What About December Babies? Keeping Happy Birthday and Merry Christmas Separate
The holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, but is that true when you have a December birthday?
Having a birthday tied to a major holiday can be a mixed blessing. For some the extra festivities are exciting, but to others it doesn’t feel like “your” day. Everyone deserves to celebrate their birthday and find ways to make it special regardless of the date it falls on.
Initially, my son’s December due date didn’t phase me. I assumed he would arrive a little early like his sister, which would put his birthday at the end of November. My daughter loves her Halloween birthday, and I figured a Thanksgiving birthday wouldn’t be too bad either. I thought my biggest birthday dilemma would revolve around whether or not to combine the kids’ birthday parties each year.
Instead, my son arrived at the beginning of December. Smack dab in the middle of the holiday season.
When I was little, I used to think it would be awesome to have a Christmas birthday. Everything is so festive and all the presents. Oh my goodness, wouldn’t that mean twice as many presents? But, even with my birthday in mid-January sometimes I received combined Christmas/birthday gifts (usually larger items). So I started thinking about how to keep my son from ever feeling like his special day got swallowed up by the holidays.
Wondering what other December babies thought about having birthdays so close to Christmas and wanting tips for keeping them separate, I asked a few other moms about their experiences.
More presents? Not according to Holly Ford, mother of two in Salt Lake City, Utah, “My birthday is in December. We always celebrated my birthday, but I always felt like I got less overall presents than my other six siblings did on their birthdays.”
“Hated it. Everyone always forgot. I would get Christmas cards/birthday cards. I even had a snowman birthday cake once… My son is now right after Christmas and I will do my best to make it special for him. Ornaments are not birthday presents!” shared Jillian Nelson-Lathen, mother of one living in Germany. “I don’t blame my parents though. We didn’t have a lot of money growing up.”
“My birthday is the 6th. I always had a separate party and gifts. My mom always did Christmas tree decorating as part of my party. It was a neat tradition, and my mom still says she could tell how much we all grew by how far up the tree the ornaments went. I never felt like I got the shaft, but I think my parents worked hard to make sure I didn’t,” shared Heather Tankersley Rodriguez, mother of two in El Paso, Texas.
Sarah Cannizzaro VanHest, mother of four in Cookstown, New Jersey, offered a few ideas on how to celebrate them separately on the same day. ”My youngest daughter was born on Christmas Day and for now she loves it (she will be 9)… I try to make Christmas special for my birthday girl and try to separate the day. In the morning, we open gifts from Santa, then family comes a little later. After we have dinner I kick everyone out of the kitchen and take down all Christmas decorations in there and put up birthday decorations. I also make sure her cake is anything but Christmas themed, and I hate when she gets birthday gifts wrapped in Christmas paper!”
The biggest tip is to find ways to make it special that are independent of the holiday. I know I can’t control it if others try to combine his presents, and I don’t want to be rude if they do, but I will set the example myself.
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