Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy Birthday to Everyone Celebrating a Christmas Birthday

I'm breaking my tradition this year. I figure there are enough holiday greetings to go around, so this message is for everyone with a Christmas birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I kinda know what it's like to have a Christmas birthday because one of my daughters was born on December 24th, and although every year we tried hard to separate her birthday from Christmas, I never got the feeling that we quite pulled it off.

Amidst all the shopping, baking, decorating, sending and receiving Christmas cards, and everywhere we go, carols are playing and lights are twinkling, it's no wonder most Christmas "babies" feel like their birthday takes second stage.

Interesting though, I recently heard about a woman who was determined to make it up to the children who had summer birthdays, feeling that they missed out by not being in school to pass out cupcakes and have all their friends wish them a happy birthday. So, she had special school days where all the summer kids could celebrate their birthdays. It makes me wonder how many people really like their birth-day.

I like the way a friend is celebrating her birthday this year, which is to throw herself a birthday party on her birthday, December 25th. She phoned all her friends back in June with the initial invitation and this month mailed out printed invitations to an open house from 3:00-6:00. She went to the party store and bought herself the traditional kid's cone paper birthday hat and a huge badge that says "Birthday Girl" and for decorations, a "Happy Birthday" banner will hang inside the door of her apartment. Refreshments will be the traditional birthday cake and drinks.

I'm all for the idea of adults taking charge and planning the kind of celebration that makes them happy. I've planned many of my own birthdays through the years, and family and friends are always willing to accommodate. I remember one year when I waited for my family to ask the usual question, "What would you like to do for your birthday?" I was ready. "Take a hike" I replied. This was when I was doing research for day trips for Cruising Connecticut and the trail I had read about was not well-traveled so I needed some company. Although they weren't enthusiastic about the idea, they helped me pack up the birthday cake, candles, drinks and paper goods and off we went.

The destination didn't turn out to be suitable for my book, but nonetheless, it was a nice hike and we found a clearing to have my birthday cake, complete with candles, singing and all. The only onlookers were a man and a dog. This was a rather low-key birthday, but I've planned some doozies, like renting out the Bushnell Park Carousel for a joint party with a dear friend who shares a birthday on the same day. And, wait until my family hear the plans for the next one!

A very Happy Birthday to my Christmas Eve daughter, my fun loving birthday-planning friend, my young cousin in Hyannis, other friends and acquaintances, and everyone who has a birthday on or near Christmas. Whenever or however you choose to celebrate, have fun and enjoy your special day!


Patti Brooks Books said...

Have a great Christmas as I love reading your Blog. Dennis talks great things about you and your book. I hope we can link our blogs as I'll put yours under my "Patti's Links & Blogs."
Patti Brooks

Neicy B said...

Dear, dear Jan,

As a woman born on December 25th almost 50 years ago, I really want to thank you for this lovely, heartfelt and heartwarming shout out to year-end holiday babies everywhere! It's a tough, tough day to be born. After all - check out the "competition"! Not just associated with an individual but an entire SEASON, with many holidays being celebrated. These days, the December holiday season starts in July when all the holiday decorations and advertising hit the stores. Each decade the shopping frenzy gets earlier and earlier... Black Friday? Who waits until November to shop? It all starts well before Halloween! In conclusion, I appreciate your thoughts and how your family has worked to highlight the December 24th birthday in your family. I also appreciate your idea that no matter when a person is born, it really is up to us to us - as adults - to create the celebrations we'd like to cherish in our hearts for years to come. Happy New Year to you Miss Jan.

Neicy B

Holly said...

It's my birthday and what a great blog to wake up to! When my husband asked recently if I wanted a big party to celebrate my 50th, I told him "no party!" "What do you want?" he asked. I said "I just want to feel special." I guess these words tumbled out because I have enjoyed 50 birthdays of Jan Mann helping me to feel special on my Christmas birthday. And mom, I have noticed how hard you have to work at it with all the Christmas competition! Thanks Mom! I Love You!

CrusingCT said...

Holly, thank you for the comment, for giving ME a gift on YOUR birthday. Everyone in your life feels you are special 365 days of the year. Love, Mom