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  • February 29th 2012 is your birthday.

    You arrived in a hurry 16 years ago –a new life in the world - our fair haired beautiful boy!

    You are one of approximately 4.8 million people worldwide who will celebrate their birthday on this day. That amounts to about 0.07% of the earth’s inhabitants!

    Your special birthday is thanks to Julius Caesar who created Leap Year in 45 BC, to simplify the marking of the passage of time throughout the year. The early Romans had a 355 day calendar and in order to keep festivals occurring around the same season each year, a 22 or 23 day month was created every second year. Julius Caesar with the aid of his astronomer Sosigenes, decided to simplify matters and he added days to different months of the year to create the 365 day calendar. Every fourth year following the 28th February, one day was to be added, making every fourth year a Leap Year. As the year is slightly less than 365.25 days long, adding an extra day every four years means that about 3 extra days are added over a period of 400 years. To counteract this imbalance, only one out of every four century years are considered as a leap year. Therefore 1700, 1800, and 1900 were not leap years, and 2100 will not be a leap year, but 1600 and 2000 were leap years, because those numbers are evenly divisible by 400.

    Traditionally Leap Year Day is the day that women may ‘pop the question’ and propose. It is believed this tradition was started here in Ireland in the 5th century when St. Bridget complained to St. Patrick about women having to wait for so long for a man to propose. According to legend, St. Patrick said the yearning females could propose on this one day in February during the leap year.

    You are one of around 100 teenagers living in Ireland who will celebrate their 16th birthday on this date – it is the only time that you will have reason to celebrate your birthday on your ‘official’ day while you are at secondary school – so live it up and enjoy the day – like all your ‘official’ birthdays it’s a landmark in your life.

    Happy Birthday to you, our darling Leapling and to all Leaplings worldwide! May you stay forever young!

    Leap year information courtesy of About.com (Statistics and history by Courtney Taylor; Tradition by Sheri & Bob Stritof)
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