What I’m Doing Now…

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Popped over to Katie180 and saw she’d been making a list.  I decided to follow suit and post my own list here.  I kind of like doing this sort of thing… I will post the list at the end.  Why don’t you do it as well

Making :  Some changes.  Have taken a long hard look at myself of late, after getting sick for the third time in as many weeks and I think it’s time to do things a bit differently.  Watch this space.

Cooking : Spag bol.  Comfort food, easy to freeze, easy to thaw, easy to pop in the microwave ready for dinner after coming home at 6pm on a winter’s night.

Drinking :  Red cordial as a very special treat.  Ms11 found a brand new “punch fountain” at the local op shop and we’re giving it a run tonight to help mum’s husband celebrate his 62nd birthday.

Reading:  Lonely.  By Emily White.  It’s a condition I know only too well.

Wanting:  To stop feeling tired and sick.

Looking:  Tired after a late night at the Opera House watching Ms11’s choir performance.

Playing:  A Thousand Years by Christina Perri.  I just like it.

Wasting:  Time.  A little bit.  I know I shouldn’t.

Sewing:  Curtains for the bathroom.  It’s taken me a year to get around to it.

Wishing:  I could find the energy to make the changes I need to make.

Enjoying:  Having the folks here visiting.  I love a bit of family time.

Waiting:  For my new Optimum blender from Froothie.  I just CANNOT wait!!

Liking:  Reading foodie blogs, especially the ones with great green smoothie recipes.

Wondering:  Where I will stay when I go down to my beloved Melbourne in September.

Loving:  This list!

Hoping:  That one day I will meet a nice man who thinks I’m a nice woman.  I have hope but no faith that this will actually happen.

Marvelling:  At the fact that both of my daughters can now say they have performed at the Opera House.

Needing:  More motivation.

Smelling:  The first perfect pink rose of the season.  Intoxicating scent.

Wearing:  Trackies and slippers and a scarf.  I’m cold and my throat is sore.

Following:  Homo Erectus – @PiloceneBloke on Twitter.  I love his tweets.  They keep me amused.

Noticing:  Dappled afternoon sunlight

Knowing:  That I’m incredibly lucky most of the time.

Thinking:  About work, stupidly.

Feeling:  Cold.

Bookmarking:  The Wellness Warrior, lots of great recipes and positive thinking.

Opening:  The door to two young Mormon chappies, who I politely sent on their way.

Giggling:  At the sweet earnestness of the Mormon chappies who couldn’t have chosen a more difficult person to convert.

Feeling:  Relieved that I was able to get my car serviced and I was charged the same amount I was quoted

Here’s the list – go for it, can’t wait to read what you’ve written!

Making :
Cooking :
Drinking :
Reading:
Wanting:
Looking:
Playing:
Wasting:
Sewing:
Wishing:
Enjoying:
Waiting:
Liking:
Wondering:
Loving: 
Hoping:
Marvelling:
Needing:
Smelling:
Wearing:
Following:
Noticing:
Knowing:
Thinking:
Feeling:
Bookmarking:
Opening:
Giggling:
Feeling:

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The Wardrobe of a Middle Aged Woman

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In the brilliant Postcards from the Edge, written by the talented Carrie Fisher, there is a scene where Shirley McLaine claims to be middle aged.  “Oh yeah”, scoffs Meryl Streep who is playing her daughter.  “How many 120 year old women do you know?”  This scene has been playing in my head a lot lately as I have to admit that at age 44, I have reached middle age.  Big sigh.  I’ve never really had a problem with getting older.  I feel that with each year that I’m still here, that’s a bonus.  But I find negotiating the peaks and crevices (and I’m not just talking about my face – boom-tish!) of getting older to be somewhat precarious.  Especially when it comes to dressing.

I have a tween and a teen and I don’t want to be like be like Demi Moore, spotted out and about with her teenaged daughter wearing exactly the same outfit.  Fitted pencil dress, impossibly high platform stillettos and straighty straight straight hair.  Shudder.  Although obviously I would like to be as thin and rich as Ms Moore, just without all the issues which go with.  Basically I just want to look as I still feel.  Vibrant, outgoing, life loving and ready for at least another lifetime if not more.

