If you ask me the ages of my kids in December and January, I'll probably give you a very confused look and have to think hard before I answer. I have four children, and their birthdays all fall within a seven-week period surrounding Christmas.
So far, we've tried to keep birthdays simple. I'm just not a buy-a-fancy-cake, have-a-big-party type of mom. So here's our way of making birthdays special without a lot of fuss.
1) Cake: Each child gets to choose the flavor and shape of his or her cake, as well as the color of frosting and what will be written on the cake. (Example: "I'm 5 and I love trains.") Acceptable shapes are circle or rectangle. My youngest and oldest got creative this year and chose "cookie cake" and cheesecake, respectively.
2) Family Dinner: If we're home the evening of their birthday, the birthday child gets to choose what to have for supper. We also invite their grandparents and godparents; sometimes they can come, sometimes not.
3) Family Outing: To help cure the winter blues, we sometimes take a family outing for some or all of the birthdays. It might be a day trip to a museum, an overnight trip to a waterpark, or a stop in town for a game of bowling.
4) Gifts: Each child gets one gift from us, which usually costs $40 or less. Since they're still recovering from Christmas gifts, we keep the birthday gifts simple. (We also tend to get them a few surprises in the summer as well.)
5) School: Each child chooses a simple treat or trinket to share with all of their classmates on the school day closest to their birthday.
What about you? How do you celebrate your children's birthdays? Are we depriving our kids by not doing something more?