The worst/best time to have a birthday

birthday cake
Yesterday was such a perfect day. First thing in the morning, my friend Nath delivered a birthday cake that was just like my Grandma King used to make for me when my family happened to be travelling on my birthday (and which I remember eating for breakfast before getting in the car for a long ride home): angel food with strawberry frosting.

The kids and Kevin gave me the whole day off. I went shopping, an annual event, and refreshed my wardrobe for the coming year. (And, no, I’m not exaggerating; it really is an annual event. Lucky me, my birthday falls during prime sales time). Add to the list of happy happenings: yoga, naptime, dinner out, and late-night vegging on the couch watching episodes of Modern Family (why so funny? can’t analyze it), and it was such a fine day.

When I came home from shopping, I found these messages on our chalkboard.
chalkboard messages
“Happy birthday Mom! why we love you.”
chalkboard messages
“I love everything about you mom, the way you look smell and act.” “I love how you’r a good role model to look up too. When I grow up I want to be just like you.”
chalkboard messages
“She plays piano.” “You are generous.” “I love how she does everything.” “She makes the best cookies.” “She makes the best food.” [this message brought to you by the fussiest of all my eaters!] “She gets lego for me.” “She cooks for us.” “You read bedtime stories.” “Because you are organized and kinda bossy.” [“Who wrote that one?” “Daddy!”]

When I was a kid, I was pretty sure my birthday fell at the wrong time of the year. Now I’m pretty sure it’s exactly right. Just when I’m collapsing into the post-Christmas/pre-New-Year’s slump, along comes my birthday to fill me right back up again.
Which is good, because today we return to our regularly scheduled programming.

Birthday girl
Day of doing nothing, whatever that means


  1. katie

    The gift of the chalkboard comments is a tear-jerker! Somehow, it fills me up to know you are so loved : )

  2. Margo

    happy birthday, Carrie! I’m glad to have “met” you online. I’m curious about the yearly wardrobe refresh – not sure I could think far enough ahead! I’m hinting for some pictures or an explanation. I’m always interested in the ways people manage.

  3. Carrie Snyder

    Katie, I was in tears. It was just so lovely. The best gift ever. I am a content woman.

  4. Carrie Snyder

    Margo, that would make a good blog post. I do exaggerate ever so slightly. I occasionally buy something in the summer too, depending on how sad my summer wardrobe is looking when I pull it out of the attic, or if I have a big event to attend (ie. a sibling’s wedding). But for the past three years, I’ve bought two pairs of new jeans, a sweater or two, and a basic shirt or three on my birthday–they last all year, or longer, with the previous years’ supplies thrown into the mix too. For example, I’ve been wearing a particular pair of identical sweaters, in different colours, for going on three years (my husband was glad when I came home with two new ones this round). My wardrobe is very basic, but I choose clothes that just seem to be “me.” I can’t wait to wear the jacket I chose yesterday for my readings and books launches this year! Maybe I’ll write a post on the subject of clothes/shopping next week!

  5. melanie

    I know just how you feel. My birthday is the 1st and so it was a bittersweet birthday growing up (few presents, wondering why my much older siblings were always so miserable that day – obviously from being out so late the night before). But now that I am older I’ve made it a special day again and I quite enjoy it.

    Love the chalk board. I can only hope my girls will be inspired to do something like that for me when they are older.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *