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Samantha Hahn’s watercolor illustration and typography. She also designs patterns:

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This year, for the first time, I didn’t spend my birthday with my parents. I stayed home with my boyfriend, I’ve also had some health problems lately, that caused me to cancel my original big celebration plans. The outcome of the day was uncertain to say the least.

But boy, did he deliver! He served me breakfast in bed, after waking me up with my gift, which is the beautiful camera bag that’s slung around me in the photo. (I’m a horrible, horrible morning person, if you wake me up before nine, on any day, you better be bearing breakfast or gifts.) There after we went for a drive through town looking for cool places to take photos. We ended up at Safari’s, which is a nursery/function venue/student hangout. I was amazed, the place could be a theme park, the nursery is huge and the installations and exhibitions are magical. I almost felt like Indiana Jones in the deep jungle. (There is even a crashed vintage airplane in the tropical plants area! Which added to the entire Indie-vibe.)

We went home to have a swim, it was an unusually hot day, about 36 degrees. And relaxed on the lawn with a lunch of toasted smoked chicken sandwiches that Willem made with love. Finally we just sank into bed and watched movies together.

I always feel guilty when I admit that my birthday is my favorite day of the year, but if one looks at the people I am fortunate to have in my life, it is no surprise. I even received birthday blessings from Malaysia! Thank you to all my old friends, new friends, and family for making me feel so special!


Today my boyfriend and I have been dating for one year. Today a year ago he swept me off my feet in the most amazing way. When I met Willem I was dating someone else, but as corny as it sounds I fell in love as soon as I first saw him. I found some courage somewhere and went to speak to him and he invited me to paint with him on Friday nights. πŸ˜€ Of course I went and loved every single moment of being around him….but I was dating another great guy, whom I didn’t want to hurt. I opened up and told Willem I was falling in love with him and he said he felt the same way. So I decided to break the news to my current boyfriend, and Willem agreed he would give me some space to sort all that out. Willem was also finishing his Paramedic course and decided to focus on his studies for the remaining few weeks. We arranged a date, and we would see each other again as boyfriend and girlfriend on the 20th of October.

I had stayed home that entire morning trying on and deciding against my entire wardrobe. And finally around sunset he phoned to say he had arrived at my front gate. I ran to invite him in, but as I approached the car I was stunned by the most romantic scene. He had parked his car on the sidewalk under the Jakaranda trees, their purple blossoms floating down around him. Complementing the purple dress I decided on. I could hear one of my favorite songs drifting from the car radio. And he stood ever so suavely leaning against the passenger side and next to him on the roof of the car he had lit a candle. We kissed without saying hello, and he hasn’t left my apartment yet.

Still after an entire year I still love all the little things about him. I love that he laughs and dances in his sleep, and that he makes the best toasted cheese and tomato sandwiches in the world. I love the way his guitar looks in my flat and the way he looks when he plays it. I love that we create time to be creative together and that we both love spinach and feta pies. I even love that we will still blow off our friends just to lie in bed and watch movies together.
Thank you, my little-tall house gnome, for the cuddling, the kisses and especially for all the inspiration.


I'm on your right, the bride's in the middle and the lovely Talia to her right.

My best friend and soul sister surprised me and two other friends with a champagne breakfast and an invitation to be one of her bride’s maids last weekend. When I stopped crying and tearfully agreed I realized that for the first time I understood why people get emotional at weddings.
Being an only child I care for this girl as if she were my only family and it truly is a thing of beauty to know that she is promising her entire future to a person whom I trust will devote his to her happiness.

Apart from all the sentimentality we also had a rocking time! It truly felt like a passage from a romantic comedy. A young bride and her confidants laughing and playing as she enthusiastically showed us the venue she chose.

I am sure that being this bride’s maid will be another unlikely adventure that I can’t help but enjoy!

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