On April 11th last year, my birthday, Teenage Son set up a WordPress blog for me. That was his gift. It took a full six weeks to summon the courage to write My First Post but, from the instant I hit that Publish button, I was completely hooked.
My birthday and bloggy-versary was perfect. I walked the dog through the murky rising mist and then came home and threw the photos I took up on the blog. I had promised myself a day off but I could think of nothing I wanted to do more than show you how green my morning was.
The sun appeared so the Small Girl and I had lunch in the garden at her miniature picnic table and then snuggled together in a deck chair to read a chapter of Little House In The Prairie.
After that, we sat quietly a while and listened to the bees arriving.
Middle Girl insisted that we squeeze an episode of The Gilmore Girls into our afternoon and I didn’t object.
I made pizza, our official food of birthdays.
Teenage Daughter made my birthday cake. The recipe for Rachel Allen’s blueberry baked cheesecake is here. At my request, the blueberries were replaced with brandy-soaked sultanas and some homemade mixed peel which the kids detest. It turned out just like the cassata cheesecake I remember from Italy. Scrumptious. The kids still didn’t like the peel so…more for me!
There was a lovely bundle of perfect presents.
And then, we danced. Well, Small Girl and I danced while Husband made the tea.
D’you know what? Cyndi Lauper should be on prescription.
Another chapter of Little House (she loves it!).
Then bedtime for Smallest.
Later, we watched Alan Bennett’s The Old Lady And The Van. I read the book years ago and would have killed to have seen the play. Teenage Son was adamantly against my movie choice but I reminded him of how often I’ve endured Star Wars and he settled down. If you haven’t seen it yet, I urge you to watch it soon. There is a nice review here with the story behind the film.
The combination of Alan Bennett’s exquisite writing with Maggie Smith’s extraordinary talent is heart-melting. The very last scene might be my favourite closing scene ever.
There’s a voiceover, towards the end where Alan Bennett says,
‘You don’t put yourself into what you write, you find yourself there.’
That’s it, really. That’s what this blog has done, and continues to do, for me. I’ve typed up a card, to remind myself.
I have found joy and solace here. I have laughed and cried at this desk. I have discovered a portal to a world populated by decent, kind people. I have found inspiration, encouragement and friendship. Thank YOU, from the bottom of my heart, for finding me.