Today is my birthday. I am 26. Does that make me in my late 20's or I am still mid-20's? Well, whatever part of the 20's I am in is irrelevant. It's my birthday!! If you know me at all, you know that I love birthdays! I make a very big deal out of them. I love to celebrate and go all out. Josh can certainly attest to this. My parents always did a great job when we were growing up to celebrate our birthdays. Especially mine, because I was the first child. Typical birthdays included a few years at Chuck E Cheeses. Parties at the park. Sleepovers. Pool parties. So much fun and so many memories.
As I reflect on some of my past birthdays, I would like to share three that really stand out to me...
The first one was my 16th birthday. Of course everyone remembers this age. License, dating, freedom! Well, my 16th birthday was a momentous event thanks to some of my classmates. Allow me to explain. As I have mentioned in past posts, I was kind of a dork in high school and just plain awkward. But somehow, people still liked me. In my math class sophomore year, my teacher found out quickly that I wasn't able to date until I was 16 and made a countdown on his whiteboard all school year, he called me the "class project." On my actual birthday, I was surprised to find that my classmates had decorated the whole room, ordered pizza, and had a birthday cake waiting for me when I came to class. It was such a great little party we had and so meaningful to me. That same class period, my mom picked me up from school and took me to the San Clemente DMV where I got my license!! I didn't end up going on a date for two more years!!
My second birthday I'll never forget was my 21st. I already had my mission call and was leaving exactly one week later. I had found out that Boyz II Men were going to be playing at the House of Blues at Downtown Disney. I went with Darci and Melissa. While we were waiting in line, they were coming around with wristbands for those who were underage and would not be drinking that night. The one time where I can finally show my ID! They got to me and asked for my ID. I quickly blurted out, "Oh, I don't drink." They slapped a wristband on me so quickly I couldn't even reach for my wallet if I wanted too! We still had a lot of fun and sang our little hearts out!!
The third birthday that stands out is my 22nd (yes, just one year later). I was on my mission and had been diagnosed with Endocarditis. I had already been in the hospital for five days (went in on Cinco de Mayo). But on my birthday was when my dad came and we started the longest daddy-daughter date that has been recorded (is that a fact?...sure!)! We had a lot of fun together...we watched movies and 24, were woken up at all hours of the night so my vitals could be taken, he bought me the ugliest thank you cards in the gift shop and never lived that down, bought me the matching puzzle to my ugly thank you cards, kept my family back home updated on everything, shared the gospel with nurses, he got to visit my areas and have dinner with some of the members, met a lot of people that came to visit me in the hospital, was loaned a truck for the entire time he was there by someone in the ward I had been serving, all while he slept in the tiniest chair next to my bed for two weeks! He is by far, the best dad ever!! Thanks Dad for all those wonderful memories.
Yesterday was a great birthday and here is how it played out... I went to work like normal and around 11:30, Josh came by and surprised me with balloons and cupcakes from "The Chocolate." It was such a great surprise. I love that he is so thoughtful! I introduced him to a couple people at work and then he left to go back to work. At 1:00, I met up with Jordan at Good Wood. We enjoyed a delicious meal and then more dessert...a brownie sundae (compliments of Good Wood)! We decided to run over to the mall real quick. Let's just say we weren't done shopping until 5:00!!!! I only came out with $10 sunglasses! Then I went home and opened my birthday cards and gift from Josh. It was a beautiful gold watch that I have had my eyes on lately. Thank you to everyone for the gifts! After presents, we went to dinner at Carrabbas. Oh my goodness it was soooooooo good!! I got the Pork Tenderloins wrapped in bacon with garlic mashed potatoes and Josh got a chicken pizza (left overs for lunch today). The bread they kept bringing out to us was so soft, they even gave us a loaf to go! Then they brought us out MORE DESSERT! It was vanilla ice cream with carmel syrup and cinnamon roasted pecans. YUM! When we were finished eating, we went to Tahnee and Tyler's where I opened a gift from them. A really cute sun hat for when I am laying out at the beach this whole summer!! Around 8:00, friends started showing up for a little get together. We had cake and ice cream and blew out the candles. When Josh and I got home, we plopped down on the couch to watch two episodes of LOST. We were going through withdrawls since we didn't watch any on Monday. It was a very fun day and I loved every minute of it!!
*I will post pictures soon as I get them!