A Birthday Party 一次生日聚会

我最近参加了一个为两位亲爱朋友举办的生日聚会。因为她们的生日只相差一天,我们就把她们的生日合在一起来庆祝。这是她们三十三岁生日聚会。格蕾丝是一年前从韩国首尔来的,而瀚只是在去年十二月才从中国广州来美国。

按照我们的惯例,我们会给寿星一个有特别装饰的蛋糕。有的时候我们自制一个蛋糕,但是通常我们从蛋糕店里买一个蛋糕回来,然后在家里,我们在上面加上我们自制的特殊装饰。我们买罐装的为装饰蛋糕而特制的糖面,然后就从罐里把糖面挤出来,一边挤一边就在蛋糕上写上“生日快乐”的字样。当然,我们也把寿星的名字也写上。有时我们会为一个寿星装饰如上面照片所示那样的糕点,或者装饰一个纸杯蛋糕。装饰完了蛋糕,我们就会在蛋糕上插蜡烛,在生日聚会的时候就把蜡烛点上。当蜡烛点上以后,我们大家一起对寿星唱“生日快乐歌”。因为上面照片的蛋糕是为瀚制作的,那生日快乐歌就唱成:

祝你生日快乐,祝你生日快乐,祝你生日快乐,亲爱的瀚,祝你生日快乐!

对于孩子们的生日,他们几岁在他们的生日蛋糕上就有几支小蜡烛。所以当一个孩子十岁的生日时候,蛋糕上就有是支蜡烛了。(当一个人长大成人了,那就没有可能在一个蛋糕上方那么多蜡烛了。其实,点那么多蜡烛要小心火灾啊!)对一个孩子的生日聚会,习惯上家长都会预备一些气球和其他一些五彩缤纷装饰品。对于成年人的生日,只有在他们的大生日的时候才会有这样的事情,比如在他们40岁生日的时候,或者50岁的时候。通常在一个人的50岁生日的时候,会有一个“走下坡路”的生日聚会。(“走下坡路”的意思就是他已经开始了他的下半生,已经要开始看到人生的尽头了。)

通常亲朋好友都会向寿星赠送生日礼物。我们的生日聚会中没有礼物,但是我们赠送生日卡片。当然,对孩子们那时另作别论,我们为给孩子们生日礼物和生日卡片,或者生日卡片和一些钱,代替生日礼物。切生日蛋糕的时候,按惯例,寿星先拿蛋糕。当大家都吃完蛋糕,聚会聚会就会进入游戏或者一些团契活动。至少我们的生日聚会都是这样。吃完以后,我们就打牌,玩我们喜爱的纸牌游戏,直到很晚。总的来说,这是一个欢快的时间,一个庆祝的时间,生日聚会就是应该这样的。


讨论问题:
1. 在五十岁的时候,通常会有一个什么样的生日聚会?

2.  在孩子们的过生日的时候,可以给生日卡片和什么东西就可以不给礼物了?

3.  在你那里是怎样庆祝生日的?

4.  请告诉我们您所经历过的最难忘的生日是怎么样的?

I recently attended the birthday party of two dear friends. Since their birthdays are only a day apart we did them together. Both of my friends turned 33 this year. Grace is from Seoul, South Korea and has lived in America for 1 year. Han is from Guangzhou, China and just came to America in December.

It is our custom to give a decorated cake to the person on their birthday. Sometimes we bake the cake ourselves, but many times we buy a cake from the store and finish decorating it at home. We buy icing in small tubes that can be squeezed and write “Happy Birthday” on the cake. We will also write the person’s name. Sometimes we will decorate cookies (as in the picture) or cupcakes for one’s birthday. After the cake is decorated we place candles on the cake. When the time comes for the party the candles are lit. After the candles are lit everyone sings Happy Birthday to the person. Since the cake in the picture is for Han the song would go like this:

Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear Han, Happy Birthday to you!

For children we will put a small candle for each year they have been alive. So if a child is 10 we will place 10 small candles on the cake. (When a person becomes older it is harder to have that many candles on the cake. In fact, it might become a fire hazard.) At the parties of children it is customary for the parents to decorate with balloons and other colorful decorations. Adults will do this for a major birthday, like when a person turns 40 and/or 50. It is common to have an “Over the Hill” birthday party for adults turning 50. (Over the hill means a person is past the middle years of life and are now on the downhill side going towards the end of life.)

It is also customary for friends and family to give gifts to those having a birthday. For our party gifts were not expected, so we give greeting cards instead. At a child’s party we would give a gift and a card or we might just give a card with money inside. It is also customary for the birthday person to have the first piece of cake after it is cut. After people enjoy the cake and the person has opened their gifts the party usually moves along with games and social activities. This was true for our party. After eating we all played one of our favorite card games until late. Overall, it was a wonderful time of celebration and fun, just as a birthday party should be.


QUESTIONS:

1.    1. For adults turning 50 it is common to have what kind of birthday party?

2.    2. For children it is okay to give a greeting card with what, instead of gift?

3.    3. What customs do you have for celebrating one’s birthday?

4. Tell us about one of the best birthday’s you have experienced?
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