wanted to celebrate her thirteenth birthday with a party. She had never had a
birthday party and many of the other children that she knew did. They seemed to
have so much fun and got so many nice presents. She thought and thought about
it. She knew that her parents couldn’t do it for her. They were refugees and
had hardly enough money to feed the family.
decided to take matters into her own hands. She had learned somewhere that you
shouldn’t depend on others and what you do for yourself is done. So, she set
about planning her big day. She asked the “Schammes” in the synagogue if he
would let her use the big social hall on a Sunday afternoon, the week of her
birthday. She also decided on the menu. She saved her money from selling bottles
and babysitting and bought the ingredients for a cake. She also decided to have
nuts. She went to the corner grocery store and found that the nuts were very
expensive, even the peanuts. She then spotted some small nuts that looked like
acorns which were cheap. She bought some of those and some hard candy. With her
purchases under her arm she went home with a bag of party ingredients.
her Mom was out of the kitchen, Droozy got busy and baked. She carefully
followed a recipe that her mother had given her. It was for chocolate cake. She
was certain that all the kids would like chocolate cake. She was busy for hours
getting everything together. She had much cleaning up to do after baking since
everything seemed full of flour, sugar, and a chocolate paste, made from cocoa.
Even the floor was dirty. Droozy found her shoes sticking to the floor as she
walked. She had to wash the floor with soap and water. She had a hard time
because she knew she had to be careful not to waste too much soap. The baking
pans were hard to clean and she had to do much rubbing and scrubbing. All the
time she was busy doing all this hard work she thought of the wonderful presents
she would get from her guests.
was afraid to ask the children to come, so sister Fanny did most of the inviting
for her. The Abners had no telephone, so Fanny had to do it in person. She
seemed so brave! Droozy was worried that the children would refuse her and would
not want to attend her party.
big day came. Droozy went to the Temple early and carried the cake, the candy
and the nuts. She also had a dairy wagon stop by to deliver some slices of ice
cream to add to the celebration.
after the other of the children came, boys and girls the same age as Droozy.
They brought her gifts wrapped up in pretty colorful paper, ribbons and bows.
Droozy could hardly wait to open them. She was polite, however, because she had
been taught not to show she was too eager to want gifts.
after their arrival everyone sat down at large tables and ate. The cake was very
sweet and the ice cream slices had melted a little, but most of the children
seemed to enjoy the ice cream, anyway. After that the presents were opened and
the children admired each gift and said good things about some and unkind things
about others. The boys were especially loud and began to run around the hall
punching one another, laughing and pulling the girls’ hair. Some wanted to
play “spin the bottle” but Droozy didn’t know what that was.
acorn nuts could not be opened. Droozy did not bring a nut cracker, but even if
she had, the nuts were impossible to crack. It didn’t take long before the
boys were throwing those hard nuts at each other. One of them missed and hit
Fanny in the eye. She was so angry that she screamed, ran over to where the
birthday child, her poor sister, was standing, and slapped her hard. Poor Droozy!
She was so embarrassed, she fought back the tears. She didn’t want to be there
any more, she wanted to go home, she wanted no presents and no more birthday
party, not now, nor ever again!