Sunday, March 23, 2008

Birthday Bounty

An inexpensive oil burner I bought for myself. The blue background is a living room test colour on carboard!

I've been meaning to write and share photos of my birthday presents with everyone but the week zipped by with no time to post.

My birthday was wonderful overall, but the day itself was a little lonely. I stayed home with a migraine and my grandmother (out east) ended up in the hospital that day with a heart attack. My entire family is on the east coast, so I didn't have any of my own kin to share my birthday with and the only person who phoned me was my Mom! I did get birthday cards, but it was a lonely day so far away from everyone, especially during a family crisis. I felt like I should be there, where I belong. But I have lived away for 20 years now. It never gets any easier. All the people I love, my very own people, are 2000 miles away, so there are times when it gets very, very lonely.

Luckily David and his family are so kind and loving to me. His Mom hosted a birthday weekend for me at her house and the three of us ate home-made chocolate cake and had fun. His darling Grandma sent me a card, and his brother and sister-in-law had us over for supper last night for a belated birthday (with another cake!). All-in-all it was a wonderful two-week birthday bash. David made it special with a beautiful gift and card and flowers, so I am very thankful and feel very loved. It is still hard having none of my own family here, and harder every year I get older for some reason. But I'm so thankful for all I have, and for the friends who wished me well too!

David bought me a beautiful handbag that I've been coveting. I never buy expensive purses, but this one stole my heart and instead of going for a fancy dinner and blowing two hundred bucks and then buying a big present, we pooled the money and I got a crazy expensive Michael Kors bag from Holt Renfrew! I adore it. It's the nicest bag I've ever owned and I don't think I'll ever get tired of carrying it. I'm a practical girl and not one of those gals who ever indulges a lust for expensive shoes and handbags. I love them all, but I'm sensible and can't bring myself to spend over $200 for much of anything (except house stuff....) anymore. So I adore my posh new bag. Who knew that burnt orange goes with everything, especially all the white and khaki and blue and beige I wear in summer!

My Mom sent a beautiful card and the always-lovely gift of money. I decided to spend some of it on a set of Spring coffee mugs and a serving bowl from Portmeirion. I didn't buy the sugar and creamer because I already have two sets! The mugs are so pretty and happy and spring-like and I don't have matching mugs for serving coffee after dinner. I thought these would work with my inexpensive blue and white dinnerware until I eventually buy a set of matching dishes! Here's a photo of two of the mugs. The rest of the set (8 mugs and serving bowl) is on order. I heart them!

I also got a Lululemon gift certificate from David's mum, plus a beautiful Floragold depression glass fluted serving bowl. I collect this Floragold pattern and already have several pieces (I'll have to show you some time). The bowl is so pretty I hate to put it away in the cabinet.

From David's brother and sister-in-law I got a sweet cat card and a gift certificate to Pottery Barn. I can't wait to go shopping! Hmmm...maybe this afternoon instead of going on the treadmill...

But the real highlight of the week was my auction find! While visiting David's mum in the country, we attended an estate sale auction and I saw this amazing solid oak library table. I thought it would make an awesome desk for our (as yet unorganized) office. But then I decided it was too impractical (no keyboard tray) and decided not to bid. However, when it came up at the sale, it almost went to a single final bidder for $150! Not wanting this person to get my desk for such a deal, I bid against him and ended up the proud owner of a library table for $300! Talk about a steal! Getting it home was an ordeal, but luckily David and I had driven the truck to his mum's in case we found something at auction. We have a carpenter in the family and I hope to requisition him to rebuild the drawers with a keyboard tray for me! Thrilled!
All in all, an amazing birthday. And I am happy to report, my grandmother is still in hospital but seems to be on the mend. She will be 82 in August and is an amazing lady who raised 5 kids and cared for elderly parents, a sick husband for 15 years, and milked many cows and hung out many loads of laundry in her day. She is a trooper and yet seems to be enjoying the rest in hospital and all the attention. I can't wait to see her in May and hope she gets out of the woods soon...xo


  1. Wow, you got quite a haul for your birthday! You sound just like me on your sensible approach to birthdays. I used to think nothing of spending money on posh things, back in the day when my parents gave me a Nordstrom card (in high school!). But, ever since being an adult, the house is the only thing I have really splurged on. And when I do splurge (even on the house), we do it in lieu of the expensive dinners and such.

    I must say, though, that the bag was a worthwhile purchase! So fun to have something you LOVE, especially a purse that you will carry all the time. It is a beauty!

