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Monday, April 9, 2012

When in Rome: German Birthday Parties

Lilo's family was here for the weekend... which meant we got to see Dianna and her family.  Dianna is technically our landlady on paper, but since she lives three hours away we usually direct any tenant issues to Lilo.  I wish they lived closer because they are super cool and I love visiting with them. 

But that's not the point of this post.  The point is that I learned a really fun tradition that the Germans do and I want to do it, too!  It's kind of a "birthday open house" type party.  

Dianna mentioned to me that Saturday was Lilo's birthday (Lilo had *forgotten* to mention this to me) and so I made her a card and helped Lily deliver it Saturday morning.  Lilo always loves when we visit and invited us back down for cake and coffee in the afternoon.  I thought it was going to be just an informal family get together that we were crashing.

But when we came back down it was an adorable little set up, complete with flowers and fine china and beautiful cakes and treats.  And other people (besides family).  Apparently people just come and go throughout the day, visiting with the birthday girl :o) 

We got to visit with Lilo's oldest daughter (who's name, I'm ashamed to admit, I did not catch... I have a hard time remembering the more unique German names and she also said it really quietly.  So Oldest Daughter she is) which was super cool cause we hadn't yet met her.  She lives a ways away as well. 

*side note*  Jesse and I chuckle when they say "well, we live so far away so we aren't able to come visit very often".  Both daughters live about three hours away and visit about as often as we used to visit Cape Cod when we lived in Corning... a 7 hour trip.  The different perspective on what's "too far away" to drive is funny to us.  But then again, gas is REALLY expensive here.

But back to the birthday bash.  Lilo and Oldest Daughter shoved so much cake and coffee down our throats that I was literally shaking from the sugar and caffeine by the end :o)  But we sat down there and visited for about two hours. 

I guess this birthday open house thing doesn't always happen... but especially when you get as old as Lilo, they really consider it a reason to celebrate the whole day long!

And I do, too!  Birthday open houses, anyone?  Let's start the trend!


  1. SURE!!!! you are invited to my b-day open house on Sat the 14th - - you better be there, too!!!

  2. Haha, yeah, Europeans have such a different conception of distance. This summer I spent a couple weeks hiking with this Dutch guy, and when he told me he lived about 40 minutes from Amsterdam, I was like "Well that's pretty close." And he was like "Well, actually, we don't think of that as being very close."

    1. Exactly! It's statements like that (especially since they're dead serious) that make us chuckle. I had a conversation with a German girl about it, though and she had a good point... we can drive "across our country" in the same amount of time that it would take them to get all across Europe. I think Germany is the size of Montana. So I guess they look at me a little funny when I tell them we drove 22 hours from MS to NY (though, I don't want to repeat that trip again any time soon!)