But sometimes I get tired.  And there’s a mortgage to pay and apparently, the bank doesn’t look too kindly on skipping payments in order to fund an ongoing botox regime.  Also, a lot of the time I can’t be bothered going for a run and during these long winter months, carbs seem to be more friendly than any other food option.  So you can imagine, what I see in the mirror doesn’t quite reflect what I see in my minds eye.  So I’ve started to wear the same sort of thing to work each day.  A lot of this is black, I cannot tell a lie.  And I feel like I jazz it up (my mother’s phrase) with a well placed scarf.  I have rather a few, really gorgeous scarves of varying shades and patterns so I just throw them about my neck, whack on a pair of fabulous earrings then away I go.

But the other day I noticed something.  I am not the only 40 something who does this.

Recently, when in a meeting and consumed with boredom, I took the chance to indulge myself in a bit of people watching amongst the others in the room.  It’s harder to do this in a meeting space because often, other equally bored people are doing the same and you can get caught.  But it’s a small price to pay.

I took stock of the fact that everyone in the room was a woman and the majority were women of about 40 and above, myself included.  And EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM HAD A SCARF ON!  Varying colours, embellishments, lengths etc but it was clear to me that each and every one of them had put their outfits on that morning (all beige or all black) and then finished it with a scarf.

IS THIS THE WARDROBE OF EVERY MIDDLE AGED WOMAN?? Sorry.  I realize I am shouting but here I was thinking I was being a bit creative, but apparently, this is just a part of being middle aged.

What am I going to do?  Do I stop wearing scarves?  Do I take out a loan and completely re-stock my wardrobe?  Do I dye my hair platinum blonde in an effort to stand out amongst the sea of varying shades of “home colour kit” brunettes* to “can’t be arsed to dye it” greys?  Or do I snap the hell out of it and remind myself that I am a role model to my two young daughters and there are more important things to be focusing on than the fact that I look (and dress) my age?

Thoughts?

*I fall into this category.. partial to “Iced Chocolate”..

There’s Always One..

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A decent proportion of my job entails going to various workshops, conferences, forums and so on.  I variously suffer through willing myself not to nod off to being actively engaged and not wanting it to end.  The people I encounter are usually big on social justice so we are fairly like minded and mostly I find meeting these new people interesting.

But as sure as there will be a small dish of Mentos on every table, there is always one person in the audience who tries to take the lead in these events.  Always one (sometimes more, depending on the size of the event) who has to try and focus on their own agenda or who thinks they know more than the presenter or who is just big pain in the backside.

Today was no different.  Off I went to yet another local club (sometimes RSL, sometimes Diggers – I think these mean the same thing).  I headed into the conference room and took my place.  For reasons which I can’t explain, the attendees at this forum were an unfriendly lot but there was coffee so I found myself in a forgiving mood.  Not for long.

I sat through a spectacularly dull presentation, deeply statistical and boring as batshit.  The presenter read from a bunch of papers which were exact copies of the information laden and soporific powerpoint slides that were showing.  When the second presenter got up and started discussing data and how this could be used in our industry, one woman got up on her high horse and that was the end of the structured presentation.  Now, a skilled facilitator can reign these pains in the posterior in with a well-worded rebuttal so things can swiftly move forward.  Alas, this mornings presenter possessed no such skill.  The woman in question, the “one” if you will, banged on and on and on about things which both could not be impacted upon and could not be changed in this forum and yet she went for it anyway.  I slid down in my chair and prayed for mercy.

Finally we broke for morning tea and I was briefly soothed by coffee and a piece of cake with a pleasant, although unidentifiable flavour.  The minute we got back she started in again, brought a few cronies along with her for the ride and the entire timetable got blown out by an hour.  At 12.25pm the facilitator announced we would be stopping for lunch in five minutes time.  This seemed to spur the “one” on and it was another 30 minutes before we finally ground to a halt.

Popping Mentos at a rate of knots just to stop myself shouting “Oh for Christ’s sake will you be quiet!”, the whole experience was really rather painful.

There should be some sort of “one strike and you’re out” situation where anyone who goes on for too long, or who purports to be cleverer than everyone else in the room is red carded and escorted from the premises.  It certainly would make for a more time efficient and pleasant experience for everyone.  Well me anyway…

Tooth-Hurty

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Like the vast majority of the population, I hate going to the dentist.  Hate it, hate it, hate it.  My mother, ever diligent, regularly took us to the dentist throughout our childhoods and I dreaded it every time.  Because as I was lowered backwards in the chair, by a man whose questionable breath was a testament to his own lack of dental hygiene, I always knew what was coming.  He would poke around in my mouth with one of those awful pointy tools and inevitably call out at least one filling which needed to be done.  I cried every time.

