This week, I celebrate my 68th birthday. Thats is a lot of cake and ice cream! Recently, we have had several first birthday parties. The consensus of the family members is to place a small cake in front of the birthday child and record him or her attacking the cake. My youngest niece Evie, eagerly ate her cake with gusto. When the remains were cleared, she had cake and frosting in her hair and on her face, shirt and both of her hands.
I started to research birthday celebrations. Historically, the Pharaohs of Egypt, proclaimed a feast on the day of the birth of a new Pharaoh over two thousand years ago.
Early Christians celebrated the Feast Day of the saint that had the name sake rather than their birth day. They were given another name at Baptism and picked another saint’s name at Confirmation, when the young person is accepted as an adult into the community.
Some Christian churches have a new member be born again with a public profession of faith in front of the community.
In Japan the seventh, fifth and third birthday are called Schichi-Go-San it is marked by going to visit the Buddhist Temple and distributing sweets to the children. The former empress Michiko’s birthday on October 20th has art exhibits and public festivities. She will turn 88 this year.
In Argentina, birthday party menus include cake, small sandwiches similar to tea sandwiches and filled pastries from the bakery.
In Brazil, tradition calls for guests to sing birthday songs while clapping. Brigadeiro is a chocolate cake, covered with chocolate frosting , served to celebrate the day
In Mexico, Quinceanera, is a traditional celebration on a girl’s 15th birthday. She is welcomed into womanhood with a party and a table of young men and women. Gifts are given to each guest.
In Nigeria, it is common for a whole cow or goat to be roasted. This is served with Jollof rice, a dish of tomatoes, peppers and onions. Nigerians prefer to give small gifts through out the year rather than on special occasions.
In China, friends and family gather to celebrate with each other to promote good luck in the coming year. The year of the dragon, is considered to be the luckiest of the Chinese new year. The next year of the Dragon is in 2024.
Whether you have a lavish party or an intimate family gathering, birthday celebrations are here to stay.
Birthday an acrostic poem
Balloons hang from the kitchen fixture.
I imagine what are hidden in wrappings.
Red and white streamers hang from the corners.
This is the day I have waited for!
Hurrah, Mom brings in the cake.
Dollops of frosting decorate the doll cake.
A cry of lament escapes my lips.
Yuck! The cake slides to the floor!
Carolfarn@aol.com October 24, 2022