Moms of winter babies, do you do "half" birthday parties in the summer? - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Would you go to a "half" party in the summer for a child born in the winter?
Yes I would. 35 100.00%
No I wouldn't. 82 100.00%
I think it's a neat idea. 25 100.00%
I think it's a bad idea. 30 100.00%
Other (please elaborate) 11 100.00%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 5. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 05:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We live in NW Indiana (think Chicago region) and have two children born in the middle of winter (Dec. & Jan.). Their birthdays fall within three weeks of each other (four years apart).

It seems like each year that we've had a birthday for our oldest (our youngest was born this past January), we get really bad snowy/icy weather which prevents most people from traveling even a small distance to her party. One year we had two people show up because of the weather. And we're always forced to either have it at our house (which gets stressful for many reasons) or pay an outrageous amount of money and travel some distance to have it somewhere like else (Chuck-E-Cheese, skating rink, family fun center, etc.)

I've been thinking about having a half birthday for them sometime in June/July so that the weather should be good and we would have more options of having their party outdoors if we wanted. This party would of course replace the winter party. I figured we, as a family, could celebrate their actual birthdays with a family outing and gifts and then celebrate with everyone else in the summer.

Has anyone done this?

Do you think people would show up since it's not the kids' actual birthdays?

Or do you have any other suggestions for us?

Thanks for your input!
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#2 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 05:31 PM
 
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February here... and similar climate. No we don't do half birthday parties. We only do a birthday "party" every other year, and then it's very toned-down.
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#3 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by velochic View Post
February here... and similar climate. No we don't do half birthday parties. We only do a birthday "party" every other year, and then it's very toned-down. I really feel like (just my opinion) birthdays are a materialistic "gimme"fest typical of American culture and having a half-birthday is too over-the-top. We are more inclined to simply mark the day with doing something particularly special for dd, keeping it simple and letting her know that we appreciate her.
I do agree with you in regards to the materialistic aspect of things.

That's not the reason for the "half" birthday party. It's so the kids can get together with their friends to celebrate their special day- even though it's not their actual birthday. I hope that makes sense!
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#4 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 05:49 PM
 
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We don't have the bad weather factor, but my DS b-day is Dec 20th. Just a bad time to try and get friends and family over to play since it generally falls just about the time people are traveling for the holidays. I would consider having a celebration in the summertime, just so that we could have a nice group. We generally do no gift parties, so that is not part of it anyway.

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#5 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 05:53 PM
 
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DD1 has an early December birthday, and we've never had a 'half birthday' party for her.

Would I attend a half-birthday party if we were invited to one? I can't see any reason why not, but I'd never host one. We celebrate birthdays when they actually occur.

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#6 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 05:59 PM
 
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im in a semi same dilemma, though not as severe. yumyum was born last october & i'd like to have an outdoor party cause our apartment & funds arent big enough, but it'll probably be too cold. thats an interesting idea! having it during summer, like their 6 month mark. never heard it but i like it! i'm an april baby and i remember some b-day parties were rained out and boy was that a bummer.
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#7 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 06:02 PM
 
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Never say never is my motto. So I voted other. I would prefer DS and DD keep their actual winter birthdays. But one of them may eventually have a good reason to want to move it, and I'll go with that.

My sisters birthday is Dec 20, mine is Jan 2. Both AWFUL days imo. Everyone has just finished all the Christmas parties, then new year, then oh - FINALLY we are done. Oh no, it's Allison's birthday. My birthday was even forgotten, more than once. Both my sister and I toyed with moving our birthdays until July, but we never did. It just didn't feel "real", and who wanted to wait an extra half a year?
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#8 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 07:43 PM
 
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My mom really wants to throw DS a half birthday party down by her, she's been wanting to throw him a birthday party for the reletives since he was 1 but she's afraid no one will want to travel in January.

Now I'm due with another due right before Christmas. I think there is nothing wrong with it as long as you don't have two birthday parties for them You can avoid calling it a half birthday if that seems weird, and just say its a "summer party" and then you can skip the birthday presents too (an advantage mostly in my opinion).
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#9 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 10:48 PM
 
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won't summer be just as bad though? My brother's birthday is in July and his friends were always away on holiday (or WE were on holiday) so his party always was really limited.

Our older DD's birthday is in April but April is too unpredictable here to have an outdoor party (especially if you're planning a few weeks in advance) We used to live in a REALLY tiny house so no space... We rented out a community centre room. The room was bare but we were able to decorate and it meant that our house wasn't torn apart at the end of the party It made it really fun and the community centre rooms are a very reasonable cost. Maybe you can find a similar room (though it won't help with the weather...)
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#10 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 10:49 PM
 
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I wouldn't. My kids' birthdays are in (late) October and (early) March. Weather is always very iffy. It varies each year - could be gorgeous and 50 or -10 and snowing. I don't know, I just think it sends the message that their real birthday is too much of an inconvenience to everybody so it has to be a different day. It won't be bad weather EVERY year and there's definitely a chance the weather could be bad on their half birthday. It could rain and you'd have to cancel the pool party. There could be a tornado warning so nobody wants to leave the house.