You would have thought that regular dentist visits would mitigate the need for ever more fillings but it seems that genetics, a lack of fluoride in the water and yes, I’ll say it, my fairly strong attraction to sweet, sweet sugar has meant that whatever dentist I happen to be going to, can be well assured of being able to cover the first class fare for a European holiday that year.

After I left home I avoided the dentist for a long time.  It felt like freedom.  Until of course, that awful tooth aching feeling emerged and I knew I had no choice but to go.  Nightmare.  When I scraped up enough money to travel to England in my early 20’s, I used the local dental hospitals when things got too painful and when I landed a temp job which had a dental plan attached to it, I used that for a while too because it only cost me 25 quid a visit and the dentist didn’t scrimp on the lidocaine.  I digress but has anyone ever said an injection didn’t hurt because of that useless numbing gel they put on your gum first?  I highly doubt it.

Anyway, last week I bit into something and felt one of my back teeth wobble.  After gingerly feeling around with my tongue I realized one of my older fillings had broken.  That sinking feeling took over and with heavy heart, I set off to the dentist on Saturday.   I wasn’t feeling well and was hoping it would be quick patch up job but alas, it was not to be.  The dentist said it was a big filling, would have to be replaced and oh, she had some new extra strength numbing juice and did I want that?  Yes please said I.  So she proceeded to insert a very long needle into the softest part of the back of my mouth.  It didn’t “sting a bit”, it really hurt.  Then a seering pain erupted in my ear.  Tears streamed down my cheeks and I felt like an idiot (I’m supposed to be a grown up for heaven’s sake).  An idiot in pain but an idiot nonetheless.

The procedure took an hour, I had to have four injections into my gum plus additional injections directly into my inflamed tooth because the bastard nerve was exposed and I have a very low threshold for pain.  I can admit this., I see no heroics in putting up with pain.  I had epidurals when my labour pain got too bad but I can honestly say I would rather give birth to 10 pound triplets with no pain relief than to have an exposed nerve in my tooth even slightly touched.  Oh my god.

When I finally shuffled out, mouth swollen to Jolie size, I was hit with a whopping $300 fee.  Thankfully I have dental cover and this meant I only paid about half of that.  Which is still equivalent to my weekly grocery bill.  And this got me thinking, yet again of the appalling state of dental cover in this country.  The so-called lucky country where we should have a system where an essential service is accessible to all but where people wrench their own rotting teeth from their heads with pliers because they can’t afford to pay for treatment and the waiting lists at public dentists go on for years.  I am lucky.  Yes it was a huge chunk of my weekly budget and no I can’t afford to get anything else done for a month or two.  But at least I can both pay my health insurance premiums and cover the gap so that I am not writhing in pain for the next however long, chewing through pain killers which will eventually send me into kidney failure.

In this election year, I really hope something is done to make dental care accessible to all.  So that people don’t have to put up with excruciating pain and so that a person’s socio-economic status can’t be judged by decay in their mouth.  Surely, in a country as rich as Australia, being able to afford a trip to the dentist is a basic human right.

 

Something to chew on…

Born to Run (not really…)

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I’ve never been a huge fan of exercising for pleasure.  Yes, I’ve been a gym member and I’ve done the hard yards to keep my weight down (well, actually, so I could eat more cake).  I have enjoyed the odd boxing class from time to time and for a while there I followed Cindy Crawford’s exercise DVD (guess how old I am??)

Running has never been something I was interested in.  It seemed pointless to me.  I’m a fairly well endowed sort of lass so any form of exercise requires at least two sports bras (forgive me) so why would I want do something that results in some fairly serious bounce?  But then one day an email came around at work asking for participants in the Blackmores Bridge Run.  It was a 9km run for charity and I decided to go for it.  I had three months to train so I hired a treadmill and got going.  I got up at 6am every morning whilst the children were sleeping and began by walking briskly, which lead to a slow jog, which lead to fully fledged running.  On the weekends, I started doing the Bay Run, which is about 7km.  That last stretch over Iron Cove Bridge was my nemesis.  I would look down the whole way, determined not to focus on the end of the bridge which seemed so far away.  Within three months I could run the whole way.  Who had I become?

