The First Man in My Life

Today is a great day in the B (and, of course, H) household.  Today, 52 years ago, the first man in my life started a life of his own.  Today, my dad turns 52! 

B and I got together with my parents and my grandmother to celebrate with a picnic on a local hill that overlooks the nearby mountain ranges.  Absolutely gorgeous.  What is even better is the man we celebrated today.  My dad has always been my hero, even though I haven’t always thought about it that way.  He has taught me how to be strong in my convictions, not be afraid to go against popular belief, and hold my own when it comes to getting quality service, especially when it comes to cars.  Yes, I am a girl, and no, that doesn’t mean I should be taken advantage of because I supposedly know nothing about cars.  During wedding planning, he wanted to be a part of anything I asked of him, and he always made sure that B had a say in the decisions we were making (he always did).The man made dozens of crepes at my bridal shower.  He has tried hard to understand field hockey and all of its rules and whistles.  He let my sister and I put his hair in pigtails.  He wrestled with us and didn’t back down just because “we were girls.”  He fixed our Barbies by making them wooden prosthetic arms, and when prosthetic parts didn’t work, he made them wheelchairs.  He’s been on our side, and while we didn’t always see eye to eye on topics, we can agree to disagree.He’s the best dad, and I am so lucky to have him as my dad.  Happy birthday, Dad!  Here’s to another 52 years!  I love you!

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Back on Track

Right, where were we?  Ah, right before my birthday with a pre-birthday Goodwill haul.  B is so good at planning birthday dates, and that one was an excellent one to be sure.  My actual birthday was a bit chilly, and, dare I say, a bit less fun.  Thanks to hormones and some untimely not-so-kind words, I was upset, and nothing seemed to go right.  People were too cold at the baseball game.  The restaurant I picked didn’t suit everyone.  I ended up crying in front of everyone and feeling stupid.  It was not the best birthday.  There were, however, some excellent highlights, like seeing these people:

and getting my new baby, a sewing machine!  B and my parents had pooled their birthday funds and purchased an AWESOME sewing machine for me!  I need to take a class to get myself started, but I cannot wait to start creating!

I also made a stop by Goodwill to use my birthday 25% discount with my Goodwill card.  I only ended up picking up a few necklaces because we were in a time crunch to get to the baseball game, but it was kind of fun to tell the cashier it was my birthday.  Yes, I am one of those people who loves to tell others that it’s her birthday.  I have a countdown starting April 1.  B is well aware of when my birthday is, and there is little opportunity for him to forget when my birthday is because I refuse to stop reminding him.  I wouldn’t say I nag, per se, I just like to get excited about events.  I had a day-by-day countdown for our wedding.  I keep countdowns for trips or when people come to visit (and I also post them on those people’s Facebook walls for good measure).  I just like getting enthusiastic!  All of you Debbie Downers can exit here.

But fear not!  Even with my blah birthday, I am bound and determined to make year 26 pretty darn great.  And you know what?  So far, it hasn’t treated me too badly.  I have, after all, done a bit of traveling…

But those are all stories for another day!

Have a wonderful (hopefully less humid) week, everyone!

One Week to 26

My twenty-sixth birthday is officially in one week.  Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

If you cannot tell, I love birthdays.  LOVE them.  I don’t care how old I am getting, they are fun to celebrate, hang out with friends and family, and eat some delicious dessert.  Seriously, it’s just a number.  I certainly don’t look like I’m turning 26 (thanks for making me realize that one again, little seventh grader the other day who told me I wasn’t old enough to even think about being married), so there is no way I have to act like it… outside of work.

Last year, I started a goal list of 30 things I want to do before I’m 30.  I have been crossing them off as I achieve them, and I have to say, I think I am doing pretty well.

Here is what I have so far and what I have already accomplished in the past year:

1.  Go to Europe at least once.

2.  Take a photography class.

3.  Reread all of the Harry Potter books again.  – In progress with my literacy class

4.  Learn enough Spanish to have a conversation.

5.  Feel comfortable in my own skin (which means working hard to tone everything up).

6.  Pay off most of my student loans (have no more than $5000 left).  (DONE! 9/21/11)

7.  Get a pet (cat or dog, but it has to be at a time when we feel like we aren’t cheating on our pets who live with our parents).

8.  Have someone buy a piece of my photography. (Christmas photo shoot, 12/18/11)

9.  Enter a cooking or baking competition.

10.  Start another Master’s degree.

11.  Take a cooking class (preferably with B).

12.  Move to another state (and live to tell the tale).

13.  See the Eiffel Tower in person.

14.  Live in a house/apartment where I can paint the walls (we’ll see if this happens).

15.  Run (and actually run) a 5k or the Four of the Fourth (a local race B and I do every year) – I will be on June 1!

16.  Be someone’s role model.

17.  Be in another one of my friends’ weddings. (Bestie C’s Wedding 8/19/11, but I wouldn’t mind more!)

18.  Take someone’s wedding-related pictures (and kick butt at it). (Friend K’s boudoir shoot, 4/12)

19.  Sew a piece of clothing for myself.  (Envelope clutch, achieved 4/18/12)

20.  See a volcano.  (Achieved 7/11)

21.  Learn to do a dive.

22.  Try a type of ethnic food I have never had before (like Ethiopian). (Middle Eastern, achieved 4/19/12)

23.  Cook a turkey (correctly!)

24.  Celebrate our five year anniversary with our family and friends.

25.  Confidently wear a bikini.

26.  Start seriously thinking about having some little chicklettes.

27. Grow my hair out and donate it to Beautiful Lengths at least one more time. – In progress, with even more meaning now that I have found out that my favorite mentor teacher from grad school is suffering from cancer.

28.  Apply to be on “Amazing Race” with B. (Application submitted 10/17/11!)

29.  Go to Cape Cod.

30.  Donate blood once a year. (I’m trying, but of all three times I have tried, I have failed.)  – Okay, this one is a total dud.  I have tried three times, and each time, ALL of the nurses have tried and failed to get my veins.  I turned into a human pin cushion.  So I am changing this goal to read at least twelve books before turning 30.  There are no needles involved in that one.

There are a couple more that are close to being done, but I don’t quite want to talk about them yet.  No, it’s not the baby one.  Sorry Moms.

What do you want to do before you turn the next “big” age?  Should I add anything to my list?