I’m sorry I’ve left this post in my Drafts for 2 weeks now. Every attempt to make this “newsy” or “timely” has been continuously evaded and rethought. Instead, I have left you at the mercy of Spam. And I’m sorry “Twiggy” but I just don’t think my About Me page is the “most helpful article” you’ve ever read.
Alas. Instead of writing about my birthday I’ve been occupied by life that isn’t exactly in line with healthy living. This included..
- Hanging in Wrigleyville
- Touring the city with a friend from NY
- Overeating at Free Panera Bread day at work
- A Father’s Day brunch and catchup with Dad after his 10 day Europe vaca. Yum, German chocolate!
- A Father’s Day/ step-sister’s birthday bbq with the Step-fam
- Wine, froyo and patio catch-ups with the girls
- Losing power for 24 hours after a dreadful storm. (Sigh at the candelit showers.)
- Career Fairing my heart out
- Attending my second Ragan Comedy Networking Event
- LA Boy’s 36-hour business trip visit
- Trying cool beers on the typical Thursday night out
- My Savta’s (step-grandma’s) 91st birthday
- Chicago Gay Pride Parade shenanigans
- Much needed snoozing
But instead of blogging about any of these things, I’m going to leap backward 13 days and finally talk about June 14.
My 23rd birthday!
And as I mentioned, this year I threw my negative attitude (also known as crying and angry-drunk fits) to the curb and embraced the love. THANK YOU everyone for the love!!
While the celebration has come and gone, I really want to share how it went because I had some a wonderful experience and I think it’s important to identify how much a healthy outlook on something so daunting (for me) can really make all the difference! I really tried to enjoy the moment, appreciate each person’s involvement and not get caught up in what did or didn’t happen.
So without any further delay, here’s a recap of my 23rd in 23:
1. I picked Saturday June 11 as the celebration day with nothing important in mind. Luckily, it wound up being perfect timing! So many friends I haven’t seen in a while were in town and able to come partyyy. There were probably 40 people in my friends’ apartment where we hosted a pregame from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Because the pregame is obviously the best part of the night.
2. During that time I underwent a small wardrobe malfunction and outfit change. Just like celebrities do.
Outfit #1 from Zara before the skirt’s zipper broke.
Outfit #2 aka dress from Megan’s closet (Forever 21?)
3. And like any good foodie, I hung in the kitchen most of the time, trying Flaming Dr. Pepper shots for the first (and second and third time)! My fav group of guys brought all the necessary equipment as their party present, and I believe it involved lighting a shot of Bacardi 151 on fire before dumping it into a cup of beer.
Go Tim, Go!
4. For the party, I also made my own white wine sangria which included pear wine, champagne, pineapple juice, orange juice, mango and apples.
5. The apartment hostesses went all out to provide a beautiful assortment of baked goodies and flowers…
Sangria, flowers, cupcakes, cookies
6. And bottles and bottles of wine and champagne.
7. I apparently decided that my birthday was the excuse everyone else needed to party really hard, too. I think it worked.
Gotta get down on
Friday Mel’s Birthday..
8. Around midnight, I stood on a chair while the whole room – which included an assortment of close friends and handfuls of randoms – sang happy birthday to me! In any other year, I probably would have hid in a closet and denied it was my birthday (true story). This year, I made a wish and blew out a flaming shot 🙂
9. Then we hit the late night bar Hangge Uppe, where I spun and spun until I got veryyy tired.
10. Later at 4 am, we had some afties – which mostly meant indulging in some late night fafties and gossip. I led the chips and salsa and gauc domination.
11. I really had the happiest evening. Until I woke up and realized my friends’ apartment looked like it belonged in the movie The Hangover. There were dirty dishes, crumbs, questionable items and alcohol everywhere! Like a very good friend who caused a huge rukus, I cleaned it up.
And this was just the table…
12. On the hilarious walk to my car, my team of ‘burb-dwellers and I stumbled into a new wave of graffiti hitting the streets of Chicago. Pokemon? As the ultimate Pokefan way back when, this made my day!!
13. Festivities began again on Tuesday at midnight (the time usually reserved for shots back in my heyday) when my sister brought in a cake she made herself. The cake was cookie on the bottom, chocolate ice cream in the middle and brownie on top. I died and went to dessert heaven! What a cutie for designing the concoction herself.
14. I realize I’ve gotten older because instead of I no longer get a slew of calls and texts like I used to around midnight. Instead, I woke up to a ton of texts and had my phone going nuts at 8 am and 5 pm. Guess we’re all on true grown up schedules by now.
15. My boss aided in the indulgence by bringing in birthday donuts.
16. I was originally planning on checking out a new froyo place with my sister for lunch but wound up getting a $10 worth of Whole Foods salad bar instead. The food made me realize I need to visit WF for meal times more often.
17. After work, it was off to dinner with my mom, sister and step-dad at a wonderful seafood restaurant called Braxton! The past few years, I have opted out of going out to eat in favor of having cake at home with friends and family. This year, we decided to celebrate in style with some very fancy and fresh fish dishes and a nice bottle of wine. The restaurant told you exactly where each fish came from and included in-season specialties. All of our entrees came with choice of sides and there was a great selection of roasted potatoes, maed potatoes, asparagus, broccolini and polenta grits. At the end of the night, they gave us a choice of dessert and we went with their famous carrot cake! It was one of the nicest meals I’ve had in a while and the fresh ingredients made the meal filling without that disgusting full feeling. My favorite thing about Braxton was the waiters walking around with fresh rolls, right out of the oven, to put on your table.
I know the camera phone doesn’t do the dishes justice.
18. With all this deliciousness, I decided to take on Sable’s advice and my slogan again: Birthday (and celebration) calories don’t count!
19. I felt so special and so full of love! I’m still feeling lucky right now thinking about the awesome people I’m lucky to know. I really appreciate the effort everyone made and it was a bit of wake-up call to make more of an effort for others’ birthdays. After all, each text and wall post made a difference. I think I sometimes forget how much simple things can aid in someone’s happiness.
20. And because no birthday is complete without presents, I need to give a quick mention and thank you to those who completely surprised me! A few special friends and boys in my life really put some smiles on my face.
Is there anything better than mail?
21. Thank YOU ALL for an amazing celebration. You showed me birthdays are not to be feared. You showed me that sometimes it’s OK to step into the spotlight. And most of all you showed me how grateful I should be – to have such fantastic people in my life.
22. Turns out I guess I don’t really have 23 things to say about my birthday. Woops.
23. Thanks if you’ve made it this far! I don’t want to let you down so.. Did you know June 14th is also Flag Day?! So HAPPY BELATED FLAG DAY to all!!
PS! If there are any Chicago bloggers out there who haven’t heard yet, Allie and Sophia had the great idea to host a Chicago Blogger Meet-up tomorrow, Tuesday June 28 at 7 pm at Karyn’s On Green! Let us know if you’re interested!