We’re all familiar with that famous 1960s American pop song. Well, I was more than familiar with it – that song was my anthem. I knew all the words and much to the chagrin of those around me, loved to sing it whenever my birthday rolled around. And not without reason – I was a terror during my birthday parties up until the age of 13, and even then my mother has stories for you.
I formed the idea very early on that my birthday party was for me, and me alone. My poor mother had to rig pass-the-parcel, lest I miss out on the big prize in the middle and throw a tantrum. If things didn’t go my way, I would simply burst into tears. One time I cried because I liked one of my guest’s party dresses more than my own. Obviously my 6-year-old friend should have known to "dress down."
After cleaning the house from top to bottom, Mum would spend all day ensuring the needs of ten messy children were met while simultaneously baking 50 mini quiches. My mum was the ultimate party host, and when it came to her kids (no matter how bratty they were) she pulled out all the stops. I can only look back at what she went through, and apologise … profusely.
Despite all the tears, I really did love birthday parties. Getting dressed up, eating sugar all day, and of course scoffing down as many white bread sandwiches as possible (white bread was a banned substance in my house and came out but once a year). Yes, I was a lucky birthday girl.
In the spirit of parties, be it the slumber, baby shower or birthday variety, we’ve dedicated a whole feature to these great landmarks in our lives. Make it easy for yourself and let someone else play host, or go all out and bake the cupcakes yourself – it’s up to you! And if you’re looking for the perfect gift for those who have everything, check out our gift guide.
But whatever you do, never let your child sing that song on their birthday. It will give them ideas.