Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Dead Aunt Karen or Happy Birthday to me

Today (September 3) is my birthday. It’s not a BIG ONE, though it’s big enough to suit me. We’re not doing anything very exciting—Wednesday birthdays don’t lend themselves to much in the way of going out or partying. Though I already got one present today-- Furry Happy Monsters. Guaranteed to wake you up happy!

But several years ago, when I experienced a BIG ONE, my sweet husband, Chris, threw me a surprise party that achieved its goal. I almost had a heart attack when I walked in the house (my sister, who was in on the whoop-de-do, had taken me out to lunch) to find 40 people dressed in their tropical finest, pina coladas in the blender, exotic eats and a mountain of gifts. It was great fun.

My sister, Susan, who got all the baking genes in the family, made me a cake. She got a “Barbie” from the dollar store, laid her out on the cake and wrapped her in a shroud. Susan said that she’d made the cake the day before and put it in the fridge. She then had to chase my then-three-year-old nephew out of the refrigerator until the party. He kept going in to gaze at the cake, lovingly I'm sure. The first time she asked what he was doing he said, “I’m staring at Dead Aunt Karen.” I was touched.

Following the party he carried Dead Aunt Karen around for weeks, until finally she really died. All of her limbs and even her head fell off, and she wasn’t as much fun anymore.

This year, Jake, the now-nine-year-old nephew, (no, that’s still not enough info for you to figure out how old I am) gets the real thing for my birthday, not the imitation Dead Aunt Karen. Chris and I are taking him to visit my parents this weekend. And while it’s my birthday, Jake has already put in his order for food and activities.

“Those 3-inch round steaks with the bacon around them (Mom made the mistake of fixing our little carnivore filet mignon one time. He’s never forgotten it, though he has trouble remembering the name.); chocolate meringue pie; and barbeque (which for those of you not from the South, means pork).”

After eating, he wants to “go to Moontown and fly in Papa’s plane. And don’t you have a museum here? (They live in Huntsville, Ala.) Let’s go there. And those caves we went to once. I want to go there again. And to the library, not that little one near your house, the big one. And can I get a movie and watch it while I eat my pie? I’ll sit on the floor on a towel so I don’t spill it on the rug. …”

While getting older doesn’t thrill me, I have to say, I’m glad I’m not Dead Aunt Karen. I’d hate to miss the fine food and activities that Mom and Jake have planned for my birthday weekend.

For a birthday party today, visit Rebecca's blog. It’s her birthday too, and she’s celebrating by breaking things. And leave a comment telling me about your favorite birthday memories. That’s all the present I need!


LW said...

A very Happy Happy Birthday to you...

cute post..


Morgan Mandel said...

Happy Birthday!
Somehow I'm not as excited about mine as I used to be, but it's a good excuse to eat what I shouldn't. (g)

Morgan Mandel

Emma Larkins said...

Happy Birthday!

Hmm... Let's see... a good birthday memory. I've got it!

A little more than three years ago, a couple of days before my birthday, I was at the Greek restaurant belonging to the dad of my friend. After our meal, my friend came out with a piece of baklava with a lit candle in it. It was so sweet! I spent my actual birthday at my godparents' house, and he sent me a text message wishing me happy birthday. I think that's when I started to think something was going on... we've been together for almost three years now :D

Helen Ginger said...

Loved the story of Dead Aunt Karen.

A birthday story, but not my birthday:
On my oldest sister's big number Bday, my two other sisters and I kidnapped her. We showed up on her doorstep, sprayed with silly string and made her pack a bag and took her. She couldn't figure out where we were going, even though we played and sang along to "Viva Las Vegas" the whole way to the airport.

Anonymous said...

Fun post and thanks for sharing. I stopped celebrating my birthdays after I reached the age that rhymes with "nifty." lol

Marvin D Wilson
blogs at:
eye twitter 2 -

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Karen, you are hilarious! And happy b-day to you! I'm happy you're alive!

Favorite birthday memory--hmm. I don't know about favorite, but I do remember some weird ones. Like the time my family got attacked by bees on a birthday hike. And back when I was starting sixth grade and was in the middle of a crying fit with my parents (I was supposed to start playing violin in the school orchestra, and my parents rented a viola instead--oh the trauma of it!) and we walked in my house with me red faced and sobbing to a surprise party of all my friends!
It occurs to me that I sound rather pitiful.
I'm not really. It was just those two birthdays. The rest were WONDERFUL!

Including today!
Thanks for the comment at my blog party. Reading your name made me smile. My favorite book as a little bitty girl was one about a girl named Karen Kay!


Karen K. Kennedy said...

Thanks for all the great stories, comments and memories!

Helen, love the Viva Las Vegas birthday surprise--I have an Elvis bathroom and thrill to all things of "THE KING."

Morgan, I'm not as excited about mine either, except in the "it's better than the alternative" way!

Emma, what a great story! My husband and I didn't get together over food, but he did propose over a sausage biscuit at Hardee's--and he's still Mr. Romance!

Rebecca, we'll have to share more birthdays! But leave off the bees and the violas--ah, the tragedy, the drama!

Marvin, don't stop celebrating birthdays--you might stop having them!

Thanks for making my day so great!

Janet Reid said...

I'm glad you're not dead too!