Happy birthday to me!

I've recently celebrated yet another birthday.  I'm one of these people who loves birthdays (both mine and those of other people) -  one of the best things about birthdays is cake, as it is perhaps the only day of the year when it is acceptable (indeed, encouraged) to eat cake for breakfast.

This cake is my favourite cake in the whole wide world.  It's from Annie Bell's Gorgeous Cakes book and is a white chocolate mousse cake, with strawberries and raspberries.  It is a bit time-consuming to make, whilst it's not at all hard (none of her recipes are, they're all straightforward, clearly explained and well-written) a few of the stages require chilling time so it's a cake that needs attending to every now and again over the course of a few hours.  White chocolate and raspberries is a classic combination, and for the past couple of birthdays I have made this for myself.  Ben said it's the best cake he's ever eaten, which is quite the compliment! I never make it at any other point during the year, so it's retained a little bit of extra-special-ness.

I'm not going to write a 'look at all the stuff I got for my birthday' post, I just want to say how thankful I am to have such lovely friends and family members who know me so well and buy me just the right thing.  And even wrap it in wrapping paper with cats on!

I'm a great fan of cards.  I love sending and receiving post, and I feel it's important to choose the right card for people.  I can be incredibly organised and buy cards several months in advance if I see the perfect card for someone.  Whilst I do have a supply of pretty cards which are relatively generic and useful for that last minute event/occasion/something I've forgotten it is great to send and receive cards which are so thoughtful.

This amazing card was sent to me by Snowy Owl - look! It's a woodland scene on the inside (I've covered up the personal message) and it comes with stickers! So you can decorate your own woodland scene! And owls!  Absolutely brilliant.  I completely forgot about this (somehow) and only found the insert when I was taking my cards down yesterday - ah the joy of discovering them!

 Clearly people know me well, as many of my gifts were owl themed.  Here are some great socks, with ears! My lovely old housemate Sooty Owl sent me some owl coasters which are lovely, they've gone in a box to be packed and I'm looking forward to using them in the new flat!

My mum gave me a set of five bamboo double pointed needles - for anyone who's ever knitted socks on DPNs it's much easier to use five needles rather than four, but most sets of DPNs only have four needles, unless you buy a sock kit with yarn.  Now I have a set of five DPNs and I've already started knitting a friend's socks for Christmas.  Organised!

Ben and I love watching Masterchef Australia, which we think is a hundred times better than the UK version (or indeed any other version we've seen).  The judges, and guest chefs, have written a number of books and Ben bought me two of them.  A lot of the ingredients I've never heard of (mainly types of seafood and fruit and vegetables) so I might need to do a bit of research before I attempt any of the recipes, but definitely looking forward to giving them a go soon.  Half the kitchen is currently packed up (cake tins take up so much room - the contents of half a cupboard took up two boxes!) so this is another thing to add on to my list of 'stuff to do when we've moved into the new flat'.

Annoyingly, the postman didn't deliver any post on my birthday - our block of flats has a tradesman button, meaning anyone can get in through the front door before it automatically locks at 1pm (after which time you need to have a key to the front door) and so the postman can in through the front door and deliver our post through each flat's letterbox.  If it's after 1pm and so the front door is locked, all you need to do is ring the doorbell of the flat you want, and the occupier can let you in.  This is quite straightforward.  The day after my birthday I received a lot of post, much of it with 'couldn't deliver on [yesterday's date] as no access'.  Pah! All the postman had to do was ring the doorbell for me to let him in (I was at home all day) just as the courier from MyHermes managed to do when he delivered a parcel!  I contacted Royal Mail about it and they said I didn't hear the doorbell ring.  I was watching out for the postman on my birthday and my desk overlooks the front of the property - I am pretty sure I would have noticed the postman!

Anyway.  My birthday post was all delivered, and I suppose it did spread out the birthday joy!  There was indeed a lot of birthday joy, thank you to friends and family once again for my lovely lovely presents.  Now I just need to pack them...!


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