If you wanted to do a dinner outing with the grandparents or something on the half birthday I think that's fine, but I would leave the gift opening and games for the actual birthday. If the weather is to bad for the day of the party, why not just post-pone it til the following weekend?

ETA - I don't think Chuck-e-cheese, pump-it-up, etc are THAT unreasonable. They run about $150-$200 here. We're doing that this year and not feeding everybody (obviously there will be cake and punch though) and it really isn't going to cost us much more than when we have everybody here and serve lunch/dinner.
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#11 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 10:55 PM
 
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My daughters birthday is November 29 (this year it's during Thanksgiving weekend) and my son is February 26. Thankfully we live in a climate that has mild winters. Very rarely does it snow here and if it did it'd be easy to reschedule a home party for the next weekend, so we do not do a half party.

My nephew has a half-birthday party with friends every year because his birthday is right after Christmas so often very few of his friends are in town. He has a family party on his birthday.

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#12 of 69 Old 09-07-2008, 11:55 PM
 
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I haven't personally seen this done, but I have a winter birthday-- 3 days after Christmas. I was always getting the 'joint' gifts, one for both Christmas and my birthday. My birthday definitely got overshadowed by the holidays, not necessarily by my parents. My mom always made a point to celebrate them separately, but it was definitely overlooked by other family members and friends. I asked my mom a few times as a kid to celebrate my half birthday in the summer. I always wanted a swimming party and couldn't do that with a winter birthday. I think it's a great idea! I actually had a friend in school that used to give me my birthday gift on my half birthday, and I loved it.

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#13 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 12:14 AM
 
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My friend's dd was born January 1st. She had one and only one party during that time frame. It was a nightmare.

So every year she has a half birthday--but there is little outside family recognition of her birthday. Her dd understands why, she remebers her New Years nightmare. One thing she likes is that she can have a swim party by doing it during the summer. They do make a joke of it.

Most people give her gifts at her half birthday but not her real birthday. At 10 she is ok with this she just got a bunch of X-mas presents.

We still give her card and/or something small.
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#14 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 12:29 AM
 
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I love parties and I think that if that is when the parents want to give it then it's fine. I'd go.
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#15 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 12:44 AM
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I have two winter (January and February) and one summer. If I did a half birthday due to Ds's winter birthday, the other child would expect the same. This would mean we celebrate 6 birthdays a year. just for kids, no way. I'm not big on parties as it is.
We just found winter party stuff, Ds had a bowling alley party a couple times. And Dd is only three, we did a pizza party, and a small family only one then all our friends at our house this year.
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#16 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 01:18 AM
 
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I have never heard of a "half" birthday party before
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#17 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 01:36 AM
 
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My brother's birthday is Dec 24th and he never wanted a half birthday party, though my mom always offered. My DD was born Dec 29th and I will offer, but I doubt she'll accept. It just doesn't feel like a real birthday celebration that far from the actual date.
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#18 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 01:40 AM
 
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Why not just have a party...... or BBQ, or whatever.

You don't need a birthday to have a party.

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#19 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 06:34 AM
 
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I checked other. Because of the situation here (no extreme weather and lots of people away / busy in the summer) I wouldn't do a 1/2 birthday for my winter kids, but I don't see why you shouldn't. Maybe I should actually do a 1/2 birthday for my July girl. All her friends are away and it's hard to have a party then

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#20 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 06:48 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christian_mom View Post
I do agree with you in regards to the materialistic aspect of things.

That's not the reason for the "half" birthday party. It's so the kids can get together with their friends to celebrate their special day- even though it's not their actual birthday. I hope that makes sense!
You quoted my post before I completed my edit. That's why I edited it. I realized it could have sounded like I was saying that. I wasn't.

The half-birthday parties we've been to very much seemed like the idea was "weather prohibited people from coming... we'll do it when people don't have an excuse and we can get more presents". Those were the parties *I've* witnessed. I didn't want you to think I was saying that about your post.

I agree that it would be fun to just have a "summer celebration" party each year. Invite the kids' friends and just have fun. Spinning it as half-birthday will make people feel like they need to bring presents.
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#21 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 06:55 AM
 
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No. Why, really? Do the summer birthdays have a half-birthday at Christmas/winter to receive even MORE gifts? I think it sends the wrong message. I agree with the PP about it adding to the materialistic "gimme gimme gimme" culture.

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#22 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 06:59 AM
 
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I have a summer and a winter baby. Dh and I also have a winter and summer birthday. We live in New England, so I understand the weather.

