35+ Ways to Say 'Happy Birthday' to Your Sister in Heaven


Celebrating birthdays with a sister may be among the most unforgettable experiences you can have. Growing up, it was common to have families celebrate childhood birthdays together, which can provide a wealth of great memories. 

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If your sister recently passed away, though, you may feel lost. What can you do to fill the day? After so many years of celebrating your sister’s life, it feels wrong to ignore the occasion.

While you may be grieving over your sister on her special day, it doesn’t mean you can’t set aside some time to celebrate what she meant to you. Your memories of her are worth commemorating. Below, we’ve outlined ideas for you to send a happy birthday wish straight to heaven.

Read a Poem that Reminds You of Her

Poems can express the full range of human emotions, even if you feel locked in with your grief.  Here are some great choices to celebrate your sister: 

"We Are All the Same” by Rumi

This author of this poem craves people who understand them. Who better to do that than a sister?

“We are all the same / Listen to the reeds / as they sway apart / Hear them speak / of lost friends / At birth you were cut / from your bed / Crying and grasping / in separation / Everyone listens, / knowing your song / You yearn for others, / who know your name …” 

"Irreplaceable" by rupi kaur

Everyone is so unique, even if they’re close as sisters. 

“the universe took its time on you / crafted you to offer the world / something different from everyone else / when you doubt how you were created / you doubt an energy greater than us both.”

"A Birthday" by Christina Rossetti

The lovely similes in this poem celebrate what it’s like to love someone on their birthday. 

“My heart is like a singing bird / Whose nest is in a water’d shoot; / My heart is like an apple-tree / Whose boughs are bent with thickset fruit; / My heart is like a rainbow shell / That paddles in a halcyon sea; / My heart is gladder than all these / Because my love is come to me.”

"At Twenty-Eight" by Amy Fleury

This poem celebrates the contradictions embodied by sisters. 

“It seems I get by on more luck than sense, / not the kind brought on by knuckle to wood, / breath on dice, or pennies found in the mud. / I shimmy and slip by on pure fool chance. / At turns charmed and cursed, a girl knows romance / as coffee, red wine, and books …”

"A Birthday Poem" by Ted Kooser

This lovely poem urges everyone to “feast on every green moment” and celebrate life while it lasts. 

“With its heavy red head / in a black stanchion of trees, / waiting for someone to come / with his bucket / for the foamy white light, / and then a long day in the pasture. / I too spend my days grazing, / feasting on every green moment …”

"A Birthday Poem" by John Tiong Chunghoo

‘Odd’ birthdays are sometimes difficult to cope with. As a lonely traveler, Chunghoo encapsulates this feeling. 

“lone traveler/ from kuala lumpur to tokyo to china / cold places, strange people warm and cold / so many unknowns that became knowns / that resulted in an occasional shopping tete-a-tete /

and at those fortunate birthday celebrations / thrown by foreign friends / …”

“A Birthday Night Out" by Alison Cassidy

Special birthday celebrations might be some of the most memorable nights in your life. 

“Tall and slender, / she graced the noisy restaurant / draped in Madonna blue. / Her laughter sparkled. / Her pale skin revealed / a filigree of venous lace. / Her eyes bubbled, as she

poured the Veuve Clicquot, / and read aloud the words of wit / penned by her wild and woolly brothers …”

"A Birthday Gift" by Robert Fuller Murray

What greater gift is there than love?

“No gift I bring but worship, and the love / Which all must bear to lovely souls and pure, / Those lights, that, when all else is dark, endure; / Stars in the night, to lift our eyes above; / To lift our eyes and hearts, and make us move / Less doubtful, though our journey be obscure ....”

“Happy Birthday” by Sylvia Gordon 

This simple poem asks for love, peace, and blessings on their loved one’s birthday. 

“Happy Birthday from us to you / May this one be the best one yet. / Love and peace to you,

A nice cash flow too. / Kisses, hugs on top of that. Happy Birthday to you, / And may God bless you, / With good health, / A family giving you their best / And another birthday on top of that.”

"For My Sister on Her Sixteenth Birthday" by Charlie F. Kane

This sweet poem between siblings immortalizes and celebrates Kane’s sister. 

“… there are no words of wisdom that I can give you / That you probably don’t already know, / The only advice I could impart is just to stay crazy … / My sister- the strong, independent girl who takes no rubbish off anyone, / Listens to Elaine Page and the Sex Pistols, quotes Monty Python as if it were verse / And uses her eyebrows as dangerous weapons.”

Check out our selection of funeral poems if you'd like more inspiration.

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Start a Ritual or Tradition to Celebrate your Sister’s Birthday

Traditions bring people together, as they can offer common bonding opportunities and also fill the day with something meaningful. 

