Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Happy Birthday To Me

I had a very pleasant and nice birthday.

I really try to make people's birthdays special, either by calling or taking someone out to lunch or doing a blog post or emailing or by doing something special or by planning a big theme party or by organizing something neat . . . you get the idea.

Admittedly, I was feeling a little bummed, because as much as I love to make a fuss over other's birthdays, I also love to have fusses made over mine (and I don't want to plan my own fussing since that sort of defeats the purpose) and I was starting to worry that my friends had forgotten.

But, thankfully, I was wrong (more on that in a bit).

My family made the day really nice for me. I got breakfast in bed. (The picture isn't great, so I'm not posting it. It's my blog and I'm in charge of that sort of thing. Behold my power!)

And then I was taken to a mystery location where I learned I would have a pedicure! I've had a few pedicures over the past 10 years and they are always quite a treat and very relaxing.

Next, we went out to lunch, which felt like an especially nice treat since we've cut back on eating out. It was really nice to have yummy food out and be waited on. Yum!

I love eating out for Japanese food.
They even brought me mochi ice cream and sang to me.

We then went home (with my pretty piggies) and relaxed. One of the highlights for me was getting a phone call from my bloggy friend. I was so thrilled! Thrilled, I tell you!! And I love getting birthday phone calls. We also opened presents.

Here I am with flowers from my mom (partly for my birthday and partly to cheer up the house around here after a stressful few days) and I'm wearing a necklace made by my MIL. Both of these fine ladies also called me for my birthday and I enjoyed talking with them.

Then, for "cake" (we do whatever sounds good to the birthday person -- why limit ourselves to cake alone?), Mark made me chocolate-peanut butter-cream cheese brownies. SO delicious!

See how the candles are in the shape of a 36?
Clever, that boy I married.

So, obviously, it was a really nice day. I love my beautiful family and love, love, love spending the day with them and celebrating together. I also got birthday cards and drawings from my awesome kids.

But, you can tell in the pictures from my sleepy-looking eyes, that I had been down and stressed before. It always shows in my eyes (to me, anyway). Even when I feel down, my eyelids literally FEEL heavy. It was kind of a rough week.

And you know how when you're down, you FEEL like you don't know who you could call (even though in the clarity of feeling good, you know you'd have a myriad of people to call)? And I was so hoping to hear from friends for my birthday, just because, well, I enjoy that.

Well . . . over time, little, thoughtful things kept popping up. And I love thoughtfulness. I got texts from friends, calls from friends and SILs, emails from friends (wives AND husbands!), happy birthday comments on our blog (I seriously love those), a fun package in the mail reminding me that I do indeed have the closest thing to sisters, a lunch invite from a friend here in town (we have a tradition of taking each other out for our birthdays and it works out well since our birthdays about about 6 months apart -- we tried a new place this time and that was fun), an ice cream invite from two girlfriends (I love going out for my birthday with friends). My friends hadn't forgotten and the birthday fun sort of got extended!

Yesterday, we went on a walk with a couple of families who live close by and my sweet friend told me she had forgotten my birthday (I was hearing that a lot from different people --I think it's at least partly because my birthday is the 3rd day of March which sort of sneaks up on you after a 28-day month), but she already had a thoughtful gift book she'd had for some time for me (which is funny, because I also got her a birthday book several months ago that I know she'll love and I've been saving it for her birthday, too!).

And then this week, I got together with several girlfriends and while our kids played, we talked birthdays and when they realized that mine had just passed, they excitedly wished me a happy birthday (I'm telling you --it's the little things).

But I want to blog about something that really surprised me and made me feel special (I think surprises like this often do). We went out this weekend with some good friends. It had been WAY too long since we'd seen them and it reminded us how we really need to get back on track seeing each other MUCH more often since it's super therapeutic to get together. She has the BEST laugh and I love being around her. Mark even told them that day, "Stacy needed this." It was like a total transformation in my mood. I really did need it. And it was SO MUCH FUN.

So, here's the story. We went out to eat with our good friends. We used to go more regularly, but my girlfriend recently had a baby and they live over an hour away and between sickness and winter and snow and stuff like that, we hadn't seen her since this past August (mind you, these are friends we usually see 1-2 times a week and we usually eat out with them fairly regularly, so this had been a long time!). So, we set it up to meet halfway and eat out. It was SO good to see them. SO good. We always have such a great time.

