Different birthdays, different flowers and a gladsome mind

It was the last week of March;  it was the 27th;  the Archbishop of York was in town;

The Archbishop of York came

The Archbishop of York came

and I was at home, celebrating my birthday…  in the good company of  wine

Grapes to eat, wine to drink

Grapes to eat, wine to drink

and song

Jack singing Happy Birthday

Jack singing Happy Birthday

and old friends, bearing beautiful gifts of fine paper

Purple and pink for a present

Purple and pink for a present

 

 

Books for the Garden

Books for the Garden

 

 

 

and cloth

New robes

New robes

and flowers of all sorts, on stems

Birthday beauty

Birthday beauty

and on cards, each carrying  messages of loving kindness and good will.

It was the loveliest of  days to be honouring the process of growing  and ageing.  I hope the Archbishop thought so, too, even though he wasn’t at my party  at all, except in the very vaguest  way, via my life lived within the framework of  my historical and ancestral  relationship with the Church of England. (You see, I wouldn’t be here in this 21st Century New Zealand, if my church-going  forebears hadn’t decided to take assisted passages, in the 19th century, to a new life in the Church of England settlement of Christchurch.)

The Archbishop of York was here  to  help the Anglican Church prepare for a much more senior birthday than mine; the bicentennial of the beginnings of the Christian Gospel  in Aotearoa, New Zealand.

And he was here to address a symposium entitled, ‘Poverty, Global and Local’.

Which made me think that, no matter how  differently we celebrate a birthday, or, how disparate our ages, to grow up and grow old is a privilege; for state and church and person alike.

and for that privilege, and every strand of grey hair on my head,  I must remember to be truly grateful and of a gladsome mind, always.

Update:

This post comes with a HUGE thank you to everyone who helped celebrate my birthday. I am looking forward to kicking up my heels and having a grand time with you all again in 2015. Put the date in your diaries now. 🙂

Celebrating

Celebrating Spanish Style

Footnote : This is an excellent article on the art of Mabel Royds http://www.addisonembroideryatthevicarage.co.uk/2013/11/29/mabel-royds-printmaker/

© silkannthreades

the Anglican Church prepares to celebrate the bi-centennial of the beginnings of the Christian gospel in Aotearoa, New Zealand. – See more at: http://www.archbishopofyork.org/articles.php/3053/visit-to-new-zealand-by-the-archbishop-of-york#sthash.A6MMaMGb.dpuf

 

the Anglican Church prepares to celebrate the bi-centennial of the beginnings of the Christian gospel in Aotearoa, New Zealand. – See more at: http://www.archbishopofyork.org/articles.php/3053/visit-to-new-zealand-by-the-archbishop-of-york#sthash.A6MMaMGb.dpuf
the Anglican Church prepares to celebrate the bi-centennial of the beginnings of the Christian gospel in Aotearoa, New Zealand. – See more at: http://www.archbishopofyork.org/articles.php/3053/visit-to-new-zealand-by-the-archbishop-of-york#sthash.A6MMaMGb.dpuf
the Anglican Church prepares to celebrate the bi-centennial of the beginnings of the Christian gospel in Aotearoa, New Zealand. – See more at: http://www.archbishopofyork.org/articles.php/3053/visit-to-new-zealand-by-the-archbishop-of-york#sthash.A6MMaMGb.dpuf

 

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86 thoughts on “Different birthdays, different flowers and a gladsome mind

  1. cindy knoke

    Happy belated birthday my friend! What a joyful and uplifting post. Wishing you a healthy, happy year, and look forward to sharing another year with you my wonderful blogging friend!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thanks Cindy. I am planning to make the most of every unbirthday between now and my next birthday. And all your lovely posts will help that process. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Mary Mageau

    Happy Belated Birthday. What a wonderful day you celebrated with all the best things of life: wine, friends, lovely presents of beautiful books, cards expressing love. may you also celebrate many happy returns.

    Reply
  3. tamara

    Happy birthday! I was visiting your country yesterday, in a way, as my friends came back from 3 weeks New Zeland trip and made a photo-video presentation for us. You have a fabulous country, I like your lakes and plants! And talking about old age, I LOVE your old trees (forgot the name) that were buried for thousand years and are now diged up to become fantastic art objects out of this old wood!

    Reply
  4. Clanmother

    I am going to be with you kicking up my heels and celebrating everyday. Let us sing, dance, and climb a mountain (figurative, of course) this year.

    “There are three hundred and sixty-four days when you might get un-birthday presents, and only one for birthday presents, you know.”
    Lewis Carroll

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      I was also given some other lovely floral skirts which will be great once spring is here again. So, yes, lots of beautiful gifts.

      Reply
  5. KerryCan

    Lots of people I know seem to hate their birthdays as they grow older. It’s very refreshing to hear you be so happy and thankful to have, as you say, the privilege!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      I have been known to be less than enthusiastic about birthdays but I’ve decided, if I am lucky enough to be growing older, I may as well make the most of it!

      Reply
  6. mmmarzipan

    Sounds like a fabulous birthday! And I love the images in this post’s gallery… made me smile as soon as I saw them appear in my reader! 😀

    Reply
  7. Heather in Arles

    I loved seeing how much you are cared for and appreciated in your birthday wishes…beautiful!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you Heather. There were lots of emails and phone calls and skype calls as well, so I felt very special. Plus a video skype from a former beau (from my teens) and his dear mother which was really an awww moment.

