wisely.
We become braver the older we get. Maybe that’s because we have less to lose.
Let’s celebrate the blessing that you have been during your entire life! Then let’s celebrate the blessing that you will be during the rest of your life.
I want to wish a happy birthday to one of the coolest people I know. Happy birthday to you!
I hope all of your birthday wishes come true.
I hope you have the kind of birthday that makes you feel as special as you are to me.
Have a memorable birthday. You only get to turn __ once in a lifetime.
Have a birthday filled with the gifts of friendship, fun, and happiness!
I am thankful to have you in my life not only on your birthday, but on every day of the year.
Have the kind of birthday that only someone like you could deserve. You deserve a really awesome one.
There are so many reasons I am grateful to know you. Your birthday is a good time to think of all those reasons.
Wishing you a happy birthday is easy, because I want you to be happy anyway.
I am really glad that you were born, because I have enjoyed you and your life.
You have been a blessing since your original birthday.
I hope you have a wonderful and fun day on your birthday.
I am wishing you many happy birthdays to come.
You make me feel really great when I am around you. I hope you have the same great feelings on your birthday.
Like a fine wine, you get better and more valuable with age.
Somehow you always make me feel young even though we are both getting older by the minute.
You are an amazing person, and this is the best day to celebrate you.
I can’t imagine you as a baby. I bet you were the same as you are now in a lot of ways.
Happy birthday and happy rest of the year!
Happy Birthday to one of my favorite people to be born!
If I get a birthday card, I always look forward to reading funny messages. Even though I've had some very inspirational, meaningful, and thoughtful sentiments written in my card, I especially like a good laugh. Humor is good for you too, so I’ll be around for even more birthday cards! Use one of these to give someone a laugh about his age or birth. Birthdays are a fun time to joke.
If I told you to have a happy birthday, would you actually take my advice?
Birthdays can be tough. That’s why I’m making sure that you don’t have to go through it alone.
Birthdays are like tax day. Those who have the most look forward to them the least.
If you ever start to regret getting older, just think of the alternative.
No one asks to be born, and no one asks to get old.
Don’t worry too much about getting older. No really! Worrying makes you even older.
It’s not your birthday. If you actually looked any older today, then I would believe that it is your birthday.
You can’t fill in your age on forms online because there aren't enough digits available.
There’s one wish that everyone can have come true on their birthday. Just wish to be older and your wish will come true.
As you age, it’s important to lower your expectations. Here’s to lowered expectations.
Making jokes about getting old is only appropriate and funny when people aren't really that old yet, so I’m going to just wish you a very serious happy birthday.
Just because you’re getting older doesn't mean you are growing up. Happy Birthday anyway!
I don’t know how many more of your birthdays I can handle.
Old is in the eye of the beholder, especially when you are looking in the mirror.
You can support the Democratic Party if you want, but I support the Birthday party.
If I made fun of how many years old you are, it would be beyond funny.
Death day gets closer with each birthday that passes.
Break a leg at your birthday party, but try not to break a hip.
You are the least famous person I know of who was born on your birthday.
I couldn't think of a message that would make you laugh for your birthday card. You’re too mature now.
You’re old enough to know better… than to expect any present from me.
Scientists have found a strong correlation between the number of birthdays you have and your life expectancy. Here’s to your growing life expectancy!
Some say “old is in the eye of the beholder.” I think it’s just cataracts.
Birthdays are really just a celebration for the lucky people who have managed to keep themselves alive another year.
You used to jump off the couch, jog five miles, and end with a snack in the kitchen. Now you use a short cut to the kitchen.
Each year you get a little further from acting your age. You’ll never grow old if you never grow up.
All the people I know who have had birthdays each year have eventually ended up dead. Birthdays must be bad for your health.
Elections come every year, and this year I am nominating you for the birthday party.
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I think birthdays may be an exception though.
You begin and end this life in an ironically similar disposition. You're dependent on others to feed you and dress you. You have to wear diapers. Here’s to the in between years.
You remind me of the big redwood tree that you can drive through in a car. You've been around forever, and you’re too stubborn and old to be going anywhere soon.
Doctors suggest staying out of the sun to avoid premature aging. You must have lived in a cave your entire life.
Everyone is aging every day, but we only celebrate it once a year. That doesn't seem fair. Does it?
You must have committed a crime. You had to have stolen someone else’s age. You don’t look like you age.
Aging is like a ride on a train. It seems like it takes forever to get going. Then it’s impossible to stop.
You’re old enough now that running your mouth is easier than running yourself anywhere.
If you were invisible, would you still look old today?
Your senses may not be as sharp as they were in your youth, but your wit is sharp enough to cut a person in half.
Lying about your age causes grey hair. Dying your hair is just an attempt to cover up your lies.
The older you get, the better you’ll be at history and math. You've lived more history and you have to count a lot higher to reach your age.
When you’re young, you’re scared of monsters under the bed. When you’re old, you’re scared of what the doctor just said.
How old would you be in dog years?
I’m wishing your life to be more like an epic novel than a short story!
Children have dreams. Adults have jobs. Are you an adult or a child at heart?
