Birthday Fun on South Congress Avenue

One of my favorite things about Austin is that it’s so easy to have an “urban adventure” just about any time, with kids of any age! 


A favorite birthday tradition at our house is that you are in control of the day… where we go, what we do and most importantly, what we EAT! My husband requested a little SoCo fun for his big day… starting, of course, with a little curbside Home Slice!



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He’s not a huge fan of policing our 4 kids at a sit down restaurant, but hanging outside at the Home Slice window (1415 South Congress) suits us just fine! The pizza is delicious and the people watching is always excellent. Don’t forget to ask for a ball of dough for the kids to play with while you wait!


If the line is long, you always talk someone in your group into waiting while the rest of you pop across the street and check out a shop or two… there are so many fun spots right there! Maybe even pick up a gift for the birthday boy or girl.


Lucy in Disguise is tons of fun for the whole family to check out… my little Lucy especially loves it. Of course, the fact that Maya Star is right next door makes my Maya very happy.


Once you’ve had your pizza and done a little birthday shopping, it’s cupcake time… Hey Cupcake! time, that is (1511 S. Congress). Cupcakes just taste so much better when they come from a shiny silver trailer and are consumed in the heart of SoCo! And nothing says “Happy Birthday” quite like a Double Dose.


Before you move on, I think it’s actually required that you try to coax a Smile! out of your family… even if they don’t want to. But really, if you’ve filled them with pizza and cupcakes, how could they NOT smile?!



It seems especially appropriate to wrap up a birthday outing on SoCo with a little walk down to the east end of Elizabeth Street to leave your mark on the Before I Die wall (206 E. Elizabeth Street).

We all loved placing our dreams on the wall right there next to those of our Austin neighbors. One of my little ones wants to get $1,000 dollars before he dies (dream big!) and my big girl wants to swim in the Olympics.

Me, I’ll take as many more days just like this one with my little family as I can get!



Natalie Cottam is a happily busy Mama to 4 awesome kids. Her degree is in Marketing and Public Relations and she enjoyed her time working in marketing and event planning. All those skills are coming in handy in these full-time mom years! If she’s not booster-clubbing, room-parenting or otherwise volunteering she is probably cracking jokes with the kids while driving the Mom taxi. Natalie loves to write, take road trips with the family and is learning to quilt. Her two favorite things are family and good food.

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