Jaqui's Daily Blog

What I Love About Birthday Messages

Young Sam is insistent that I need to know about the causes of the Great Fire of London in 1666.  It was all the baker’s fault.


I love the fact that when you are six, going on seven, your perception of times past is sketchy to say the least. Sam recounts the story of how St Paul’s Cathedral was burnt to the ground as if this all happened yesterday. He is as excited as a newshound, first on the scene of a major disaster and about to grab the headlines on tomorrow’s front page.


My Little Welsh Boys are skyping me, courtesy of their lovely mum, to wish me a Happy Birthday.  Sam sings with gusto, James is slightly distracted but hums along, somewhere in the background, while the Littlest One, Morgan, is too busy to sing, but drags his First Birthday balloons over to show me that they are still buoyant, nearly three weeks after his own big day.


The Baldwin Family ring and sing.  Great harmonies and even a piano accompaniment.  Most impressive.  The Youngest of the Darling Daughters says I need to be better by tomorrow when she is expecting me for a Birthday Meal Out. Jack and I talk about time management in connection with an exam he is sitting next week. I suspect that the somewhat woolly advice I am dispensing is best taken with a large pinch of salt but Jack is a clever lad who will have worked this out by now.  


The Middle of the Darling Daughters ‘phones and manages to carol the first line of "Happy Birthday to you" before suggesting I take the rest as read. Baby Faris is asleep or I am sure he would have joined in, chatty as he is.


The Eldest of the Darling Daughters rings.  She is pleased to hear that her presents have arrived. She has bought me Hilary Mantel’s “Bring Up The Bodies” which I have been longing to read ever since I finished “Wolf Hall.”  I am desperate to start reading it but my head still feels as if it is stuffed with cotton wool balls so I am forcing myself to wait until I can savour it properly. I am sure it will be worth the wait.


Katie says she is sorry she didn’t manage to text me earlier to wish me a Happy Birthday but she had an exam from 9 a.m. till 11 a.m.  I notice that her text came through at 11.22 a.m. and feel touched that she thought of me so quickly, given everything else that was going on for her today.  We have a good chat, Katie and Eleanor and I before they have to return to their homework (Elle) and revision (Katie).   


My Boy texts to say that he will be phoning later, once he has put his three tired little boys to bed. I’ll look forward to that.


It hasn’t been the best of birthdays, feeling rubbish as I do – but every card, every birthday wish, every text, every Facebook message, every email, every phone call has lifted my spirits. Like Young Morgan's balloons, I'll be soaring by tomorrow...


Thank you so much, everyone.  May all your birthdays be happy ones!

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Latest comments

23.04 | 20:15

lovely and heartwarming - an inspiration to us all x

09.03 | 12:07

Love this story told as ever beautifully.x

10.11 | 21:31

What a super account of a special event. I loved meeting you last night and seeing your creation come together. I’m so pleased you got so much from the activity

07.09 | 13:17

I have broad shoulders x

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