Yesterday was Jason’s birthday.
Mostly I dread it, due to the fact that he really wants a Ferrari, and I can never afford one, and so soon after Christmas I have usually used up all my presents that aren’t a Ferrari idea. It strains my every sinew to come up with acceptable non-sports car objects.
This year however, was slightly easier. I seem to have stumbled across a fair few things that had escaped my notice over the Christmas period, and managed a reasonable haul to offer up. It also helps that the children have their own, very firm ideas of what they want to give him, and the means with which to get these things, so I do not have to fret myself into a turmoil over their gifts any more. I am also glad to say we are past the stage of: ‘Dad would really, really like a Barbie Bowling Alley for his birthday,’ where I would have to cruelly squash their dreams every year.
It was a quiet day, which he likes. He is not a great one for fuss and nonsense, unlike the rest of us, who will get hideously over excited about things like the arrival in the house of a new type of cheese. He is the quiet one of the family. He is the private one, the one who doesn’t do drama.
Every now and again, to give him his due, he will go strangely bonkers and randomly take up pipe smoking, or pack us all in the car at ten o’clock at night to go away to a secret location for a weekend, or suddenly appear with delightful surprises. He likes to keep us on our toes, and he has an extreme tolerance for eccentricity, which is good or he would be very, very stressed, instead of just slightly stressed by us all.
So the day was relaxed, as befits the birthday boy and his wishes. We went out for lunch at one of our favourite local cafes’. We were going to go out for dinner, but we were too full, so I created a nourishing, and on the fly, Thai spiced vegetable and noodle broth as a nod to health for our dinner. Then I baked him Liberty London Girl’s pavlova from Friends, Food, Family which was what he requested instead of a birthday cake. I also baked Edd Kimber’s brownies from The Boy Who Bakes, recipe book which I picked up on Friday for the princely sum of £1. It was worth it for the brownie recipe alone. I do like testing new brownie recipes. They were, as he specifies, very fudgey indeed.
We spent the evening playing cards and getting increasingly sugared up before packing the children off to bed and spending the rest of the evening watching mindless telly. We don’t do it very often, so it was exactly right.
It was a very happy birthday.