Monday, February 25, 2013

Half Birthdays

"Why do you celebrate half birthdays?" 

This is what my Grandma asked when  Joy told her how we were going to have lasagna and cookies for her half birthday party.  I rambled about how we had some party a few years ago that happened to coincide with a half birthday, so we just called it a half birthday party, and suddenly we had a tradition.

I honestly don't remember why or when we started celebrating half birthdays.  It just sort of happened.  I'm sure my ramblings were probably close to the truth.

But probably it was my subconscious self giving my children what I'd always wished my parents would have done for me.

My birthday is in December.  Less than two very short weeks before Christmas.  To this day you had better not buy me a "joint Birthday-Christmas present" without my expressly asking for it or I will not be happy.  I don't like getting birthday presents wrapped in Christmas paper (okay, this one I let slide now that I'm a mom because my own presents are often wrapped in whatever paper I have on hand, even if it means giving my kids birthday presents wrapped in wedding paper.  It's paper, right?)

But mostly I hate getting a whole year's worth of presents in the space of two weeks.  And then nothing, nothing, the other fifty weeks of the year.  Boo.

I begged my parents to switch my birthday to June.  I jokingly told Hubby that I was changing my birthday to June even if it meant skipping my birthday one year so I had to wait eighteen months rather than six.

Yup.  I think this is the real reason why I celebrate my kids' half birthdays.  We don't do them up big; no fancy parties.  We just acknowledge it, make a special dinner with a special dessert, and try to do something during the day that's fun and out of the norm.

Browning the meat and wearing her favorite dress

Today Joy celebrated her half birthday.  She really wanted lasagna, something that I have only made three times ever-two of those times while helping my Grandma who really was the one making it.  Basically, lasagna is not something I have a lot of experience with.  But, I love my daughter, so I bought the noodles and ricotta cheese and pulled out Grandma's recipe which I very loosely followed.  (I used no boil noodles, ground turkey when I realized I was out of ground beef, added spinach, used canned pasta sauce, and didn't add eggs to the ricotta due to allergies.  Pretty much nothing like Grandma's lasagna other than it involving noodles, sauce, meat, cheese, and cooking it)

The finished product ready for the oven

I wasn't feeling so hot today (thank you, Hubby, for sharing your cooties), and making cookies was not something I wanted to tackle on top of making lasagna, so I bribed Joy with donuts for her birthday treat and got out of making cookies.

Joy had a great day, loved her special dinner and treat, and was all smiles the entire day.  We sang Happy Half Birthday To You, let her blow out a candle, and the day was a success.

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