Ok so the birthday was less traumatic than it could have been.
My wonderful new housemates Jenny and Steve (and other 'adopted' housemates) threw me a party. There were banners, streamers, fancy tableclothes, balloons and music. All good. Add to this one very tired Merys and you had the potential for floods of tears... yet I managed to remain composure.
We had an enormous Chinese takeaway and tidied the flat after everyone had left (quite a mammoth job in the end) but all was good.
I got a wonderful selection of gifts including Amazon vouchers, many bottles of wine, lots of chocolate, Ben and Jerry's, various shopping vouchers, a large bouquet of flowers, money and a new sparkly 30Gb iPod Video!!
I swear, without such great housemates I would go stir crazy. I didn't think I would enjoy living with 18 year olds again, and I think they were very dubious when I moved in, but we've learnt to accept each other at face value.
It also helps that they've seen me hideously drunk and attempting to blow up a very phallic pink balloon.