I wasn't actually looking forward to today's birthday - my 43rd. I feel much better about it after getting my eyelashes and eyebrows tinted and putting a colour in my hair to cover the greys (you know - just those seven that have been getting me down). I usually (as my mother loves to mention every year) manage to spin my birthday out to encompass as many outings and treats as possible - a family get-together, morning tea with my girlfriends, a solo shopping trip or a massage. But this year... I just couldn't get enthusiastic about it. However, the day dawned (early, as it does with a breastfeeding toddler and a five year old who hates to sleep in and miss anything) and it was a beautiful spring day. After a couple of hours of secret present wrapping and card making, I was presented with some lovely clothes and truly touching works of art and kind words in shaky writing. Then we watered the garden and I started to enjoy myself.
The highlight came when my family returned from shopping with a huge bunch of flowers (chosen by E aged 5) and two helium balloons (G aged 2 chose one with ducks which says "Baby girl"). E handed me a soft parcel wrapped in tissue paper and said with great excitement "Happy Birthday Mummy. It's a dress". My girl had taken her Daddy shopping to buy me a dress and chose one she thought I would like because "it is cream and that's your favourite colour, it has flowers and lots of other colours, it has frills on the sleeves and a sash AND a petticoat!". What could a mother say but "It's beautiful Darling. I love it!". So I wore it out for my date this afternoon with her father with the memory of her shining face still with me. The nice thing was.....the girl in the icecream shop who served me a gelato (two scoops - blood orange and papaya) said "I love your dress!".