On race day I was so nervous but I strapped on my iPod and off I went.  It was quite a warm day and I struggled a bit with the quite heavy charity t-shirt I was wearing but I carried on regardless.  As I reached the half way mark I began to think I couldn’t make it.  I slowed to a walk and decided I would have to throw in the towel.  But I didn’t.  Once I made to the top of the hill I got my second wind, and inspired by the 9 year olds who were sprinting past me I started running again and ran all the way to the finish line.  9 kilometres in 1 hour and 13 minutes!  For a beginner I thought this was pretty damn good.  I was so proud of myself.  I then went home and slept for the next 6 hours straight.  It was 3 days before I could walk again without my muscles screaming and the blackened toenails stayed for weeks afterwards.  But I did it!!

I vowed to become a runner from then on but of course I didn’t, I made excuses and I slipped back into my slothful ways.

Recently however, I have become re-inspired.  I work in quite a stressful industry and a few weeks ago I left my previous job after months of bullying by a new manager.  The bullying had taken it’s toll and I have been feeling very low for a while now.  So I decided to start running again.  I’ve been reading all about the running adventures of Steph over at Mamamarmalade and this has got me all revved up and ready to go.

This week I started.  I got up at 6am and jumped on the treadmill.  I downloaded a beginner’s running app and it has a pleasant English girl urging me on which is rather a lot better than a real life personal trainer shouting at me.  I like it.

Now, I realize that these sorts of posts can be boring for some.  But stay with me dear readers, the very fact of my beginner-ness is sure to delight.. or at least bring an amused smile to one or two of you…!

Obsession.. Doggy Style

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When I moved into my new house, I made a concerted effort to get to know the neighbours.  To be honest, most of them made it pretty easy. I moved in just before Christmas and there were several cards in the letterbox welcoming us to the street and wishing us a happy festive season.

On one side I have a “hello, how are you” relationship with the neighbours.  They are a lot younger than I am, they both work (as do I) and I only see them from time to time.  Also, I did ask them if they could do something about their tom cat beating the living daylights out of my poor cat at every opportunity.  This may be dampened relations somewhat.  On the other side there is a retired couple.  They were very welcoming from the start.  They invited us in for afternoon tea and there was general chit chat over the fence whenever we were in our respective backyards.

Right away Betty*  was very friendly, particularly towards our dog.  She would say hi to the dog, pat her through the fence and occasionally throw over a bone.  The dog, needless to say, loved this extra attention.

One day I came home from work to see a brand new dog toy in the yard.  And then a couple of weeks later, another.  When I queried this, Betty said “oh I hope you don’t mind, I just thought Spot might like something to play with”.  I thanked her and insisted she needn’t bother.  I thought it was a kind of nice thing to do.  But then it started happening more frequently and it made me feel a bit uncomfortable.  Betty started commenting on how hard it was for the dog when we were at work and school respectively.  It felt a little judgey but I let it slide.

When we went away for a week, I asked Betty if she would feed the cat and she readily agreed.  She went on to say she wished she could take care of the dog for us but it was too much for her and her husband.  “Of course!” I exclaimed.  “I hadn’t even considered such an imposition”.  I had, but she’d made herself very clear on that front.

And so the little gifts for the dog kept arriving. One day I noticed a new blanket, then a new dog bed.  It was starting to get out of hand – at first it had felt like a neighbourly kindness but now it felt like she was suggesting our dog wasn’t being properly looked after.  Once, when I was at home sick I watched her climb over the fence into my backyard with yet another toy for the dog.  When I went outside to ask what she was doing she claimed to be deeply embarrassed, that she never usually did that, that she just wanted to bring a toy that her dogs didn’t want.  Oh, that’s right.  I forgot to mention.  She has TWO dogs of her own. Every time she brings something over she says her dogs didn’t want it.  She also has a husband, two grown up children and four grandchildren.  So she isn’t lonely or isolated.

From time to time I would come home and see the dog’s bedding hanging on her line.  I was going to say something, this felt like boundaries were being blurred, but I figured she thought she was helping and I didn’t want to cause any issues.  She’s our neighbour after all.  So I simply thanked her

But things started to turn slightly sinister about 3 weeks ago.  I was admonishing the dog for taking my pegs, yet again, when suddenly Betty appeared at the fence and said “hello Alice” in a low and menacing tone.  As though she’d caught me beating my kids or something.   (I should mention here I wasn’t beating the dog either, simply yelling at her to “drop the pegs”).  I felt like she was going to report me to the RSPCA or something.