Make a birthday cake

Birthday cakes are one of the most iconic American traditions. Whether your sister preferred carrot, chocolate, or vanilla cake, make one! Share it with friends and family as a tasty memorial.

Go to her favorite spot 

What spots did your sister love? Maybe there was a particular hill she loved watching the sunrise from. Maybe she went to a certain coffee shop every weekend. No matter what she loved, try visiting that spot to commemorate her. 

Throw a party

Parties are a great opportunity to celebrate and focus on the positives. You might prefer a quiet gathering of family members or an exuberant celebration. You can decorate for a birthday, make a cake, and go all out. 

Volunteer in her memory 

One of the most important pieces of someone’s legacy is how they cared for others. What charities did your sister love? Some people volunteer at animal shelters or soup kitchens. Others take advantage of more unusual opportunities to give back. Spending her birthday volunteering is a great way to carry on her legacy. 

Take a trip 

A trip could be visiting her grave if you live far away. It could also be taking a day trip to one of her favorite places. Journeying away from your home and neighborhood can help you get out of your head. 

Host a family reunion 

What better way to deal with a difficult day than with your family all around you? Hosting a family reunion gives everyone an excuse to remember your sister. You may end up visiting relatives you haven’t seen since the funeral. 

Create a memorial 

Creating a permanent memorial is a great idea. You can do it by planting something. Trees, flowers, or bushes are all lovely options. You can plant it at your home, at the cemetery, or any other meaningful place. 

Get a tattoo 

Many people get tattoos for loved ones who have already passed away. If you have a tattoo in mind that would memorialize your sister, consider getting it done on her birthday.

Write a poem for her

Many poets have expressed their feelings about every facet of the human experience. Just because it’s already been done, that doesn’t mean you don’t bring something new to the table. Writing, in general, can be very cathartic and poetry is a unique vessel to help share your grief. 

Host an event 

If you don’t have a family to invite for a reunion or enough friends for a party, host an event! It can be anything. Did your sister love to read? Host a book club event! Did she love baking? Gather together people from your neighborhood and try some new recipes. 

Make a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram Post to Say ‘Happy Birthday in Heaven, Sister’

Social media posts are popular places to post ‘happy birthday’ wishes. With these templates, you can do the same thing. 

  • Happy birthday to the sweetest sister in the world! I’m glad I have so many adventurous memories with her. 
  • Remembering all the great times I had on my sister’s birthday. Here’s to another year, sister!
  • Happy birthday to my best friend, my partner in crime, my sister. Thanks for the memories!
  • Thanks for all the great birthday memories, sister. I miss you!
  • Happy birthday to my favorite person in the world. I’m so lucky to have had you as my sister! 
  • I was so lucky to have a sister and a best friend all in one. Happy birthday!

After you post, people may offer messages of sympathy. Check out our guide on how to respond to condolences if you're having trouble finding the words to say.

Read a Quote to Help You Remember Your Sister

These quotes emphasize what sisterhood means to you. 

  • “For there is no friend like a sister, In calm or stormy weather; To cheer one on the tedious way, To fetch one if one goes astray, To lift one if one totters down, To strengthen whilst one stands.” -Christina Rosetti, Author
  • "You cannot see sisterhood, neither can you hear it nor taste it. But you can feel it a hundred times a day. It is a pat on the back, a smile of encouragement. It's someone to share with, to celebrate your achievements." -Author Unknown
  • “Two scorpions living in the same hole will get along better than two sisters in the same house.” -Arabian Proverb
  • “A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life.” -Isadora James, Author
  • “When sisters stand shoulder to shoulder, who stands a chance against us?” -Pam Brown, Journalist
  • “Sisters are the people we practice on, the people who teach us about fairness and cooperation and kindness and caring – quite often the hard way.” -Pamela Dugdale, Author
  • “You may be as different as the sun and the moon, but the same blood flows through both your hearts. You need her, as she needs you.” -George R.R. Martin, Author
  • “Is solace anywhere more comforting than that in the arms of a sister?” -Alice Walker, Author
  • “You know full well as I do the value of sisters’ affections; there is nothing like it in this world.” -Charlotte Bronte, Author
  • “Both within the family and without, our sisters hold up our mirrors: our images of who we are and of who we can dare to become. Elizabeth Fishel - Author, Occupation

Celebrating Your Sister 

During a painful anniversary, it’s easy to focus on loss. Remembering what a vibrant, joyous life your sister had is also important. Celebrate her by focusing on her positive traits, great memories, and the love you shared.


  1. Komaroff, Anthony. “Coping with grief and loss during the holidays.” Harvard Health Publishing, 24 December 2011, www.health.harvard.edu/blog/coping-with-grief-and-loss-during-the-holidays-201112244028

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