Holiday Birthdays

Merry New Year! I mean, Merry Birthday! (And, if haven’t watched Trading Places, do so… now.)

The holidays can get confusing if your birthday (or the birthday of someone you love)  falls in the middle of them.

I consider myself somewhat of an expert on this, since I’ve had a Christmas Eve birthday for, oh, 30 odd years or so.

People with a holiday birthdays grow up with a love-hate relationship with the  season. On the one hand, everyone decorates for you, right? On the other, you can’t help but feel a bit obsolete amid the monstrosity that is Christmas.

Regardless, on behalf of Sagittarius-Capricorns everywhere (Sagittorns? Capricarius?), I kindly ask that you be sensitive to our plight. It may be a bit childish, but when it comes to birthdays, there’s still a bit of a kid in us all.

How could a 1 year old not be confused by this menagerie?
How could a 1 year old not be confused by this menagerie?

Here are five easy ways to distinguish the “happy” part of the day from the “merry”:

1. Separate gifts. Period.

So many people think it’s okay to group holiday and birthday gifts into one big present. I’m here to assure you—barring rare circumstances explicitly approved by the recipient—it is NOT okay.

2. Separate wrapping paper, too, please.

Do I really need to point this out? My parents were (thankfully) sticklers about this, but many people aren’t. Would you wrap an April birthday present in Christmas paper? Or even Easter paper, for that matter? Of course not.

3. Set aside holiday-free time.

Part of the day should only be birthday-only, no holiday allowed. Carve out time for a special brunch, lunch, or dinner. And by all means, do not wear that Christmas sweater.

holiday birthday cake4. Leave room for cake.

With all the other sweets around, you may think it’s not necessary, but it kind of is. I don’t even like cake (ooh, I can feel my friend Geraldine’s disapproval bearing down on my soul), but birthdays aren’t birthdays without cake. Just make sure it’s poinsettia- and elf-free. (That holds true for both the ingredients and the decorations.)

5. Send a birthday card.

Heck, you can even put it in the envelope with your holiday card and save yourself a stamp! Sure, we all get and send more mail at this time of year, but birthday cards during this season are rare gems. Trust me. You’ll be a hero.

Do you have a holiday birthday? What do you like (or despise)?

3 thoughts on “Holiday Birthdays

  1. Yes. Yes! A thousand times, yes!

    I did have the advantage of growing up in a big family so my parents couldn’t get away with the “combination gift” routine. Would you do that for someone whose birthday is in June? I do like that my birthday is in between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. There’s still a lot of residual good cheer.

    My older brother’s birthday is on New Year’s Eve and when he goes to a NYE party he just pretends it’s for him.

    1. Of course the party is for your brother’s birthday–just like all the lights are for us, right? I will say this about a holiday birthday: I’m always surrounded by people I love that day. For that fact alone, I’d endure more than my fair share of gifts in Santa paper.

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