I had a good birthday.
After lunch—technically a Father’s Day lunch for my husband at his favorite Mexican restaurant—Janie, Watson and I went shoe shopping. I adopted three pairs: a pewter pair that almost makes up for the deplorable fact that Rieker stopped making those red and silver suede ones just when I need replacements, a black pair that Rieker can’t stop making because they are the shoe, and a pair that hugs my feet like lovely woven gloves.**
The only bad part is that I have to inter my old, worn-loved-and-abused-to-destruction favorites,*** but all birthdays have a touch of melancholy, right?
We spent the next hour looking at every single item in the accessory shop next door and saying no to Janie, which is good exercise and keeps me sharp for the pseudo-negotiation of bigger things she won’t be getting until she achieves financial and geographical independence. But I did spring for a set or two of earrings–on sale–and two hairbows for Sunny.^
Because every birthday should be about sharing stuff, even if that stuff is made of tiny earrings shaped like fast food. Right?
Tired and happy, we returned home and had lemonade and pie. Okay, the kids had lemonade in front of the tube, my husband had iced tea, Watson went downstairs to take care of Jada Mae Swissie Dog and I hid in the kitchen with my laptop and had pie—chocolate truffle pie—while thanking everyone who sent me birthday wishes.
So, so worth the slightly sticky keyboard. Because birthdays should be about friends and risking chocolate-coated, white-hot sugar death. Right?
And then . . . I napped.
It was a good, long, prodigious nap. There may have been dreams of swordfights with garlic breadsticks. This isn’t as weird as it sounds—partly because it’s my subconscious, and garlic breadstick swordfights aren’t nearly as odd as it gets in there—and mostly because when I woke up, the house smelled of roasted garlic, meatballs, pasta sauce, and toasted bread—Janie and Watson made me dinner for my birthday. It was amazing, and ended as all fabulous meals should, with a slab of my MIL’s famous Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting^^ and a quick change into elastic-waisted pants.
And then we had presents. Because birthdays should be—well, you know.
My kids gave me a hair dryer, which is exactly what I’d asked for, since I’ve been playing Russian Roulette with my old one for two weeks—sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, sometimes it waits until my hair is half-dry and at even funnier angles than usual. This new one is bright, shiny, and aggressively magenta—if it were shoes, it would be clogs (see**)—but it works, it has a retractable cord, and it’s quiet. I spent some quality time with it this morning and I think we’ll get along just fine.
My husband gave me Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows on DVD, which I’m still loudly kicking myself for missing in the theater every time I’m reminded of it.^^^ He apparently bought it the day it came out in an effort to stop the kicking, or at least the loud, and has been living in fear that I’d buy it for myself, which I’ve only done . . . a couple times, and usually, in my defense, books. So I want at least partial credit for my restraint.°
But the Gift of the Day award—don’t tell the kids—goes to my MIL, who gave me something I’d stared at for a solid twenty minutes at the Art Fair last month before tearing myself away with thoughts of my Discover Card bill:
His name is Blaug. Isn’t he brilliant?
It was a very good birthday—because birthdays should be shared with the people who know you best and love you anyway. Right?
*Thanks so very much, Siobhan. You’ll be delighted to know that I’ve marked your birthday on my calendar, too. In red.
**I’m so disappointed that clogs and I don’t get along. I hated the pointy shoe trend, because I do not have naturally streamlined toes and do not feel the need to cripple myself for fashion, but the overly-rounded backlash currently in effect makes me feel like I’m a clown dressing as a duck in an effort to look like a clown duck in my early hipster twenties, which wouldn’t have been a good look for me when I was in my twenties and is exponentially bad now. Especially in that pair that looked like someone had cracked a blood-red pearlized bowling ball in half and shellacked it. There are some shoes so fundamentally ugly, you have to try them on, just once.
***Sing it with me: The Ciiiiiiiircle of Liiiiiiiife . . . .
^Who told me I was the Best Mom Ever and promptly clipped them to the head of her stuffed duck, whom she had dressed in a play jumper originally owned by an entirely different species of doll. In retrospect, the day had an odd, secondary duck theme to it . . .
^^I still can’t believe I rated this cake. I’m sure she also made it for my husband, but I don’t care because it’s that good.
^^^According to certain members of my family who have started to join in chorus as I whine, I’m reminded of this a lot.
° While duly giving credit for the distractions offered by television—more specifically, the second season of BBC Sherlock (nabbed it) and the fourth season of Leverage (pre-ordered). But it could have easily gone the other way.