Happy Birthday to me! As I sit here writing this it is November 27, Thanksgiving Day, and yes, it’s my golden birthday. A holiday birthday. Hooray! Not! Here I am 27 years old, and I’m still bitter about sharing my birthday with the Turkey. Please don’t let this happen to your child. Don’t let them grow up to be bitter, turkey – resenting, happy birthmas – hating brats. Maybe my suffering won’t be in vain if it helps you save your child from the same fate! Okay, so maybe I’m getting a little dramatic here, but for a kid this is how it feels sometimes. Don’t let the “specialness” of the holiday take away from your child’s own special day.
Here are some ideas to make your child feel special on his holiday birthday:
- Make it about them. I made this #1 for a reason. They need to be #1. If their birthday was August 3rd they would be #1, so don’t make them feel any less because they share their birthday with Cupid. Give them a day that’s about them. Celebrate on a different day. If your child’s birthday is on a holiday you should still acknowledge it on the holiday – maybe light candles on a small cake and let them open one small gift. However, it is best to throw any parties on a different day. Usually a week or two before is best, because no kids like to have to wait even longer just because the Pilgrims ate dinner with the Indians on their birthday like 5 million years ago (I know the numbers are a little off, but come on I’m dead on in kid math)! Some families choose to celebrate ½ birthdays instead, so that they have a better budget to focus on their child’s birthday. Or you could take a tip from Alice in Wonderland and have a Very Merry Un-Birthday party – just so long as you make it about your kid.
- Separate presents, separate presents, separate presents. Don’t try fooling your kid with the old “we’ll combine your gifts and get you an extra big Christmas gift.” Ha! Yeah right! Your kid is only going to fall for that one once, and remember fool me once! This rarely (if ever) actually happens, and even if it does – kids don’t like to have to wait. At least give them a somewhat decent gift on their birthday, and then give them a better gift for the holiday.
- Let them help pick the theme. A Valentine themed birthday may seem cute when they’re little, but they are not going to like sharing their day with Cupid for long, and unless your child is currently crazy about Frozen® – they are not going to be crazy about a Winter Wonderland theme for their December birthday. Let them help pick the theme. If they don’t have an idea you like try giving them a few options, but let them have as much say in it as their brother or sister had for their birthday.
- No holiday wrapping paper! Don’t wrap their birthday gift in Christmas paper. I cannot stress enough – your kid wants to feel special on their day. Please wrap their birthday gift separately. If you don’t want to buy more paper, try using the comics section from a newspaper to wrap their gift. Kids love that kind of stuff!
- Keep it fair. Keep in mind what you spent, and how much effort was put into their siblings’ birthdays. Try to keep it fair.
- Communicate with them. You don’t have to spend a ton of money to make your kid feel special. Just communicate with them. Let them know how special they are to you, and how much you love them. That’s the most important part!
That’s it. My rant is over. Hopefully, my suggestions will help some other kids.
Whatever you may be celebrating this month, I wish you- Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Holidays, and of course Happy Birthday!