Christmas Babies

Did I ever mention that my first name is Holly and my hubby’s is Chris? Yup. We’re Chris and Holly. Although neither one of us was born in December, or even winter for that matter. Despite this fact, however, God was definitely displaying His infinite sense of humor when he blessed us with our first child. He decided it would be most amusing to have her arrive nine days past her due date of December 16th. So Chris and Holly had their first baby on Christmas.

After she was born, whenever people would learn of her birth date, I’d get unrequested feedback from friends and strangers alike.

“Oh,” pursed lips, sad shake of the head. “A Christmas baby. That’s too bad.”

Oh yeah? Well, not in the eyes of my Christmas baby! She has always loved her birthday. When she was really young, she commented once, “Everybody shares their birthday with somebody, mom. I get to share mine with the coolest guy who ever lived.”

I embrace her attitude!

I’ll admit though, it wasn’t easy at first. We initially had to do some creative finagling to help foster that positive attitude, starting with her first birthday. We discovered from talking with other December-borns, that their biggest complaint as kids concerned feeling gypped on birthdays due to receiving combination gifts. “You don’t get combo gifts if your birthday is in June!” They would say.

This is true.

They shared other issues with us as well. So my hubby and I sat down and created a few tips & traditions to help keep our daughter’s birthday special, while still managing to focus on the true reason for the season as well. Here they are:

Two for two. Two presents or no presents. Now, this may sound rude, but we asked family members to please give two separate gifts or no gifts. This completely eliminated the combo gift problem.

Wrap it right. Wrap birthday gifts in birthday paper! It may seem like a small thing, but it makes a difference.

Party hearty. We always have a birthday gathering with her friends a few weeks before her “real” birthday. When she was younger it was a more elaborate affair. Now as a teen, she’s perfectly happy to just host a sleepover with a few of her closest friends.

Decorations, decorations. We have NINE Rubbermaid containers full of Christmas decorations. We really love Christmas time. (Ya’ think?!) But we still decorate our dining room completely in a birthday theme for our daughter. She even has her own tabletop tree which she fills with birthday decorations and a party hat for the top. We place all her birthday presents under that tree.

Flexible festivities. We ended up reworking Christmas dinner a bit. Since the birthday child customarily chooses what the family has for dinner, our Christmas meals would consist of: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie with whipped cream… pizza, apple slices, raw carrot sticks and birthday cake. Needless to say, not working! Now, we have our Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve before attending the Christmas Eve service at our church. We keep the focus completely on Jesus until late Christmas morning. Then, we transition into birthday party mode for our December girl.

Applying these principals has been a great success with our daughter. We still keep our Jesus focus, yet also manage to generate a sense of birthday excitement as well.

Have a blessed Christmas everyone! And a big ol’ happy birthday to all the rest of you December birthday kids out there.

Image by: Conorwithonen


Anonymous said...

Great tips! We met a couple with a Christmas baby last night at wedding - they talked about how they celebrated her 1/2 birthday in June, as well as on Christmas day. Which didn't seem quite fair to their other kids - unless they also celebrated 1/2 birthdays!

Name: Holly Bowne said...

Thanks, Melanie! We asked our daughter, several years ago, if she'd like to celebrate a half birthday in June instead of celebrating in December. Her answer was an unequivocal no! So December 25th it remains. ;)

Annette Piper said...

You're doing a great job there with a Christmas birthday. Our twins were born on New Years Day so whilst not quite the same its not great either. Everyone is on holidays (its our summer holidays then down here in Australia) and the grown ups are usually recovering from New Years Eve celebrations.

We make sure that all the Xmas decorations are pulled down a couple of days prior to their birthday and sometimes have a party with their school friends before school finishes for the holidays.

And we tell them how special it is to have been born on the first day of the year!