Happy Birthday to Me

We celebrated my birthday two days ago with a beautiful array of activities and interactions with friends and family.

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The day began with a beautiful 3 a.m. text  message greeting that made my heart sing, accompanied by a funny, musical phone message so garbled that I could barely hear it, because of the bad connection, but it still made me smile.   Things just kept getting better and better throughout the day. Phone calls….gifts….beautiful gestures made by various people.  I truly felt loved.

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John had arranged a beautiful brunch cruise along the Willamette River aboard a yacht.  The weather was cold and overcast, but the sun broke out from time to time, making the trip absolutely perfect.  The yacht was three stories tall, and we periodically strolled from deck to deck, enjoying live jazz and beautiful scenery.

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Here is a little video of the cruise:

Ingrid , shown below with her glass of sparkling apply juice, was the star of the show when she sang happy birthday to me.

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I cried from the sweetness of this gesture, which was something that she cooked up herself.  As you can see, the crowd was also touched by this.    I love how she bends that note at the beginning of the song.  So cute!


John enjoyed the gorgeous scenery as much as I did.

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The food was exquisite, and we had delicious, fresh mimosas to go with.

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The whole trip lasted around 2.5 hours.  It was peaceful, beautiful, and much appreciated by this birthday girl….and by a little piggy (shown below).

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Afterward, we attended an awesome art show, which I found wholly inspiring.  Then, we went to my daughter’s house for a traditional dinner.  She baked the most delicious coconut cake for me, which Ingrid decorated with pretty gold candles.

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I felt truly blessed this year….truly loved and deeply happy, knowing that those who took the time out of their lives to acknowledge my birth really love me.  Sometimes, I feel like the luckiest woman alive.   This was one of those perfect birthdays that I will never forget.  Many thanks to my family and to my friends who made it all possible.

Happy Birthday to my Precious Daughter, Sarah.


I went to my daughter’s house this evening for what her 5 year old daughter termed a “veggie sushi extravaganza.”  My son-in-law, his brother and  his girlfriend and another friend whipped up a ton of sushi, sashimi and tempura for dinner tonight.  It was a casual affair with friends and family and kids, and we had a delightful time.  The food was delicious!

On this day, 37 years ago, I almost named my daughter  after this song:

However, on the afternoon that I went into labor I played a record of Lauren Bacall reading a story called, “The Clock with 13 Faces.”  And when she introduced the main character by saying, “….and her name was Sarahlinda!” in that deep, husky Lauren Bacall voice, I knew that this was to be my baby’s name.

Last night, Sarah came to my house and the two of us  spoke long into the night.  We talked about our family dynamic and its history. We spoke about the future, and our plans to move forward through life and to continue on the path we are currently on, a simple, happy one. Sarah feels the same as I do about letting go of negative people and influences,  and about cleaving to that which is good in life…the positive.  Our  talk was pithy, and  probably the best one we have ever had, and I came away from it knowing that what I have with this remarkable young woman is what many parents could only hope for.

She told me that she was grateful to have received a nice card from her father with happy birthday wishes, and I noted  how little it takes to make her happy.  Her dad and I  could not have asked for a better daughter.  She is a true gift and always was.  Never caused anyone an ounce of trouble.

Since it is her birthday, I will exercise a mother’s right to brag…..My daughter  is a perfectly beautiful spirit residing in a truly  sane existence.    With her, there is never any drama.  Never any meanness.  Never an unkind word…but she isn’t a pushover by any stretch of the imagination.  She is strong.  Smart.  Funny.  A GREAT mother.  Productive. Creative. Accomplished .  She isn’t the type to pit one person against the other, and she is honest.  She isn’t boastful and has nothing to prove to anyone.


Her  quiet, unassuming manner conveys that she is secure within herself.  She is never phoney, never pretentious and is comfortable in her own skin. Oh, and she is not in the least materialistic, and I am very proud of her for that.  In fact,  I am proud of her in every possible way.

It is an honor to be her mother.

Sarah is the voice of sanity.  She  is an inspiration to me.  She is an inspiration to a lot of people.  I am so grateful that she is a part of my life.

Happy birthday, Sarah.  I love you for a million new reasons every day.  I deeply appreciate you and thank you for being who you are.  You are the absolute best.





After midnight….


When the clock strikes 12 tonight, I will be entering a new decade.  Gifts began arriving two days ago.   Tonight, I am thinking of my mother, in labor, all those years ago.  She is a very sweet woman.  She always said it was a difficult labor, however, and  that the nurses popped popcorn in the lounge, and that she hated the smell of that.  I long to be with Mom tonight, miles and miles away from me, and Dad, too.  I wish I could celebrate this birthday with them.  I almost got to do it, but my school work prevented that.

I have plans for breakfast with a friend in the morning, then dinner with my daughter later and a “big surprise” after that….whatever that means, and my husband promises we will have yet another surprise when he returns on the 22nd, and another is winging its way to me as I write this.   Truth be told, I don’t feel much like celebrating.  I have a lot of work to do, both for grad school and for my job.  Birthdays are just another day of the week for me now.  The celebrations will be more for those people that love me, rather than for just me.  Next year, I am going to book a reservation at a yoga retreat.  I have grown to love my solitude.  The silence.  I like being alone.   I am happy.

Happy birthday to me.

My Birthday

Well, in 30 minutes, when the clock strikes midnight, November 15, 2012, it will be my birthday.  I will have a busy day ahead of me, and plans for the evening as well, and am looking forward to all of it.   I have already had an overwhelming amount of love directed my way by friends and family, as well as some very cool gifts, and would like to say thank you, early, to let all of you know how much I love and appreciate you.

Happy birthday to me!





Photo a Day – NOVEMBER


©Stacy Alexander – 2012