Happy free b-day to me

I’m pretty sure the statute of limitations has run out on this.

It’s embarrassing to admit, but I don’t hate it when a fuss is made over me.  When I was 5 or 6, I went as a guest to my friend’s Sunday school.  I got a prize for being a visitor.  Then the teacher announced another gift for children celebrating a birthday.

It surprises me to this day, but my hand shot up and I informed the class that yes indeed, it was my birthday.  Cue the hullabaloo.

It was nowhere near my birthday.  I’m still ashamed of it.

Earlier this week I celebrated my legitimate birthday.  I won’t reveal my age, but I will admit that Louisa May Alcott and I were in the brownies together.

Louie, as we called her, always brought the best snacks.

It doesn’t matter if I’m 180, when my birthday rolls around I turn into a six-year-old.  I firmly believe that the celebration should last at least a week, and come with special meals, cake, and gifts.  Lots of gifts.

Every year more and more companies with which I do business give me a present on my big day.  And it’s not because I’m special, if you register with them, then you too, can get in on it.


Waffle House is one of my favorites.  Many a birthday dinner has been devoured in one of their booths.  I registered online, and every year receive a certificate for a yummy waffle.  I pay for my own scattered, smothered, covered hash browns.

Krispy Kreme is a gift to humanity.  A warm honey-glazed is a fried miracle.  After signing up, I get a free fresh, birthday donut and a drink.  God bless America and Krispy Kreme.

Take your pick…

My favorite take-out for the rare occasion when I don’t feel like cooking dinner is Panera Bread.  On my birthday I get a free pastry (I usually go for their M&M cookie or orange scone).

They had me at frosting.

Gigi’s is a cupcake store.  Not only do they have the best vanilla/vanilla cupcake I’ve ever had (called the wedding cake), they have a rotating menu of flavors like chocolate salted caramel, orange dreamsicle, and Scarlett’s red velvet.  Pay them a visit, pick up a cupcake lover’s reward card, and get a free full-size cupcake of your choice on your big day.

Carrying a concealed sweet tooth?  Applebees, TGI Friday’s, Boston Market, and Longhorn Steakhouse offer free dessert, and Arby’s give away a free milkshake with any purchase.  Baskin Robbins, Dairy Queen, Dippin’ Dots, Maggie Moo’s, Marble Slab, and Ben & Jerry’s?  Just free ice cream.  TCBY gives you free yogurt and $3 off the price of a cake.

It’s possible to eat yourself into a coma on your big day.  Bruegger’s offers a free bagel with cream cheese with a drink purchase.  Moe’s Southwest will feed you a free entrée and chips and salsa.  IHOP gives you dinner.  Registering with Zaxby’s scores a free nibbler and free meal deal.  Wingstop; free fries, Which Wich; free sandwich, Ruby Tuesdays and Red Robin will each give you a birthday burger.


To register, visit the stores, their websites or Facebook pages.

The final item isn’t a freebie, but I can’t celebrate my birthday without it.  Dewey’s in Winston-Salem has been in business for 85 years.  They make the best birthday cake in the world (I get mine with extra frosting).  My happiest moment each year is my first bite into the first slice.

Make sure you ask for extra frosting.

My saddest?  The last bite of the last slice.

Thanks for your time.

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