      Reply
  8. Juliet

    What a fabulous birthday. I’m intrigued by the gardening books and found the youtube clip really uplifting: heavenly singing, thank you.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      The gardening books are not new publications but it’s lovely to look back and see how gardens were described or written about in previous decades. Garden writers often have a good sense of fun, too. Glad you enjoyed the youtube clip. There is so much beautiful music available, I often have trouble deciding which piece/version to use.

      Reply
  9. YellowCable

    You had a lovely birthday. I like how you viewed these little beautiful things around you as celebration of the day. Even Jack was included (how did you make him sings and what songs may I ask ?) 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Yes, YC, a lot of little things made up the nice day. Jack will start singing if I sing anything in the highest note possible (for me). When my daughter was at home he loved to join her when she was singing classical or opera songs. He particularly liked Wagner.

      Reply
  10. Tiny

    Lovely birthday…beautiful flowers (LOVE the orchid!) and real cards! Bumble says hi to Jack. I’m sure they would be friends 🙂

    Reply
  11. Travelling Kiwi

    I’m glad to know your birthday was a fine celebration. I’m sure the Bishop would have loved to join you if he had been able to. The 200th birthday of the Gospel in Aotearoa will surely be another fine celebration, especially in the Bay of Islands on Christmas Day. Here’s a nice link to the story of the Christmas Day service in 1814: http://www.gospel2014.org/marsden/

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      That’s a great link. I particularly enjoyed this section http://www.gospel2014.org/history/ and this comment. “The engagement of Ruatara and Marsden, iwi and tauiwi, Māori and missionaries, inaugurated the missionary starting point at Rangihoua in December 1814. This is a foundational event in New Zealand’s history. It ranks alongside the encounters between Māori and Abel Tasman in 1642, Māori and James Cook in 1769, and the signing of the Treaty between Māori and the British Crown at Waitangi in February 1840.”

      Reply
      1. Su Leslie

        So do I; I’ve tried everything from leaving the country to staying in bed to trying to “enjoy” — I’m still conflicted, so I’m very glad you enjoyed yours. Cheers, Su.

        Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Definitely, or perhaps as we grow, our birthdays should too. So at 30 years, we may celebrate for a month, at 40, for 40 days and nights, etc . Gosh, why hasn’t commerce grasped this idea yet? Fortunes could be made out of the birthday business.

      Reply
  12. greenlightlady

    These are all lovely pictures–especially the yellow orchid. It truly is a privilege to live long enough to get silver hair. Happy Birthday!

    Blessings ~ Wendy

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you Wendy. I love my silver/gray hair 🙂 I love the orchid too. I haven’t had an orchid before. This one is gorgeous. I hope I can keep it alive. Indoor plants and I have a vexed relationship.

      Reply
  13. Leya

    “To grow up and grow old is a privilege…” and so it is to understand that it is a privilege. Not to be taken for granted. I know you would never do that, but I know of people who do.

    I hope to be able to read a bit more when May is over. This time of the year is the worst…I miss the silent hours late at night when I have my blogging friends to myself. Now I have a hard time trying to cope with my tests and correcting them and thinking of fair grades…I don’t want to complain, it’s just that I feel I want to excuse my absense…

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      How quickly the year passes. I remember how busy you were this time last year and then suddenly it was time to say farewell to another group of students. I also love my silent time at night. Yours will come again. 🙂

      Reply
      1. Leya

        Oh, yes it will. The time. As you say – a year has disappeared, and where did it go? This year I have no students taking their exams. I’ve only had first and second year students. But, next spring I will say farewell to my own class (I’m a mentor) and that will be tough.

        Reply
        1. Gallivanta Post author

          Delicate indeed. Such refined sensibilities until he takes it into his head that he can’t possibly tolerate the passerby, outside the fence, a second longer, and launches into the most horrendous yapping.

        2. BEAUTYCALYPSE

          😀

          too true! perry for instance doesn’t like strangers. if they ask mum one question, he is rather unnerved, but beware if they’re stupid enough to ask a second one! my ears start to bleed…

        3. BEAUTYCALYPSE

          yeah, they’re not as evil and mischievous as for example fox terriers, but obviously just as ants-in-the-pants-ish 😀

  14. Mary

    What a fantastic way to celebrate “you!” Looks like you had the best of times and all in style, looking forward to the 2015 celebration!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      And, next year, if I plan a little better, I might be able to show you a birthday cake, overloaded with candles. 🙂 I didn’t make a cake this year!

      Reply
  15. Tracy Rhynas

    It looks as though you had a lovely, colourful birthday – the “new robes” look especially dazzling 🙂 This reminds me of the post you often see on Facebook, about remembering to be grateful to grow older as it is a privilege denied to many.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Ah, thanks for the reminder. I have found the quote “Don’t regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.” by Unknown.

      Reply
      1. Steve Schwartzman

        With the effect that awesome has come to mean ‘good, nice, okay’ or to have practically no meaning at all. Two other common adjectives that have been similarly devalued are incredible and its more-native-English counterpart unbelievable.

        Reply
        1. Gallivanta Post author

          I know…it’s literally unbelievable and totally incredible what has happened. Hope you had an awesome nature walk. (Oh dear, I shouldn’t be naughty, but I am sure I debase the English language more often than I would care to admit. 😦 )

  16. dadirri7

    looks like a perfect birthday celebration Gallivanta, with flowers and song and wine … and that sense of connection to the wider community and its history … wishing you many more!

    Reply

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