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Birthdays for the half-pint set.

2008-06-30 - 5:41 p.m.

What do you do about birthdays for your very young children (if you have them, of course)? For the birthdays Grommet has had thus far, our feelings were that she wouldn’t remember them anyway, so acknowledging her birthday would be more for the family’s benefit and the photos for posterity. Accordingly, we made a point of having dinner with each set of her grandparents on or near her birthdays. There was cake at both festivities, and presents of course, but they weren’t huge get-togethers or anything. We didn’t invite friends or out-of-town relatives (though we’d been made aware of our niece’s early parties and let my sister in-law know what we were doing for Grommet’s birthday, which, as I said, wasn’t a whole lot).

Now we’ve been invited to a party for the one-year-old daughter of some friends of ours. We received a specially-printed card in the mail. We’re not particularly close to these friends, who moved out of town over a year ago. In fact, they’ve rarely called when they’ve come back to town to visit friends and family, and we usually don’t know they’ve been here until after they’ve gone and their visit is mentioned by mutual, closer friends.

I’m assuming that a present is de rigeur for a child’s birthday party and I’m mostly cool with that since I’d have spent the money on a hostess gift or food contribution for any other type of get-together anyway. But I do have to confess to just a tiny bit of resentment about the whole thing: it’s not the first time with this crew that we’ve been invited to an occasion that requires a gift, even though they pretty much ignore us the rest of the time.

Also, I do kind of wonder, are these people going overboard? Or are we short-changing our kids, who maybe should get more fuss and presents? The party’s the day after Canada Day, so I’ll be reporting back if anything noteworthy transpires.

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