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Well look at me blogging all the time. This is good form! I’m trying to encourage myself to write more in some form or another. Don’t get too used to it though…who knows how long this will last?

The Queen and I celebrated our birthdays last Saturday. I don’t know what Liz did for hers, but I ate lots. It started off with presents! Yay I love presents. Mum bought me these amazing cushions that I had been coveting at a homewares shop weeks earlier – presents are almost always great, but are especially the best when people have been paying attention and surprise you with things you’ve mentioned you like but wouldn’t buy yourself. Anyway these cushions are really dense and perfect for sitting up and reading in bed with, but also super textured and just fantastic. They go perfectly well with my bluey/aqua bedspread and the bedhead I made for myself out of our spare foam mattress and an old grey velvet curtain. So now my bed looks fancy.

She also gave me some wonderful Smitten merino stuff – a stripey scarf and some leggings. I will probably blog about merino clothing soon because I am becoming obsessed by it. But anyway, these are also things I have been thinking I’d buy sometime but never had the disposable income for them, so I was extra happy to get them.

She also made pancakes! The best.

I was still not well, having been sick all week with general aches and pains and headaches and fatigue and general unpleasant cold symptoms. I had suspected it might have been contracted from the church playgroup mum and I had volunteered at the week before, but it turns out my uncle got sick as well and he hadn’t been at the playgroup (but had been with us a few days before), so we must have all gotten it somewhere on our travels. Anyway, despite this I put on a dress and my new warm leggings and some make up so that I felt good. I also took a cold and flu tablet, that probably helped.

I chatted to dad and the family on Whatsapp, answered lots of happy birthday wishes on Facebook and then we headed out to Sassafras, about an hour away from our house. The weather was gloriously bright and pleasant, and it was restoring to see the Tamar river and the rolling hills and all the sheep and cows just fully enjoying their ovine and bovineness in the autumn sun.

Side note: on that drive north west you also cross the Rubicon River and every single time I say to myself “I’m crossing the Rubicon” but then you cross it again on the way back so it’s not really a point of no return. At least I have stopped myself saying it aloud every time we drive across it.

We’d been wanting to go to the Tasmanian Food and Wine Conservatory for ages, and it didn’t disappoint, though it did take me me a little while to equalise. The room was packed and it was very warm, and the noise was really getting to me. But we were seated behind a beautiful old piano and sort of under a pot plant and I got used to the room after a while.

I had tasty okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake) with pork belly for mains, and every mouthful was just right in terms of texture and flavour. Then white chocolate and peanut butter cheesecake for dessert. Yes! I finally had some cheesecake. In a glass. And it was superb. If there is anything peanut-butter-and-chocolate related on a dessert menu I will almost always go for it. We also had chilli ginger beer, which offset the richness of the food very nicely (I took a pic to remember the brand).

Then we headed towards Latrobe to visit Reliquaire, because it’s a shop that’s always a pleasure to wander around. Well I thought we were heading for Latrobe. Turns out I should have put on the GPS because I drove 10 minutes in the wrong direction. Not to worry! We were soon on the right track again. Did I mention my sense of direction is atrocious?

I was starting to feel quite off by this point, but we pressed on and I bought myself this mug as a self-birthday present. They had a whole range of things, big bowls, tiny bowls, jugs, egg cups, and all with different faces (I also think this bowl is super cute). But I liked this cheerful mug most and I have used it several times a day since. I think it’s worth having things around that just make you smile.

Then we headed for home, where we had a chilled out night planned. There were flowers from G on the doorstep! B dropped in with some dark chocolate! And we had some delicious cheese and Moet that the Barrys had dropped off the night before! So much good stuff. We rented the recent adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express (enjoyable, very nice to look at, fun to see all those great actors together, not especially challenging (but then for such an oft-told mystery, it’s not really a mystery anymore, is it?)), and snuggled in for the night.

So that was my birthday! Having started the week feeling terrible and very low, it was good to have so much fun stuff to do, so many nice messages from friends, so much delicious food. While I’m still not 100%, having my mental state be a bit more balanced is helping me to think clearly and not be so despairing about life. There’s so much good stuff in it!