A week or so later when I was checking the doors at bedtime, I noticed the dog’s bedding strewn across the back porch.  And I couldn’t find the dog.  I glanced next door and the dog’s blanket was hanging on their line!!  It had been in the dog’s bed only an hour or so before.  When I mentioned this to my mother, expressing my increasing concern, she said that sometimes dogs pull their beds apart.  When I queried as to whether they then sometimes take their bedding and hang it on the neighbour’s line, she admitted no, they do not.  Clearly, my neighbour had stolen into my backyard under the cover of darkness and hastily taken the dog’s bedding.  So she could wash it!!!!  When we were home!!!!

And the most recent display of absolute madness?  She bailed up my very sensitive daughter when she came home from school and stated that we should probably give our dog away since we were struggling to look after her.  What bloody cheek!  My daughter was so upset, she rang me at work sobbing.

Admittedly, our dog is an idiot.  She regularly escapes despite the fact that I’ve nailed every bit of fence down with tent pegs, doubled up with chicken wire, sustained scratches the length of my arms just trying to close up every possible gap in the fence.  I’m going to change the dog’s name to Houdini.  But we love her.  Suggesting we get rid of her is like suggesting we get rid of a member of our family.  It is my firm belief that an animal is for life so I’m hardly going to give her away.

I think my neighbour must have some sort of mental illness.  She regularly lets herself into our yard, and has openly admitted to bringing her grandchildren over to see our dog, but never when we are home.  She no longer comes to the front door, she simply strolls into the yard when she thinks we are not here.

What to do?  I don’t want to start a big thing, I have no intention of moving and since she has told me they moved into their place in 1972, I don’t think she’s moving either.  I could padlock the gate but this impacts on my children.  So now what?  How can I tell my neighbour she’s way past crossing boundaries and well into crazy dog stalker obsessiveness territory?

*Not her real name.  Obviously.

Mother’s Day Stall

Every year, the school holds a mother’s day stall.  Parents donate items and volunteers get together to package and then sell the presents to the children.  Each present costs $5 each and they consist of several little items put together.  My kids have always loved these stalls although now my eldest is in high school, the responsibility for the mother’s day shopping falls to my youngest.  She loves this!

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The mother’s day stall is an extremely important event in the lives of children of single mothers.  Without it, my girls would not have the opportunity to purchase a gift for me, which they feel they have done all by themselves.  Yes, I can take them shopping for mother’s day and give them the money to pay for their purchases but it’s not the same, they want to do it in secret, they want the build up, they want to feel as though I’m not paying for my own gifts.

When I was pregnant with my eldest daughter, I secretly hoped she would be born on Mother’s Day, even though it would have meant she was almost 4 weeks early.  I woke up without the slightest pangs of labour on the day and I had to concede that she wasn’t coming any time soon.  But I hoped that my (now ex) husband would recognise the day anyway.  My baby boy had been stillborn almost a year earlier and I felt that I should be recognised as a mother.  He did not feel the same and the day passed as any other.

After I had children, every mother’s day whilst I was married was awful.  My ex husband felt that child rearing was simply something a woman should do and there should not be a special day to celebrate this.  He grudgingly bought  a gift from the children but we never went out, he refused to take me to dinner/lunch/breakfast and I was never allowed to sleep in.  “Why on earth is she divorced from this prince?” I hear you musing.  Why indeed.

For a couple of years after the divorce, my ex took the children shopping for gifts but this stopped abruptly one Christmas when they were only 4 and 7 and the kids were devastated, upset that they didn’t have a present for me.  I told them I would be so happy if they made a gift for me, as this is what I really wanted and as they dried their tears they set about making me all manner of wonderful drawings and little books from their craft sets.

Since then I’ve always made sure they had money to buy me gifts.  They get such a thrill out of giving, often waiting until others have opened theirs just to enjoy the enjoyment of the person receiving the gift.  This is why the mother’s day stall is so important and why I want to thank each and every person who has ever been involved in donating and volunteering to make this happen.  For every single mum out there who buys her own gifts and puts them under the tree at Christmas, who gives her children extra pocket money around her birthday and then takes the children to the shops, who says (and means) that a home made gift is so much better, the mother’s day stall makes the children we love so much, feel as though they can do something for their mum.

It isn’t about getting a gift, it’s about the children getting so much out of going “shopping”, of doing something independently for their mum and not feeling any different from the other kids.

Backing Music: A Little Ray of Sunshine  – Brian Cadd

Outfit:  Pink fluffy dressing gown

Smash Cake!

It is my humble opinion that The Woman’s Weekly Birthday Cake book is one of publishing’s greatest hits.  My brother’s and I spent a good deal of the 1970’s poring over this wonderful tome, choosing which themed cake we would have for our birthdays each year.

