TANTI AUGURI DI BUON COMPLEANNO

On Monday I joined a club. I was a bit reluctant about this club for a while, but I’m over it now and a fully-fledged member of the Fabulous Forties. I mean, it was automatic, free membership on my birthday. And apparently there’s not much I can do to get out of this club – the only way out is less appealing than joining.
Limonata by the beach.

Edible herb bouquet from a friend.

An acquaintance I saw on the day welcomed me to the club with open arms, saying it was a terrific time of life. She’s beautiful and really hitting her stride professionally, so I decided to take her at her word. And since I keep getting told I don’t look old enough to have two strapping teenage sons, I figure I’ve got good genetics up my sleeve for a while yet (thanks, Sausage).
I was blessed to be able to celebrate membership to the Fabulous Forties over several days, starting with lunch at a restaurant near the beach with some good friends. Fish and chips by the seashore; can’t go wrong with that! It was lovely to spend time with these wonderful women and chat about this thing called life. We laughed as we talked about getting older (and we hope, wiser), and encouraged the thirty-something there to hurry up and join the club. She didn’t look too keen, but we think she’ll like it when she does.
To celebrate the big day, I really wanted an Italian-themed party for family, and that’s exactly what I got, complete with wood-fired pizzas, antipasto and scrumptious Italian-pastries (no, I can’t claim credit for them). The pictures tell the story, I think.
It was a fantastic night shared with two extra-special guests – Sausage and Sweet Sis, who flew over from Sydney. Italian cafe music, good food, good conversation and a bit of wine…perfetto! I am so thankful to all those who helped make the night just what I had hoped for, especially my Blue Eyes, who slaved over the wood fire for ages and ate after everyone else.

On the actual day marking admittance to the club, I worked a few hours and then came home to a beautifully prepared dinner of marinated lamb on the BBQ and salad courtesy of Bear and Blue Eyes and a cheesecake mostly prepared by Miss Attitude (when she was paying attention). Simple, tasty, benissimo.

Pottering around outside while they cooked, I watched the sunset and found new dwarf sunflowers adding colour to sandy vegetable bed (still too hot to plant). I played with my tripod (a family gift I was blessed to receive), flicked through my new books and just enjoyed the time I had to just be me. Sausage and I tried out a foot bath I’d been given and played beauty school for a while. A pedicure here, foot massage there, a bit of purple (!) nail polish and some soothing cream. Lovely.

So, that’s it. I feel loved, pretty spoilt and … you know what, I feel fabulous! Thank you to all who helped me feel that – you know I love you too.

Here’s a truly sweet message from an old, far-away friend that touched my heart – I think those of you who are already in the club will understand.

A message of special blessing for you on this special birthday. For me it was like looking back over 40 years of” roaming in the desert” and now that I am enjoying Canaan – you never want to go back there. May it be your experience as well and may you experience all the joy your heart can hold. You deserve it. Lots of love from across the continent.