I have rolls of Christmas wrapping paper sitting in my closet. Wrapping paper, like the phone book has become obsolete. Wrapping paper is not needed for a gift card; and since I bought everybody on my list a gift card, the paper remains untouched and neglected. The ease and convenience of a gift card is appreciated by a person who doesn’t know how to wrap. Also, a person getting a gift card that they requested doesn’t have to prepare their facial reaction for a gift they may hate.

This year while shopping I’ve also done birthday shopping for family members with birthdays close to Christmas; not close enough to be overshadowed by Christmas, but close enough.

When I was little I was happy my birthday was in the summer so I didn’t have to go to school. I always felt bad for the kids who got homework on their birthday. Bummer.

Even though my two oldest kids have birthdays one week apart I throw two separate parties for them. I didn’t want one of them to grow up with issues. One week we’d have a party with family, friends and cake and a week later we’d repeat the process. It was a lot of eating cake and loosening of the belt. However, during that week we did keep up the Happy Birthday banner. Sometimes the banner would be forgotten about and hung till Mother’s Day, much like your annoying neighbor’s Christmas lights.

Now that both kids are grown and moved out we celebrate both birthdays once, whenever we can get together. Sometimes, Christmas cookies (now stale) may linger and their gift cards seem like an extension of Christmas , but being together is reason enough to celebrate; that and the fact I don’t have to wrap a gift card.

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