a love affair with micron
what I made last night

never too old

The summer is birthday season for us.  Only Jason's birthday is outside the birthday season.  And while we are not great at keeping mementos, scrapbooking, making quilts from all the children's old clothes we have always tried to create our own little rituals around birthdays.  In part this was originally to make birthdays about more than just presents and it seems to have worked because our eldest is more concerned that we will remember the birthday chair than with what he actually wants for his birthday (not overly helpful when I'm desperately trying to think what on earth to get for a nineteen year old boy!)


I was worried that this year Cain would be too old for all our family birthday traditions but a few days before his birthday he told me about how surprised he was when he discovered that his friends didn't grow up with a birthday chair or crown or sweets on their birthday mornings.  I was surprised to discover that he had thought that our birthday traditions were simply what everyone did, like a christmas tree at christmas.  But I also realised that he loves the traditions and would be gutted to wake up to no birthday chair (or throne) and crown.


so this year while we sat and made the decorations and wrapped presents I thought about how important such a simple ritual becomes in a family.  Jason and I used to stay up late after the children had gone to bed making all the preparations but as they have gotten older the children who haven't got a birthday stay up and help.  This week Cain (despite being 19) went to bed early and the rest of us stayed up, Annis made the crown and decorated the chair, Teague put all the sweets onto the tiered cake stand and we all helped with bunting, wrapping and card making.  


some ideas were less successful than others (these were made for Annis's birthday a couple of weeks ago).  It was suggested that these look a little like dead dolls hanging from the ceiling but that's the thing when you take time to make things, it doesn't really matter what they turn out like because they immediately have a story to them and I just know that these unusual hangings will come back out next year and we'll all laugh about the fact that they still look like dead dolls.  ( I would like to point out that the horrible light fitting is one we cannot remove without expensive help from an electrician so it stays and has things hanging from it, possibly drawing attention to it rather than distracting from it!).  In fact I'm quite tempted to leave our dead dolls up all year round, perhaps adding to them bit by bit...

So now the birthday season is over I think it might be time to go on some picnics, something we haven't done at all this year :o(  Do any of you lovely readers have any good suggestions for veggie picnic food.  One of our favourites is the cheesy jack recipe from the old Cranks cookery book (basically a savoury flapjack) and puff pastry swirls stuffed with pesto.  But I would welcome more ideas to ring the changes a little.