It is way, way easier to get kids to come to a winter birthday than a summer birthday, ime. You wouldn't think so, but even with the weather, you're likely to have better luck in the winter. For my dd's birthday, I have to totally seek people out to come to her parties. Very few kids from her class will come. It was the same for me. Birthday parties on vacation, my best friends always away. People are busier.

Some of the best attended parties I've gone to or held have been in the winter. Maybe not too close to Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Years, but moved by a few weeks. Kids are looking for things to do. The weather is a gamble, but around here, it has to be really bad before someone will miss a party.

I'm also kind of superstitious about half birthdays. I like to acknowledge and celebrate pretty close to the actual birthday they came on.
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#23 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 09:38 AM
 
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It's interesting that more than half of the respondents say they wouldn't go to a half birthday party. I wonder if people thought the question was whether they would give a half birthday party for their own kid. It seems strange that so many people would refuse to even go to someone else's party because it wasn't actually on the kid's birthday. I've thought about the half birthday idea because my kids both have winter birthdays. I hadn't thought of it as a way of getting more presents at all. The way I pictured it, we'd have a family celebration at the actual birthday, then a kids' party in the summer, with the same number of presents as if the party were in the winter, but with the ability to have the party outside, and have activities other than sledding.
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#24 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 10:28 AM
 
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DD was born in Feb. We're not planning on a half-birthday at all. Doesn't make much sense to me.

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#25 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 10:35 AM
 
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I'd have the birthday party in the winter when the birthday is, and host some other kind of party during the summer to get together with friends. Summer parties are fun but I'd be a bit weirded out if I got a "half birthday" invitation. Even if you didn't intend it that way, it would still feel like an earlier poster said, that you wanted it in the summer so more people could bring presents. If I knew you really well I'd know that isn't what you meant, but if I just got a card from a friend of my daughter's for something like that, I'd be a bit suspicious, I must admit.
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#26 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 10:39 AM
 
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I would go, sure.
We're Indiana too and my boys were born in Feb. We've had parties that no one could come to due to weather. Last year we actually canceled it and moved it to another week because there was an ice storm. I think the "rescheduled" party got hit with snow. Winter birthdays here are "dicey". It also seems like the holidays and their birthday runs together too much. But my guys are pretty attached to their birthday. If your daughter (she's the oldest I think?) likes the idea I would go for it.

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#27 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 11:33 AM
 
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I put no even though we have gone to a half birthday party. though the circumstances behind that one were her dad having cancer & being treated around her birthday so they never got around to having one.

I think it would honestly confuse your kids more than anything. Will they be okay waiting 6months to have a party?

I understand the weather thing, my oldest's birthday is in November & the weather can be iffy. We deal with the weather more at Christmas though. The other 2 have parties in March & April, the weather can be just as iffy. There though the real problem comes with planning around Easter.

I have parties at my house which yes can get hectic, but if I need to postpone I can.

My younger 2 have birthdays 3 weeks apart(1 year separating them) plus Easter is either in between their birthdays or on my youngests. I try to hold the one in March 1-2 weeks BEFORE her birthday & the one in April 1-2 weeks AFTER her birthday so I have closer to 6 weeks between.
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#28 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 11:51 AM
 
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I voted no.

I could see making an exception one year if something else happened that prevented celebrating (serious illness, a new baby being born that week, etc). But not for weather kind of stuff. I have my birthday at the end of June and could never get a proper party when I was growing up because too many people were leaving on holidays, or my family was leaving a few days before my birthday. Getting people together in the summer is harder than in the winter.

One of my dd's friend has started a tradition of having a Spring party outside at a local park on the last weekend of May every year. It's been happening for 4 years now. The first year she felt like having a party and there was no occasion so they created one. It's nice and casual, families come and go, kids play, parents hangout. Everyone brings some food to share, the hostess brings games (croquet, badminton net, play tent, craft supplies). There is no gift giving involved. Maybe something like that could work too, in addition to a proper birthday in the winter.
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#29 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 02:13 PM
 
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Hi there,,

My 3 oldest kids all have July b-days so we used to do 1/2 b-days during the school year (when they were in elementary) so that they could wear the b-day crown and get cupcakes in class, etc. We saved their party for their actual birthday. With summer vacations and school being out they always are missing some friends who are out of town.

Can't really win either way, I guess :-)

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#30 of 69 Old 09-08-2008, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone for all the replies and shedding the light on all aspects of the idea.

I'm not sure what we'll end up doing but I'm thinking a "Summer Celebration" would be more appropriate than a "half birthday" party. And I'm also thinking of having a late January or even February party for my daughter instead of December or early January and put on the invitation that it may be postponed for crappy weather (not that wording of course).

I had really never thought of it as a second gift fest either. That was/is not our intentions so it was good that that was brought up.

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