Main image for Quick Tip: Don't Forget Birthdays and Anniversaries Time to Read: ~1 min

I'm horrible with dates. We've tried several ways to keep track of the birthdays and anniversaries in our lives, but I recently came upon the best, relatively low-tech (and free) way to help me not forget those special days.

We've long been using either Evernote or a Google Doc to keep track of gift ideas and gift history for birthdays and anniversaries, but how best to be proactively reminded of an upcoming special day, and know the answer to the question, "how many years have they been married?"

Use a Google Sheet to Keep Track of Birthdays and Anniversaries

I created a Google Sheet for the second question, and you can access it and make a copy for yourself. The formulas are all in place, so all you have to do when you add new rows is fill the formulas down. Fill in the name, occasion and the date, and columns D-G will tell you:

  1. When's the next special day?
  2. How many days until that next special day?
  3. How old / how many years as of now?
  4. How old / how many years as of the next special day?

Get Reminders for Birthdays and Anniversaries

With this in place, I looked for a way to be reminded proactively of upcoming events. I found the perfect solution in It's a free service, and does exactly what it advertises: sends you an email reminder 7 days (enough time to order and send a present or card) before your event, then another in 3 days (enough time to call ahead), and another on the day.

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