Last Wednesday was my birthday. Before you consider me very tardy in holding this post off until now, I would like to note that my birthday celebrations have spanned a full week. They started last Sunday evening with my family, continued on Wednesday itself with Mr Bite, and concluded last night with my new family-in-law and a shared birthday evening with my niece, who turns 7 in a week.
|New solar lanterns|
I am not actually a big fan of birthdays (or at least not my own birthday), but this isn't really to do with getting older. Getting older has treated me well thus far - I hit 29 this year and I am far more content at 29 than I was at 19 or even at 9. Whether the same will be true at 39 I can't say, but for now the years seem to be getting better rather than the reverse. In saying that, it is very odd to be 29, when in my mind I only hit 20 about a week ago.
My birthday reluctance is more around the focus on me. I don't much like being the centre of attention, and I feel a certain amount of obligation when an event is held in my name, wanting to make sure that everyone has a good time. Simultaneously, I really appreciate the effort people go to when they think of me on my birthday, and I want to convey that to them. It can all feel a bit hard!
This year, I was lucky enough to have three sets of lovely celebrations, all on my sort of scale. Dinner with my family fell on an early summer's day, allowing us to sit on the deck out the back of my parent's house. I love the deck at the back of my parent's house.
My Mum made a selection of vegetarian dishes, including tofu and grilled vegetable kebabs...
...and there were three tiers of vegan cupcakes (vanilla and chocolate). I enjoyed them across the week and can attest that both flavours were delicious.
On Wednesday itself, Mr Bite and I repeated our celebrations from last year and took Grill'd burgers to the beach.
Last night, we had salad and pizza in a local park with Mr Bite's family, including his mother's Labrador dog.
There was plenty of fun for children, dogs and adults alike, including a water playground in which three children got very wet and my husband got more than a little splashed.
Across these celebrations, I also received a rather large selection of presents - all perfectly chosen and all things I am delighted to start using, playing with, reading or eating.
In the mix are a light box and polarising lens cover for my camera, which I expect to have great fun experimenting with (and, indeed, have already started playing with).
There are books and chocolate in great supply, including dairy free dark chocolate from Koko Black, a selection of Terry's dark chocolates I hadn't previously seen, fiction and non-fiction reads, a book on the history of tea (and how to make different herbal teas), and The Little House Cookbook.
I discovered The Little House Cookbook on Book Depository a month or so ago and knew I had to have it. Those of you who love the Laura Ingalls Wilder books may understand my enthusiasm. I can now not only read about the history of food and recipes across Laura's childhood, but also make some of the more memorable dishes that featured in her books.
To round things out, I am the proud new owner of solar lanterns (also pictured in the top photo), some kitchen gadgets, body shop items, a water bottle that lies flat when empty, an indoor-friendly plant for one of my work offices, and Bunnings vouchers to keep my home plants in happy supply.
I feel very lucky.
How do you like to celebrate your birthdays?