Birthday Traditions in Russia

             Birthday is the dearly - beloved holiday with the Russian families.Each
families spends some time to prepare their homes, presents and entertainment programmes for it. Some families make special cards - invitations and give
them to their friends and classmates. In our country the birthday is celebrated with the friends or relatives at home. Some people prefer do celebrate the birthday in the nature or in a cafe. At schools, camps and in the kindergartens they use to make a group celebration for kids who are born in a certain season or month to congratulate the birthday kids and to hand them presents. Usually a parent council is responsible to prepare the party, to collect the money and to buy the presents and prizes.

             One of the laws of the birthday is to make a special joyous atmosphere. In the morning the parents wake up the birthday child with a merry song, There is music at home and mother and father are the first persons who congratulate their child. The birthday child finds presents under the pillow or on the table near the bed. Then there is time to prepare the meal for the guests. In some families the birthday meal is made as a surprise for the birthday child. It is tasty and nice decorated. Here are some of meals : King Fish, Holidays Ships, Fire Volcanoes, Peacock Tail...In many families they use to mark the height of the child on his/her birthday on the wall or on the door with the note of the date. Traditionally the pictures are taken. In some families they make video on this day to see the changes of their child from one year to the other.

              Guests usually come in the second part of the day. They are welcomed with a smile. Guests congratulate the birthday child and hand him/her the presents just after coming. Lovely words, kisses and presents are the way to show love to him/her. Sometimes guests pull the birthday child's ears as many times as old he/she is. We put a large paper on the door and guests draw pictures for her and write their congratulations and wishes. We keep those papers as a nice memory on this day. What about the presents, they are usually pets, soft toys, cards with poems and wishes, books.

              In the Russian families is a tradition first to give guests a good dinner and only after that to entertain them. On the table there are usually 6-7 different salads, some fish or meat dishes and many things for the dessert: fruit, ice-cream, sweets, sweet drinks. Traditionally there is a cake with candles on it according to the number of years of the birthday child. As there so many sweet things on the table some people name this day not birthday but Jam Day.

              After the meal there is usually an entertainment programme. It might be a home concert, a fairy tale or any other performance in which the family and sometimes the guests play their roles. After the performance all dance. 

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