Miscellaneous Magic || Birthday Thoughts: Twenty-Third Time’s the Charm?

Miscellaneous Magic header, depicting two crossed wands emitting sparks

Can you believe I’m 23?

I can’t either, mostly because time super does not feel real this year. But somehow, it’s definitely happening, and even more surprising, I think the universe gifted me a spare brain cell. How do I know? Because I have birthday thoughts.

Could they be pearls of wisdom, or just the exhaust fumes from my disparate brain cells spinning really really really really fast? Finish reading this post, and then you tell me! 🎉

I have to admit, most of my birthday thoughts can be summed up as OH NO.

Oof, maybe not the most celebratory note? But it’s true! With 2020 going all kinds of sideways at once, it’s a little horrifying to get another year older. The passage of time is relentless and uncontrollable, and a lot of the time, it makes me feel like I haven’t actually accomplished anything. So hitting 23, especially when I haven’t met many of my goals for this year? It’s a little demoralizing.

But on birthdays, we celebrate, DAMN IT.

And more than that, on my birthday, I’m celebrating what I have done over the last year! Like finally getting myself in to see a therapist, and finally getting on medication that helps me manage my mental health! Or learning to sew and craft at a stronger level, and preparing to open an Etsy to share that craft and also provide for myself! I mean, these are seriously big steps I’ve taken! About a year ago, I couldn’t sew a thing. Since then, I’ve made PJ pants, booksleeves, and a tote organizer, with plans to branch out into so much more!

(In fact, I’m planning to sew a whole dang shirt later today. Wish me luck and lots of patience! 🤞)

Basically, this is a crafting year. I’m crafting physical things, yes, but I’m learning to craft a better sense of self and better sense of worth.

2020 sucks, but I’m working on the whole self-love thing, y’all.

Angry Penguin Crafting Glitter Heart
Actual footage of me learning to love myself more!

So what birthday thoughts do I even have left at this point?

Well, for one, I’m wondering what the heck my sister is going to give me as a gift. Every time I’ve pestered her for hints, she’s given me the smile that says at least part of her gift is meant to tease me to hell and back.

Which is fair, given that the last two occasions I’ve given her gifts, they’ve been either wrapped in obnoxious puns OR in multiple layers of wrapping paper and a cruel amount of tape. She’s well within her rights to snark at me, even on my birthday.

And I’m wondering if birthday dinner is going to turn out well! We’re going to try making a cherry balsamic pork chop recipe with some homemade wedge fries and lots of spinach (it’s my favorite veggie, I’m not sorry), and I’m getting SO HUNGRY just thinking about it! I’ve also lobbied for a cookie cake. If I can’t get that, those little M&M ice cream cookie sandwiches will do just fine too. It’s the simple needs, right?

Most of all, though, I’m wondering what the coming year is going to hold for me. I want to hope it’s good things despite the state of the world, and that’s a cautious, fragile sort of hope right now.

But let’s grab hold of that, shall we? And let’s shoot for 23 for 23!

Why not make a list of 23 goals to accomplish this year? We’ll start small! We’ll start personal! We’ll start here.

  1. Reach 500 followers here on Hail & Well Read
  2. Open my bookish Etsy
  3. Open a crafty Etsy
  4. Start designing enamel pins
  5. Complete 50 embroidery hoops
  6. Reread at least 5 complete series
  7. Sew a button-up shirt
  8. Make 100 booksleeves
  9. Finish my Pokédex in Pokémon Sword
  10. Finish an old fanfiction WIP
  11. Outline a new fanfiction WIP
  12. Outline an original novel idea
  13. Re-outline a past NaNoWriMo project
  14. Try crafting bookmarks
  15. Finish building my desk with my dad
  16. Build a bigger, better pen for my bunnies
  17. Cross five complete shows off my backlog list
  18. Refine my review index into something useful and flexible
  19. Get an undercut
  20. Sew with knits for the first time
  21. Get my ARC backlog down to zero
  22. Read 100 books
  23. Find a new series (books, shows, games, anything!) to love with my whole heart

Now, those seem doable, don’t you think? No need to leave it up to the world when I just have to leave it up to me. And honestly? I kind of really like that idea. 😊


Thanks for joining me for birthday thoughts, folks!

Means a lot to share this space with you all on my birthday, especially given how limited socialization in person is right now. And since I’m not one for wishes when I can make plans, you make a wish instead! 🎂

Oh, and don’t let me forget the annual birthday bun photo! It’s tradition, folks. ❤️

2020 Birthday Photo with Squirt, a Small Gray Bunny

Leave a Reply