If you were a dinosaur today, you’d be the have-a-happy-birthday-saurus. And tomorrow you’d be extinct.
One of the biggest lies old people tell young people is that they can’t do the same stuff they used to be able to do. In reality, they just want to get younger people to do all the heavy lifting.
Your birthday is a wonderful time for me to tell you how amazing you are. Unfortunately, I’m not going to do that. You already know how I feel about you.
If you look back through all the years you've lived, the first thing you’ll notice is that you need a telescope.
How many years have you been my friend? Don’t answer that question. That gives away too much information.
Only a good friend will keep your darkest secrets. Don’t worry. Your age is a secret I’ll keep safe.
I don’t like that you’re getting older any more than you do. It sure does beat the alternative though.
Cake is a great way to celebrate getting older, which shouldn't be only reserved for birthdays.
Maybe we get a little carried away with throwing parties for people when they get a year older. Shouldn't people have to accomplish something to deserve a party?
If birthdays came any more often, we’d all be older and happier.
One day a year you get to celebrate your birth. The other 364 days a year you get to celebrate mine.
If birthday insurance was available, I’d buy you some. I want to ensure that you have a wonderful birthday!
Your birthday marks a great moment, it was the moment I got a cool sister. (to a sister)
I guess you're old enough to know... You were adopted, and you weren't really ever born. Just kidding. Happy Birthday! (to a brother or sister)
I hired a fire fighter to be on call for your birthday party, so it’s o.k. now to go ahead and light the candles.
Your birthday suit still looks good on you. It still looks like it has been neatly pressed.
Losing some of your visual acuity as you get older is nature’s way of hiding all of the wrinkles that you would see when you look in the mirror.
From the time of childhood, most people want toys for their birthday. Unfortunately, the price of those toys grows exponentially as they age.
If I got you an all expenses paid trip to anywhere, where would you choose to go? Traveling to the past when you were younger is not an option.
You know you're old when you hear your favorite song while you are riding the elevator. I heard your favorite song on the elevator.
Jokes about Being Old
These are some simple birthday jokes to add to your message. All of these start with “You might be getting old if…”
You can set up your own surprise birthday party
You choose your restaurant by levels of senior citizen discount.
The music in the elevator is too loud for you.
You can’t handle driving faster than your age in MPH.
Finding your keys becomes your daily exercise routine.
Everyone calls you sir or mam in the nursing home.
You don’t trust anyone under 70.
You blow out your candles wishing you didn't have to wear diapers.
You’re glad to be over the hill because it’s so difficult to breath.
The grim reaper comes to your birthday party.
Tips for Writing on a Card
When you write something in a birthday card, you can make it especially fun and personal by using these following tips. Each of these are options to enhance your message, and you choose which ideas work best.
First choose what type of message you need to write based on who you are writing the message for.
Make your message personal and thoughtful. Most people will overlook whether or not you spent time choosing the perfect card at the store, but they will almost always read the hand written message inside the card.
Think of things about the person that you can include to make it personal. Think of something personal about the person you are writing for. For example, maybe the person plays golf. Then you can wish them a happy birthday as it relates to golf. You could write: “I hope your birthday is much better than par. I hope it’s a hole in one.” Or for someone who plays guitar, you could write, “I hope your birthday rocks as much as you do!” Mention a positive quality about the person who is having a birthday. For example, you might write something like, “Your life has been a blessing to me here at work, because you bring a positive attitude to everything you do.”
Make a comment about the gift you got the person. For example, if you got the person a puppy you could write, “Let’s see if an old dog can teach a young dog some new tricks.”
Write on scrap paper first, so you can edit the message.
Be concise. People don’t want to read for more than about 30 seconds in a card, especially if they have several to read.
Proofread for confusing word choices or errors. These will make the message difficult to understand, or will make it a slower read. This can kill the joke.
Messages for Mom
"Mom, I want to let you know that you have been a great influence in my life, and you mean a lot to me. I hope you have a great birthday. Happy Birthday!"
"I hope you have a blast on your birthday. You always made my birthdays fun as a kid, and I appreciate that.
"Mom, it's a good thing you were born, because I wouldn't have been born if you hadn't. Happy birthday to you and me."
"The older I get, the more I realize that you are really smart, and that you have taught me a lot. I hope you realize that as you get older too. Happy Birthday!"
"I'm wishing a great mom a very happy birthday. You are the best mom I could have wanted."
"Mom, I love you more than I usually show you. You mean a lot to me, and I appreciate you being there for me. I am not sure what else to say except, Happy Birthday!"
What Not to Write
It's not possible to come up with a list of all the things that could possibly offend a person. Everyone is different, but some things are more likely to offend someone when written in a birthday card.
References to life expectancy are risky. Even though death is a natural process correlated with age, some people aren't as comfortable with reminders.
Overly raunchy jokes are not just risky. They are risque. Birthdays are a good time to have fun. However, dirty jokes can be offensive even when delivered for a fun event.
Stereotypes of gender, race, and religion are poor taste. The exception here, of course, is age-related stereotyped jokes.
Jokes about personal flaws should be included only with great tact. Be careful of getting too specific when mentioning anything negative about the person.