A little background info...we have always tried to celebrate birthdays in our family. It might just be a casual gathering with cake & ice cream, but for the most part there's always some sort of celebration. And...since 9/11 when the SuperBowl was moved back one week, my birthday has normally fallen on or near SuperBowl Sunday. So, my family & close friends would gather together at my parents' house to celebrate watch the SuperBowl, while eating some yummy birthday cake, candles, singing & present opening being crammed in somewhere right before the National Anthem.
Last year, on my 29th birthday I informed my mom & husband that I DID NOT want to share my birthday with the SuperBowl seeing as my next birthday was the big 3-0. The weekend before my birthday I thought something might be going on, but the weekend came and went and NOTHING. Then throughout the week I thought maybe something was going on, we even had tickets to see West Side Story at our local theater and I thought those tickets might just have been a ploy to mask the plans that were going on behind the scenes, but NOTHING. Friday night was actually fairly open for us, but my parents were busy...maybe they had changed their plans?!? Still NOTHING.
And so, we still went to my parents' house for SuperBowl Sunday on February 3, and I was really kind of expecting some kind of cake or singing or candles...but again, NOTHING. The next day, on my actual birthday...my grandparents brought my birthday card filled with a little cash by our office & my aunt also dropped off a card & a cute little orchid plant. And surely a Monday night wasn't when a big party was being planned...I mean all my friends are teachers or coaches or have other lives with their own plans & Elyse is normally a 7:30-8:00 bedtime girl...which doesn't leave much time for a big party. Plus, Monday is Zumba night...which meant most of my girlfriends couldn't come!
Normally I get to pick the restaurant for my birthday dinner with my immediate family, but this year I just couldn't decide. Hubby & I had just eaten at a nice restaurant on Friday night, and I just wasn't feeling any of my typical favorites. Hubby & my mom both mentioned an Italian restaurant downtown...which it's good, but definitely not my favorite. However, they kept mentioning it so I had finally just given in. On our way to pick up Elyse after work, Hubby asked me what my favorite meal was in Springfield...to which I said...you know an Ultimate Sergio & a Mango margarita from Maria's (my favorite local Mexican restaurant) sounds pretty good! Nick says...well we can go there then. But Maria's isn't fancy...and birthday dinners are normally fancy.
My parents convinced me to open my presents from them before we headed home to change & we also went ahead and fed Elyse since we weren't planning on my meeting my brother & his wife for dinner until 6:30. We again had finally decided on the Italian restaurant Bruno's for dinner...which just so happens to be like 3 doors down from Maria's.
My dad parked the car (quite a long ways away now that I think about it) and we headed towards Bruno's. As we got to the door my mom says...well I don't see your brother & Millie...let's keep going. As we come to Maria's, I notice that the shades on their big side-room are pulled, but we walk to the front door...and mom says we should go in. As I walk into the room I could not have been more surprised.
Almost 60 of my closest friends & family were all seated, munching on chips, queso, & guacamole...all there to celebrate me. I was in shock. Personalized photo invitations had been sent out to everyone on my Christmas card list by Nick. The tables had all been decorated with help from my mom, aunt, & mother-in-law. A huge cake had been ordered decorated complete with pearls, in honor of my 30th. A photo book with a ridiculous amount of embarrassing photos had been created to use as a guest book. A table was filled with cards & gifts from all those in attendance. Pinatas had been purchased to keep with the Mexican theme. And my favorite meal was waiting for me when I arrived...not an Ultimate Sergio, but Fish Tacos which is another one of my favorites!
I knew that there was most likely some sort of party in the works...but this went above & beyond what I had ever expected. & Nick did it all--with a little bit of help from my mom & MIL.
And now...for a few pictures from my big night as a new 30 year old!
My wish of a non-SuperBowl birthday definitely came true!