I celebrated my 28th birthday over the course of four days this past weekend . Can you believe it? I had forgotten all about the "birthday weekend" phenomenon during our time up North, because other than a nice dinner with my family and a Starbucks date with friends, there wasn't much fanfare to be had without extended family.
We are home again, and I was spoiled rotten. My girlfriends brought a surprise brunch to my house Friday morning, and we stayed in cooking to Motown music while taking turns holding Summer and playing with Hailey and Robin. It was so thoughtful and just what I needed. I teared up when I read their card, because they told me they appreciated how I still made time for them. I feel like in returning home, I have brought so many extra people with me that I don't have the time I would like to spend with my best friends, but then again-- none of us really do. We are all busy in our own way. Thank goodness for birthdays, giving us all a chance to make the concerted effort to reunite and giggle together.
Saturday night we had family over for dinner, and we all sat together for a delicious fajita feast. We had to put two tables together, there were so many of us! Abby loved helping me open my cards and gifts while my hands were busy holding Summer. The girls loved when we turned off the lights and my mom paraded in a homemade chocolate cake lit up with candles. I was so excited I forgot to make a wish!
That evening, Rich and I went out to a friend's house to play board games after we tucked the girls into bed. Our lovely host had signs and balloons hung for me and baked cupcakes--see! Spoiled!
The night was the only damper of the weekend: I took Hailey to the ER in the middle of the night because she was having a croup attack and her airway was closing up. It was very scary, but she is doing fine and back to her regular, sweet self.
Sunday, I rested with the girls and went to my Dad's house for another birthday dinner of Colonnade pizza (a family tradition). Hailey and Robin smeared food-coloured icing from the cake all over themselves and looked like creepy face paint-smudged clowns.
Monday was my actual birthday, and I think Rich was getting a little tired of all this birthday business! (but he didn't show it) I received phone calls from far away friends and family, a special flower delivery, more sweet cards and thoughtful gifts from the people I love. My girlfriends and I went to the Mud Oven, a cool pottery painting studio for a private evening of snacks and painting. It was so much fun, and something different. It would have made for great pictures, but my hands were busy painting, holding Summer and eating!
I loved spending my birthday in Ottawa and getting to see almost all of the people I love most in such a concentrated amount of time. I am blessed and loved. Today is my first full day as a 28-year-old and I am spending it with my three youngest girls, on a sunny but windy autumn day. I am nursing a cold so I am sipping tea, listening to classical music, planning to do some gentle yoga and reading one of my birthday gifts: Elizabeth Gilbert's new fiction.