Every four years, people born on Feb. 29 celebrate a unique birthday. For every four years that pass, they add only one year to their age.
Celebrating her 14th birthday today is Ann Marie Ropp from Moreland.
“It’s crazy and kind of exciting having a birthday on the 29th,” Ropp said. “It’s a unique day.
“I always have great parties on my birthday,” she said. “My parents, husband, kids and co-workers have always made my birthday special.
“My worst birthday was when I turned 16,” Ropp said. “My friends came with lots of 4-year-old cards and 4-year-old presents. It’s funny now but it wasn’t then.
“My son and I turned 6 the same year,” she said. “My youngest grandchild and I will turn 16 the same year; we will be able to date.
“Having Feb. 29 as a birthday is a little odd and kind of fun, especially after my kids and grandkids learned to enjoy it,” Ropp said.
“My grandkids think it’s special,” she said. “I’m younger than most of my grandchildren so they try to boss me around but it doesn’t work."
She does insist on a birthday celebration each year.
“I don’t care if it’s celebrated on Feb. 28, March 1 or as a birthday week, I have a birthday each year,” she said.
“When renewing my driver’s license, Feb. 29 doesn’t come up as a valid birthdate, so my renewal date on my driver’s license is March 1,” she said.
Ropp has worked in Blackfoot at Dr. Kirt McKinlay’s office for 26 years. She has been Dr. McKinlay’s nurse for the past 16 years.
“I have a special patient who is having her baby today to honor me and my birthday,” Ropp said.
“My parents, Duane and Evelyn Packer, still live in Moreland,” she said. “I live right next door to them.
“Fourteen-year-olds need supervision, right?” she asked.
Ropp and her husband, Daryl, have three grown children and seven grandchildren.
“I’m hoping to live to be a healthy 20-year-old,” said Ropp.