Today is my birthday. (3rd April as I've just seen the time/day it is now!)
Rhiannon sent me an animated e-card showing a birthday cake running away from the masses of candles that should be on it. It made me fall about laughing, but I try not to think of the numbers nowadays. They are heading in the wrong direction.
Tim gave me some money last week and suggested I buy my own gift - he does this as it's easier for both of us: I get what I really want and like, and he doesn't have to trouble himself.
As you can see, birthdays are not celebrated in this household. Unless it's Rhiannon's!
It shouldn't bother me as I'm used to it. And for most of the day it really didn't. I woke up early and logged into Facebook where the first of dozens and dozens of lovely birthday greetings appeared. They were very touching and much appreciated.
Rhiannon was on a sleepover so there was no hug from her. Tim got up and forgot to even wish me happy birthday. I kept my counsel.
We collected Rhiannon, came home and I took Kita out for her morning in the spring sunshine. It was gorgeous and lifted my spirits immensely. Not far from home, a stunningly beautiful red squirrel sat on the railings by the bridge while it's mate sat in a nearby tree. They were within touching distance and just sat there, looking warily at the dog who was behaving remarkably well. I completely forgot that my iPhone has a camera on it so the image will remain in my memory rather than in the computer's.
Wild flowers carpet the ground in shades of blue, pink and white in a small patch of woodland next to the lake. The trees are showing a soft haze of life as the buds begin to swell and burst. Mirror-calm, the water only rippled in time with a couple of mallard pairs. Further on, a large heron majestically took off and flew low over the water. Nobody else was around. Heaven.
Back home, reality hit. Tim had the day off so I hoped we might go out and 'do something'. My mistake. I should have planned it myself rather than expect others to step up to the mark. One day I will learn.
Tim and Rhiannon are going to Florida tomorrow. I'm staying behind. I have no wish to go to Disney and the pets need looking after. With Rhiannon deathly tired after her sleepover and Tim in packing mode ready for an extremely early start tomorrow the day was boring as hell.
By the time the packing was finished it was 3pm so no point in going anywhere then. If I'd thought sensibly about it, I'd have taken myself off for the day but as I am going to be on my own for the next couple of weeks I thought I'd better stay with my family. More fool me for being a sulky martyr! Not my default setting, that's for sure!
Reading the Facebook greetings later on, I did get a little morose for a while. No, I hadn't been 'spoilt rotten' by my husband and daughter; no, I didn't have a 'fabulous day', neither did I get 'loads of pressies'.
Yesterday I used Tim's money to buy myself to a pair of earrings I've been hankering after and an embarrassingly huge amount of pampering goodies. So at least I had something to unwrap today.
When Rhiannon got home she shot upstairs and wrapped up a pair of her own earrings for me. She knew how much I loved them and found them too heavy for her. It truly is the little things that make it worthwhile.
The adage "It's the thought that counts" is so, so true. A little thoughtfulness from people more than makes up for the rest of the 'let's pretend it's not happening' attitude.
I shall remember to sort it ALL out myself next year. It seems I need to write out a list of instructions or wishes beforehand in order to get any thought at all.
For what it's worth, I will thoroughly enjoy the utter peace, quiet and freedom to do what the hell I want until they return from the States.
And I will take many, many baths with the bubble bath overstock!