Tomorrow's my 38th Birthday and I'm excited. I do love birthday's but it's the day before I find very exciting as it's usually the day you do things for the last time being your old age (I know this sounds very out in left field, but really, just hang in there with me).
I have, over the last few years, looked over my journals and made sure I've moved forward in the past year. If I haven't, then I promise myself that I will in the next one of my year coming up to my next birthday. This is something I do to make sure I don't sit still in life; I don't stagnate, and I think everyone should do it - have a look back over the year they've spent of being their age before their birthday and find out what they've done differently to make this particular year completely different from the previous one.
This year, I have done a lot. After my 37th birthday last year, I met Sir James Galway and his lovely wife after a one-night-only performance at the Performing Arts Complex here in Brisbane. It had been 24 years since he had been here last in 1986 and I had just turned 13 at the time. This time, I brought along with me my first vinyl of his, the book 'Flute' he wrote and the photo of us when he was last here in Brisbane (which his wife was thrilled at seeing!). He was amazed that I had brought along a vinyl that he remembered cutting/recording and he told me that he absolutely loved doing it because they were really his favourites. It was the best night of my life that year! I - along with Mum and about two hundred other people who love Sir James Galway - got to meet him. However, I was the only one who had a vinyl with me; and one of the few who had met him previously and had a photo with me of us.
After the wet and cold Christmas and New Year and the Brisbane Floods, I began 2011 with a new look at my paintings. I hadn't painted for about six months. So, I pulled out a piece of Masonite, sanded it down and painted the background orange and tried out a self-portrait. However, it took a second attempt on a green background and playing 'Mother's Milk' by the Red Hot Chili Peppers on vinyl to get my creative juices going. Four months later, the portrait was finished and I was chafing at the bit to get into another painting... before I knew it, my artistic mojo had come back and I've been spending nearly every afternoon in front of the easel working on one painting or another. Now, I have five paintings ready to go for the beginnings of an exhibition in a few years' time hopefully.
During the year, I posed for a nude for an artist friend. It was something I've wanted to do for a long time; but never had the confidence in myself until now. Then, I was invited to the art opening at Barsoma's in Fortitude Valley in July. The other nudes my friend had painted were impressive as well. It was a great opening too.
Also during July, I went to a Mexican Costume Party for my brother's partner's birthday. Even though it poured rain for most of the night and it was freezing cold, we all had a lot of fun eating Mexican food and guessing who everyone was. I went as a Gringo... and one of my brother's friends asked if I really was from the country as my costume didn't look like a costume. I did spot one lady dressed up with feathers and skirts and thought she looked like Frida.
Not long after the party - by about a week or so - I won a tour of the Triple M studios at North Quay here in Brisbane. So, I thought to take Mum with me - as I do whenever I win a prize from them. Not only did we win a tour, we also got to meet three of the daytime hosts - Bangers, Jo and Johnno - and we scored a copy of 'The Living End's new record before it hit the stores. It was a great night as all of the winners got to be in The Cage's studio and do a promo for the station; which is a lot harder than it looks/sounds.
In August, I sold my dear Little Vrooom. This is my Toyota Celica Liftback; my first car. I remember when I bought it, I had dreams about it days before picking it up. It was my car and ran like a dream when I kept the engine going well... and like a tractor when it wasn't driven at least three times a week. So, I took plenty of photos and made a photo album on Facebook and all my family and friends said that my car suited me and told me that it was a pity it had to go. A sad day in my life; but really a great relief too. The wrecker who picked it up saw Mum in tears, but he understood that first car love can often do that to people.
Video Hits closed down the day before I got my car out to get rid of it. I had been watching this show since I was young... since 1985 actually. It was the best show to watch for music; and they closed it one year shy of it turning 25 years old. Why couldn't they wait until it turned that nice round number is beyond me.
In September, I attended a knitting workshop, volunteered more times than I normally do and saw Gabe, Kat and Riley off to Thailand; all in about a week or so of the beginning of the month. This month was extremely busy; and so I didn't get much time to read. I did read two books - and thankfully they were thin ones. Brisbane Festival started and I went into the city to see some of it - for once - and celebrate my cousin Kate's birthday with a freezing cold dinner at the Fox Hotel on Melbourne Street (never go there, it's a dreadful place to dine; and if it's not the meals that suck, it's the service).
On 29th, September, I has my best umbrella stolen from right under my nose at the gallery and I arrived at the bus stop just in time to watch a procession of the Logan City Police Department march by with dogs, vehicles and everything for the Queensland Police Remembrance Day. I took some photos while the opportunity presented itself.
The next day, I was off the Garden City with a friend of mine in the unit complex - who had just gotten back from the UK with her twin boys - and she needed some food. Her car's battery had gone flat because nobody had started her car and so she caught the bus with me. We walked around the place for an hour while I got my money out and she fed the boys. Then, I had to go to my hairdressers and have a much-needed haircut. I get my hair cut twice a year as my hair gets a little out of control and I often do it to get it looking good. This year, I tried a new style and while it's different to what I usually get, I'm warming to it. I actually think it's a little shorter than I'd like, but give it a month or so, and it'll grow into the length I like.
This brings us to now. On Sunday, my brother and his family came home from the very wet and damp Thailand. Last night, I watched the return episode of 'Supernatural' and loved it... then, I was off to bed. Now, I'm looking forward to what I might achieve during the next year of my life. Exactly what that will be I can't say; as I don't like to plan out my life like most. The last time I did that, nothing turned out the way I hoped it did... so now, I take my life one year at a time and whatever happens is whatever happens.This is what I love about the day before my birthday. I can look back on all of this and say: "Yep, I did this... who knows what may come next?" Not me that's for sure!