Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories, Day 15 - Holiday Happenings

I am one of those Holiday Happenings.  My birthday is January 4th ...exactly 10 days after Christmas.  Christmas and New Year celebrations have come and gone and everyone's ready to get back to routine.  The stores are gutted and so are the pocketbooks.  More often than not, my birthday is an afterthought - even for me!

My Mom was a bookkeeper and for part of the time when I was growing up, she was divorced and raising me by herself and then after she married again, she and my new Dad started their own business. There were some lean years.  Bookkeepers have a great deal of work at the end of the year and there was simply no way for her to take time off to prepare a birthday party for me.  In the 1940 and 50's birthdays weren't such a big deal for most people, anyway. One year she did try to arrange a party for me, but the party was snowed out.

When I was about 6th or 7th grade, I asked if I could just have a Halloween party instead - no presents, just a party.  So, I absolutely did have that party and it was a huge success. 

But probably my very best birthday party was in mid-life - about 20 years ago.  And it did happen on a Holiday.

My middle child sometimes has a problem with events that occur on the same day every year ...they sneak up on him.  He was out of college and working and one year he forgot my birthday, and then his Dad's, which followed in early February.  Now understand that wasn't a big deal since neither of us had grown up with big birthday bashes.  In fact, we thought it funny since our birthdays had always been in January and February, and would always be in January and February.

The following summer, we went to Texas to visit him and the visit coincided with the 4th of July.  Now the 4th of July is exactly six months after my birthday.  Well, he threw us a "Half-Year Birthday Party".  Presents and a picnic in the park, then tickets to the baseball game followed by magnificent fireworks.  Now that party was a BLAST!

Many times during the years, my parents and sisters gave me combination gifts for Christams that were for both occasions.  Saved time and wrapping.

These days my children are extremely careful to see that I get separate gifts for both Christmas and my much-too-soon-after birthday.  So very much appreciated!  Just the same, I've always envied those who have summer birthdays and get to space out their surprises!