Every year for the past dozen or so, I’ve made personalized calendars for grandparents and us. About seven years ago, my friend Jennifer gave me some calendar-making software that made including everyone's birthday a breeze. I just entered the names once and then each year they were automatically there. This year Jennifer converted to Shutterfly’s calendar program and, being a good, obedient friend, I did the same, even though this meant re-inputting everyone’s birthdays. (And for my mother's calendar, I had to input the dates when people close to us have died.)
Since this was a pretty big task, naturally I put it off for as long as possible. Shutterfly’s set-up was easy to follow, and this weekend I began inputting dates for our calendars. Keep in mind that I make four and no two have the exact same birthdates posted, therefore this involves some coordination on my part to make sure someone doesn’t get a calendar and think, Who the heck is Joe Blow and why is he having a birthday on my calendar?
My mother likely keeps up with everyone she’s ever met and when they were born. I’ve convinced her to whittle down her card-giving list and now she only keeps up with 205 birthdates/anniversaries/deathdates. It’s really 205. I just counted. I called her last night after I ordered her calendar to let her know it was on its way.
Me: I just ordered your calendar and it will come directly to you from Shutterfly.
She: Oh, good. Thanks.
Me: One problem. Shutterfly will only allow you to list three events on each date. On two occasions you had four. On February 14 you had three birthdays, so I had to leave off Valentine’s Day.
She: That’s fine.
Me: And then also in February, you had four people with birthdays on the same day, so I dropped one of them.
She: That’s okay. Who did you drop?
Me: Someone named Madge Waters.*
She: Oh, that’s fine. She died this year.
Me: (laughing and trying not to) I guess I picked the right one!
Lesson: Be careful what you offer to do for people. Sometimes there is no end in sight.
*not her real name