When we got there and I saw her, my first thought was, "Wow, she looks GREAT!" Last I'd seen her, she was almost 9 months pregnant. And I also thought the baby looked so big! Of course, I was picturing a newborn and she's almost 6 months old! It's been way too long.

So we enjoyed, as we always do, a great meal and great friendship and conversation. And after we were done and had packaged our doggie bags, the waitresses came out with this AWESOME cake with candles in it and everyone sang Happy Birthday to me! My sweet friend had baked and frosted the cake herself, and even took care to think of things she knows I like and don't like (seriously, how awesome is she?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!!!) and surprised me by phoning ahead to the restaurant and getting there ahead of us to pull this whole thing off without a hitch. I was surprised. I was touched. I was thrilled.

Check out that cake!
It's beautiful (and delicious)!

And you can see it all over my face. My eyes don't have that heavy and tired look. My face doesn't look like I'm forcing a smile. I loved, loved, loved it. It was sooooooooo therapeutic for me to get together with her and her family. She knows me. She knows I can use a night out once in a while. And she's always up for it. And I'm so grateful.

Me and my friend Laura and her new, cute baby
Hooray for awesome friends!


Lindsay said...

Fun! You really got pampered for the big day. I am happy that you did. It was good talking to you Sunday. We should web cam it up tomorrow or this weekend some time.

the emily said...

I'm glad it all worked out. I was feeling so guilty that I didn't call or blog on the family blog or anything, but I hope you will accept the "I was in the hospital and had just given birth" excuse.

Happy birthday Stacy! I hope you love being 36 and that all of your stresses melt away, at least for a few days.

Boquinha said...

Yes, Lindsay, we're all set up and ready to go. Now to coordinate a time . . . :P

Emily, I totally forgot that nothing went up on the family blog. No worries. And your excuse is a pretty good one. We can let it pass this time. ;) Thanks for the birthday wishes.

Jimmy said...

Emily's excuse--come on, baby's aren't that hard to deliver. She could of...

Well, glad you had a great birthday!

Boquinha said...

Jimmy! Thanks for the birthday wishes. It's been weird around here without you commenting!

J Fo said...

What a great day! I can totally see "it all in your eyes" thing. I'm glad that you feel better and thank heavens for great friends!

jenny said...

Oh dear. I'm the worst about birthdays! Happy Belated Birthday! Sounds like it turned out to be an awesome one though! Your hair looks really cute by the way! :)

Laura said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Laura said...

Ok, so I cried. And I'm not a crier, except when I am laughing really hard. That was seriously the most touching and appreciative thing anyone has written about me in a very looooong time. Even Dan was teary when I read it to him. Don't tell him I told you...haha. I'm so glad you liked the cake and we had great fun with you all, as usual!!!!

Boquinha said...

Thanks, guys!

Awww, Laura, how sweet are you! I'm so grateful for you and for our friendship. :) (And I won't tell Dan you told me!) ;)

Stella said...

Aw! Wow! How cool to live though your birthday celebration! It made me want cake, sushi, AND your awesome haircut!!

I miss you friend!

Chelle said...

Happy Birthday Stacy! I hope a birthday wish that's twenty days late counts too. I'm putting March 3rd on my calendar for next year! I appreciate your friendship and I'm so glad you had a good birthday.

Boquinha said...

Thanks, Rachelle! I have yours on our list, too. It's coming up! ;) I'm glad we're friends, too.

kara said...

Okay, so it is the eve of April 3rd, and I want to wish you a HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I was feeling lame before (as I should), then I just read this and felt even more lame (as I should). I've been reading through your posts (okay, so I skip the AI stuff) and loving you have your reunion with Cathy...I know how much she makes you smile! And then, of course, remembering some of my own fond memories of us, which make me smile. So, I hope you can stop for a moment, think of some fun times that you smile (I'll give you one...popping out of the back seat/trunk of the car and scaring me to death with happiness) and other things...and hope that the happy moments of your birthday spill over into this new month as well. Happy Birthday, my friend.

Boquinha said...

Thanks, Kara! That is one of my favorite memories with you, since it's one where you could not even CONTAIN your excitement (and maybe a little bit of fear? I did scare the crud out of you). I have a really cute picture of you, me, Cathy, Athena, and others BUSTING UP laughing on a couch someplace. I didn't post it for some other reasons, but it made me smile, too. I miss you. Thanks for the birthday wishes. When will you be in PA again?