Re: I could use some advice...
DH and I would often forget our nieces' and nephews' birthdays - we'd keep meaning to get something for them, and then forget... A couple of years ago, DH's brother said, hey, the kids would really love it if you called them on your birthday; shall I call and remind you a few days before?
We felt awful about it, but really grateful he said something. And now we at least send them something off their amazon gift lists and give them a phone call
Mama to my sweetheart, Jamila (5/2011); wife to my mensch, Josh. Eleanor to you