Parties and group events may have been canceled for now to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but that hasn’t stopped friends and family from celebrating. As strange as the last month has been, people across the country have found ways to make sure their loved ones still feel loved and that things worth celebrating don’t get overlooked.
Despite not being at Harding with her friends, senior Macey Vaught celebrated her 21st birthday with her family after two years of celebrating the day at school.
When Vaught was growing up, she said her mom decorated her room while she was still sleeping on the morning of her birthday, then her family would wake her up in the morning with singing and eat cake for breakfast. It was a treat to get to experience it again after several years without, Vaught said.
“It’s so fun, and it has been one of my favorite family traditions that we do for everybody’s birthday,” Vaught said. “I am very thankful to have grown up in a family that makes birthdays a big deal.”
Vaught also said she got to FaceTime her suitemates later that evening.
“I love living with those girls so much,” Vaught said. “It was very special that we all got to FaceTime and celebrate even though we aren’t together.”
This birthday ended up being one of Vaught’s most memorable and among her top three favorites, she said.
The celebrations don’t stop with birthdays. Juniors Laurel Beshirs and Lindlee Moon celebrated the upcoming marriage of their friend, senior Abbey Lusk.
Beshirs and Moon started planning a wedding shower for their friend in February, but when life took an unexpected turn, they had to make a new plan.
Beshirs said she was disappointed about their original plan getting flopped, but she and Moon developed a new plan to host a virtual wedding shower through Zoom. Beshirs sent out a group message to friends and told them to send a wedding gift to her house, which she then delivered to Lusk’s home as a surprise.
“It kind of felt like we were all there, even though we weren’t,” Beshirs said. “I feel very blessed to have the technology to be able to do this.”
The shower was put together so smoothly that Beshirs said she knew God was working through it all.
“I could see the Lord working through everyone’s willingness to do it, and everyone was so excited,” Beshirs said. “You could see the love that we all have for each other.”
Senior Caroline Nesbitt found ways to celebrate her sister-in-law’s 16th birthday, even though she couldn’t throw the big party that many would expect to come with a momentous birthday.
Nesbitt said her older sister-in-law covered their refrigerator in pictures of the birthday girl to start out the day, and the whole family was able to gather for a birthday lunch of potato soup, Dora Express for dinner and strawberry cheesecake for dessert. Luckily, the Department of Motor Vehicles was still open, so she was able to do what every 16-year-old wants to do — get her driver’s license.
“It was low-key, but honestly probably not super far off from what we would have done anyway,” Nesbitt said. “It’s been really neat to spend one-on-one time with [my husband’s] family.”