    I love all your other goodies too!

    Sorry to hear about your grandma, but glad that she is on the mend.

    Your birthday festivities and cakes sound lovely, in spite of your loneliness for your family. At least you have people you love around you.

    Our Easter festivities are over now and I am sitting in that toile chair in my kitchen with my new laptop. Speaking of splurges, I finally got my own laptop! It is wonderful to be able to work wherever I want to.

    Happy Spring, Terri!

    Good chatting with you!


  2. Hi Terri!
    HAPPY BIRTHDAY and Happy Easter!!

    Wow sounds like you have had a wonderful birthday albeit being far away from your family!

    I do know what you mean though, because as the years go by I also feel that I want to be closer to my family. Are you guys staying over there or are you thinking of moving over to where your parents live?

    What a lovely bag! And ofcourse you should buy the bag!

    I'm like you though, I rarely buy expensive stuff, heh I'm not a good shopper :P

    I like your mugs! Yeah, you will have to show us your set sometime!

    Good to hear that your grandma is getting better!

    Have a wonderful monday!


  3. Thank you for the Easter greetings, Terri...

    What wonderful birthday gifts you've shared. That bag is terrific and a true investment. (You do have your leather cleaner at the ready?)

    The mugs are so cheerful and springy and nothing makes you put the dish back in the cupboard unless you want to. And when you want it out again...out it comes! Nothing to it! :>

    I was nodding my head reading about how your grandmother has responded to the attention in the hospital. It must be sweet relief to have someone come alongside when she is so weary and be helpful and attentive. I hope that she recovers quickly and is back to feeling herself very soon and able to go forward on her own terms. God love her!

    And you...wish that there would soon be some relief for those migraines. I am purposely not calling them "yours."

    Take good care of yourself...classes still dull as toast?

  4. What a birthday, both sweet and bitter. I am glad to hear that your grandma is getting better. It is terrible to far away when things like that happens.
    I have an English friend who has lived here for 35 years and she says she get more and more "homesick" for every year. So I do not think there is any cure for your feelings. But David and his family seems to be a great support.
    I must admit that I love handbags... and especially classic ones... I do not spend a lot of many on myself expect for handbags. But I guess I must have some weaknesses. I adore your bag too! And the lovely china from Portmeiron.
    love Poppins

  5. What a fantastic birthday - although I can certainly understand your feelings about being away from loved ones. I feel it acutely when we are overseas. I love your new purse. I feel the same purses and shoes but just can't spend ridiculous amounts on either. So glad you got to splurge! The library table is really something special. I'm sorry your grandmother is still in the hospital but so happy to hear she's on the mend. I'll be thinking of her and you in the coming days. Take care, Terri!

  6. I love those spring cups--they are beautiful and so "happy". The purse will probably last forever!!

    Glad you could celebrate with some of your loved ones and hope your grammie is doing better!

  7. Anonymous10:53 pm

    Sounds like you had a nice B-Day. Happy belated!

  8. What a wonderful birthday you had Terri! I know that the distance from you family must seem twice as far on special days and even more so during a crisis. I do hope your grandmother is better soon:)

    On another note, that purse is HOT!! I love it! There is a beautiful black trench coat that lululemon made this year. It's one of my favourite pieces of clothing I own. I think it's still available on their website. It would look great with that purse during the fall!! Just a thought. I'm a bit of a shopaholic in case you haven't guessed ;)

  9. hello, what a lovely bag you've got there! you lucky one... I also am like you, never spending so much on things for myself, but for my house I just buy and buy.
    sorry to hear about your grandma, hopefully she is beter soon.

    enjoy your lovely things and have a good week!


  10. Boy, did you do well!! I love all of your lovely gifts, but I am sorry you couldn't be with your N.B. family on your birthday. I know how much I miss my family at holiday time, so I share your pangs...

    I am happy to hear your grandmother is doing better. I am sure you will have a great visit with her when you get down this way. May is not long now...!!

    Take care Terri!

  11. Happy Birthday! It sounds like a wonderful birthday. I feel like my birthdays are lower and lower key the more birthdays I have (but perhaps that is a function of having to put so much energy into the kids birthdays), so it is nice to read about you having such a special day!

  12. Just tiptoeing through...

    Hope that your weekend is delightful in every way, Terri.

  13. What a lucky gal- I love your bag!

  14. Belated Happy Bday Terri!

    And sending wishes for your grandma for speedy recovery..