Quarantine Diaries: Part 27 – Anastasia and Pandemic Birthday Number 2

We are now heading toward celebrating DC’s 2nd pandemic birthday.

I feel awful because he is still waiting for his make-up birthday with his friends from last year because who knew back then we would still be in the midst of a pandemic. At the time I thought we would be able to celebrate “properly” sometime over the summer. Boy, was I wrong!

Making it even worse is that this will be his 30th birthday. Thirty is a pretty big deal and before all of this “sickness” started we were hoping to have a big bash with his friends like we did when they all turned 21 within weeks of each other.

This year, celebrating my and his birthdays seems to be extra important to him and of course it is …

He has not really been able to go anywhere for fun in almost exactly a year. All he really looks forward to is getting takeout a couple of times per week.

Take Another Step: Quarantine Diaries Part 26 – Birthday Anticipation

He already has his “takeout dinner” planned – pizza, wings and of course, cake.

The pizza must have pepperoni and cheese and the cake must have large frosting flowers; preferably in red or pink.

His birthday list is the same, or close to the same as it is for every birthday, Christmas or monthly Dollar Store visit:

29 markers (a change in number since the 72 markers he wanted for Christmas)



Jelly Beans

Yes, I know that these are the things that make him happy – and he will get them, but I am always looking for something that will really blow him away. It is not easy and I do not always succeed.

DC has always loved the movie, Anastasia. He has been watching it since it came out in 1997.

Over the last year or two it has become his go-to favorite, over and above all of the Disney princesses that he loves so much. Even more-so since the pandemic began.

The book is always in his hand and at the top of the book pile on the kitchen chair. He reads it every night… aloud before bed. He acts out scenes (very well, I might add) on a regular basis. He regularly informs me that John Cusack is the voice of Dimitri and Meg Ryan is the voice of Anya.

Of course Angela Lansbury is the voice of “The Grand Duchess, Marie, not Mrs. Potts and not Miss Price or Jessica”(because he must also tell me who they played before but are not playing now) and Bernadette Peters as “Sophie, but not Angelique (Beauty and the Beast Enchanted Christmas), Lady Larken (Once Upon a Mattress), The Witch (The Original “Into the Woods”) and The Stepmother (Cinderella). He will also add that John Cusack is not Jessie in Toy Story because that is his sister.

This movie is 24 years old and is not a Disney movie (although believe it is now considered a Disney movie?), so there was not much Anastasia merchandise to be had at the time it came out and even less now, 24 years later.

One of those accidental gift finds…DC wants pretty much the same things all of the time (or something so old or obscure that I have to resort to eBay). It’s hard to find him something other than the regular things on his list that will really make him happy. He wanted an Anastasia book (he already has a few). While searching to find one that he didn’t have, I came across a music box that plays “Once Upon a December”, the song that he haunted his virtual camp music class with all summer. Score!!!!!! He’s been playing it all morning!!! I also found an ornament for him and one for Mrs. H as a reminder that she hasn’t had to read Anastasia with him since March due to the pandemic.

Take Another Step – Anastasia

He still plays that song on the music box every night before bed.

So…. in order to make this birthday special, I went on a mission to find an Anastasia doll. Not an easy task since as I said, the movie is 24 years old.

I searched and searched and…

I found one!!!!! ONE!

Not only did I find the one Anastasia but I found Dimitri!!!!!

There was only one of those as well and being collectors items or not readily available ….. Ka Ching.

(It is ridiculous just how excited I was getting and still am, about finding these things)

I also came across a set with Anastasia AND Empress Marie (I confess that I am confused as to whether she is called Empress Marie or Grand Duchess Marie – but whatever). There was only one of those as well so I hemmed and hawed and went back and forth with it. I knew he would love having both of them but I also knew that Dimitri was just as important. I finally talked myself into it and decided I would save that set for Christmas.

During this Anastasia “spree”, I also came across a necklace… Together in Paris. Again, because Anastasia merchandise is so hard to find, I bought it without really thinking about it.

After the purchase was made I started wondering just what I thought he was going to do with it. I was thinking that maybe we could attach it to his key chain or his jacket zipper. I did not know, but then I had a thought.

DC loves to give me gifts. Although it does not always occur to him to want to get a gift for me, he gets really excited and takes full credit for any gift I receive that has his name on it. Now I rarely wear jewelry. I actually only wear it when DC presents me with a new “heart necklace”- his go-to gift when he is involved in picking the gift out, but I thought he would be really excited to give me the necklace for my birthday on Saturday.

Instead of just wrapping it up and putting his name on it (I have done that) I thought that I should let him make the decision himself. Doug is taking him to the Dollar Store this week so he can get his new supply of Band-Aids and markers and also to pick out something for me. I gave the necklace to Doug with instructions to show it to him and to see if he would like to “give it to Mom for her birthday”.

He may just opt to keep it for himself, I don’t know.

Either way, in a few days I will have a new necklace or DC will have a new keychain.

Whatever happens with the necklace, I am sure that DC will be over the top excited with his gifts when his birthday rolls around!

Is it weird that I am this excited about finding these things?


During all of these searches, I discovered there is/was a musical. I knew nothing about this. I haven’t researched it any more than that but, I will. If it is recent, it will certainly be something to look into when this pandemic is over.

Quarantine Diaries – All