It Was the Best of Birthdays, It Was the Worst...
O.K., perhaps that title is an exaggeration. I know that my 21st birthday was probably the worst as I had two finals and a paper due that day. You know that I celebrated in a huge way after my finals. You know since it was my first time drinking "wink, wink." This year's birthday had high highs and extremely low lows.
I am not one of those people who dwell on birthdays. I did not mind turning 40. In fact, I quite like milestone birthdays. As a kid I was ecstatic to be double digits. I remember being thrilled to find out I was pregnant a month before my 30th birthday. For some reason, I needed to see that red line before my 30th birthday. Of course, I was so early in my pregnancy that I had not told anyone. At my 30th birthday party, my friends were astounded that I did not drink any alcohol. Not that I was a lush or anything...
This year's birthday could have passed without any of my family noticing. Oh, I am sure someone would have remembered, but I wasn't taking any chances. I became mildly obsessed with reminding the kids to "make me a card, nothing fancy...just a hand drawn/written card!" Desperate, much? It was a pseudo milestone birthday...at least in my eyes. On surveys, I am now in a different age bracket. Gulp.
My [blank]th birthday fell on a Wednesday. So no sleeping in for me. I was up with the lark at 6:30...not bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, but vertical at least. My version of sleeping in was taking a catnap before dealing with morning routine #2. It was an enjoyable if brief nap until my youngest tapped my shoulder and asked for breakfast.
Once kids were at school, my day was business as usual...doctor's appointment, returning a pair of too small sandals, taking the car to the dealership for a recall, picking up a prescription, and back to do some work before the kids came home from school. It was...you know just another ho hum "working and cramming in errands during the school day" day.
School activities never stop...not even for a birthday. So, my middle daughter had to be driven to her Wednesday night swim team practice. I worked out. I know! I'm still trying to figure that one out, too. I guess I was starting my new year off with a bang not a whimper. Oh, I did whimper a bit as I have not exercised in months.
The fact that my birthday fell on a school day was bad enough, but it was also report card day. Really, school system? Did you have to send home report cards on my birthday? I mean how about waiting until the day after. All three report cards were quite good, except for one grade for each kid. Why oh why, did I have to have a serious discussion with each kid about a particular grade on my birthday. By 3:30 p.m. I was ready to go to bed. Forget about dinner and cake and presents!
One bright spot... I did not leave the gift giving to chance. If any items were going to be returned, it would be items I purchased in the first place...not gifts that while well-intentioned don't fit, are the wrong color, etc. I shopped for myself at Costco during a rare during the day date with my husband. IHOP and Costco, could anything be more romantic? Such is the stuff of married with children life, but oh the stack of pancakes are soooo good. In true buying in bulk fashion, our Costco cart held a gallon of milk, The Help by Katherine Stockett, a pack of toothpaste, 3 pairs of Liz Claiborne capris (I am sure 2 pairs will go back), Listerine, Head & Shoulders shampoo, a blouse I can tolerate, and a blouse I love. Digging through the huge stacks of clothes at Costco requires upper body strength. Sadly, my size is at the bottom of the stack. I might need to increase my workout time.
Dinner was supposed to be a relaxing, quick meal at California Tortilla. What is it that they say about the best laid plans? Of course, California Tortilla was bursting at the seams with kids and parents from a local elementary school fundraiser. Oh, and did I mention that it was Cinco de Mayo, too?
Once home, my tween revealed that she still had math homework to do. I scratched my head and said "Didn't I ask you 3 hours ago if you had homework? And didn't you say you were done?!" Nothing to be done, except let her do her homework. I withdrew to the family room to watch a mindless game show. I gave the evil eye to the child who tried to join me.
The kids were responsible for making me cards -- and listening to my nagging. At 8 p.m., I had yet to see a child industriously working on a birthday card. I dropped heavy hints to my husband and to the kids. Could I micromanage my birthday any more?? My husband assured me he had it under control.
By 9:15 we were all finally ready to sing Happy Birthday and have cake. I wiped away a tear as I thought about the years when all the kids had a 7:30 p.m. bedtime. I rallied myself. No matter what goes on during the day, I can always get excited about a chocolate birthday cake.
When not fretting over what her kids are doing, Jill blogs at Musings from Me about what her kids just did.