I’m very grateful to my mother for saving this book for many years, and handing it down to my daughters.  I love that they choose from the very same book that I did.  I’m no Nigella, but I have managed to produce some passable cakes over the years, with the help of a lot of butter cream icing and some artfully placed silver cachous.

My youngest daughter is particularly interested in baking.  She starts choosing her cake each year around the first of January.  Her birthday is in June.  But she goes over these pages again and again.  She is also obsessed with the television show Cake Boss and was very excited when we recently discovered a cake shop close by which supplies all the professional tools need to create a masterpiece.

Each year, my birthday falls around Easter time so it usually means my mother is around.  She helps the kids make me a birthday cake and each year, my youngest daughter has eschewed  the concept of “less is more” and produced an elaborately decorated masterpiece.  This year was no exception.

I came home from work to this…

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I took a mallet to it and revealed this…

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I then cut into it, and revealed this..

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Pretty impressive huh?  My 10 year old had apparently spent all day making a heart shaped, multi coloured cake which she then iced and covered in different coloured mini cupcakes, and she then concealed the lot under a large, chocolate dome (which she made herself).  It was a fantastic birthday cake and all the better because it was made with such love.

Wonder what I will get next year?

Backing music:  Isn’t She Lovely – Stevie Wonder

Gifted

When I was a kid, my mother used to keep all of her birthday and Christmas gifts in their packaging, and display them for a up to a week after the event.  She could always show anyone who visited her gifts and they always looked so pretty all lined up.  Unfortunately, due to my desire for instant gratification, I am unable to do this but now that I have Instagram, I can display my gifts prettily here.  As soon as they were photographed they were opened and I’ve begun to enjoy them.

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A gorgeous photo album, Thorntons chocolates (the best chocolates in my opinion) and drawer soaps to make your smalls smell sweet.  Gifts from my darling daughters.

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A terracotta pot full of lovely succulents.  A gift from a friend who knows I want to fill my garden with cuttings from friends.

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This little beauty opens up to reveal an actual cupcake inside.  Yum.

IMG_1182So many pretty things.

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Now I just need for the weather to cool down to proper Autumn temperatures so I can start wearing these lovelies.

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Oh, how I enjoy a gift card!

 

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A cute surprise from my little girl.

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Beautiful flowers make every birthday complete.

I feel incredibly blessed by all the love and gorgeous gifts I received for my birthday.  Thanks to all xxx

Happy Birthday to Me!

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This morning my daughter told me that her father (my ex husband) told her to remind me that I am another year older today.  That I’m 44.  That I am “getting old”.  To this I merely snorted.  Because I LOVE birthdays.  Love them!  I get excited when it’s coming, I tell anyone who will listen that it’s my birthday and I try and string it out for at least a week.

I made no secret about it at work, I told the shopkeeper at the local vintage shop this morning (to which she said “happy birthday” and gave me my purchase for half price) and I will be telling pretty much everyone I speak to throughout the day that today I am celebrating my birthday.

I care not a jot that I am another year older.  I embrace it.  I’m still here!

So far I’m loving being in my 40’s.  Lots of things have changed for me since hitting the big four oh.  I changed careers, I changed towns, I bought a house… it’s all been pretty good.  There have been some lows and some scary times but most of all there has been a big bright shining light at the end of every tunnel I’ve reluctantly entered and this is pretty good I think.

A couple of weeks ago I was awaiting biopsy results and thinking the worst (as you do).  Now I am thinking of all the possibilities that my 44th year can bring.  I am something of an optimist with a fairly large pinch of cynicism thrown in.  I can be a downer with the best of them.  The black dog has come knocking at my door, many more times than I care to remember but for the most part, I feel lucky to be alive.

I was inviting someone to come to my birthday dinner the other day and she asked if it was a significant birthday (ie turning 40.. at least I think she meant 40, perhaps she thought 50?  I’m pretty sure she didn’t mean 30).  And I said, no, not significant as such, I just want to celebrate my birthday.  Which I do.

So tonight I am headed out with friends from a long time ago and friends I didn’t even know on my birthday last year and I’m going to have a blast.  There will be wine, a pub meal and conversation.  This to me, is what a great birthday celebration is.

Wishing everyone born today a very happy birthday.  You’re in good company, if I do say so myself!

 

Backing music:  Happy Birthday – The Beatles

Nails:  OPI – You Only Live Twice