Sunday, March 3, 2013

Birthday Fun

February is a big birthday month for our family.  We start off with my sister's birthday, which is early enough in the month, that by the time I've flipped the calendar page and see her birthday, it's already too late for me to get a card in the mail.  In my original family, this wasn't a huge deal, but to Jerry, it is a bit more important.  I attribute this to the fact that his family owned and operated several Hallmark stores before we married, and so cards are, well, important.  I've tried to tackle this problem before, even making it a New Year's resolution one year, to send birthday cards on time, but alas, it isn't something that I've managed to conquer.  

My brother-in-law's birthday is next - (I got the gift/present there within the week), and then comes Maggie's.  This year she officially became a teenager, although she's been showing symptoms for some time now.  I told her that in my original family, 12 was the limit for parties, and after that it was a special dinner and dessert, but she managed to talk me into a sleepover for just a couple of girls, and then she proceeded to make it into a party using tips and tricks from her American Girl magazines.  Tricky, that girl!  

For the first party activity, each girl got a bag with assorted craft materials, they had 10 minutes to put together a hat, and then model it for Jerry and I.  Here they are at work: 

And here are the finished creations:

Maggie had requested a cheesecake for her birthday cake.  I've never made one, and I don't own a springform pan, so the morning before the party I started calling friends and asking if they had a springform pan for making cheesecake.  The answers all fell under the category of , "No, I just buy cheesecake.  You know they sell those frozen, don't you?"  Ah, yes, I did indeed know that, but Maggie was very specific in her request - she wanted a cheesecake like the one Nana made at Christmas.  I ended up buying a pan when I went to purchase the ingredients for the cake.  If anyone needs to borrow a 9-inch springform pan, just let me know!  Here's her cake: 

And it even tasted good!

Here's our teenager, on her actual birthday.  She's only five inches shorter than me now:

For Maggie's actual birthday, we got snow.  Here's Jerry, heading off to work in it.

Unfortunately, we did not get a snow day.  The school district saved that for the next day, when there was no actual snow, but lots and lots of sleet and ice.  So, the girls had a snow day, but no actual snow to play in.    Oh well - you win some, you lose some.  At least we had one snow day this year - last year (after they added nine snow days to the calendar) we had none.

Before I became a mom, I always thought I would do something fun for my kid's half birthdays,  like make a half-cake, and give them a single silly present, or something.  When Maggie was born, and I realized that her half-birthday was my birthday and vice-versa, those plans died, because celebrating actual birthdays takes precedence over celebrating half birthdays.  This year, the girls used the opportunity to sleep in on the snow day to give me a surprise for my half birthday - breakfast in bed:

Cinnamon toast!  The back of the card said, "From: Maggie & Gracie.  Happy Late Half-B-day."  What sweet girls I have!

Since then, we have had one more birthday this month - my niece, Carissa, turned five.  Believe it or not, Maggie and I sang her Happy Birthday the day BEFORE her birthday.  Of course, I sent the present late, but the song (and the thought!) was early!  Does that count?  No?  Oh well, I'll try again next year!

Happy Birthday, everyone!

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