Monday, October 13, 2008

My Birthday

So, a week and a half ago I turned 34. I don't mind saying it because my age has never really bothered me. Maybe it will one day, but right now I'm just thankful to be alive and healthy. It does sound weird to me though - 34. It sounds older than I feel - at least most days! Does that make sense to anyone else but me?

Anyway, this year I got a really great gift. One of my oldest and best friends - not in age, but in number of years I've known her - came to see me!


Having lived in Seattle less than 5 months, it was a true gift to spend time with someone I have a history with. And what a history we have! We grew up living 2 blocks from each other and have done so much together over the years.... walked to school, rode bikes all over our neighborhood, went to church, had sleepovers, watched a lot of Alfred Hitchcock, old musicals, and shared a crush on Gilbert Blythe from Anne of Green Gables for awhile :) .... We've been in each others' weddings and walked through the ups and downs of life together, despite the many miles that have been between us for the past 15 years.

And now we can say we've decorated a house in Seattle together! Tara has always had a gift for making things beautiful and is now a very talented decorator. When I told her we'd be moving to Seattle, one of the first things she said was, "I want to come up and help you put your house together." And that she did in such an extraordinary way. I felt like I was on one of those home makeover shows. Although she had never been to Seattle before, instead of seeing the sights, we spent 3 days unpacking more boxes, pulling out my own stuff to use in fun ways I wouldn't have thought about, doing some shopping, painting, organizing, hanging curtains..... And in the process my lifeless house was turned into a warm and inviting home that I enjoy living in, with little expense, which is the best part! (I'll show some house pics in another post for you curious ones!) And that was my b-day gift - one of the best ever!

We did take some time out to go out on the town to celebrate too. Dale found an awesome restaurant, called Pasta Freska in downtown Seattle on Lake Union. Here's the fam....

This is one of the most unique and fun restaurants I've ever been to. The owner/master chef greets you when you arrive as if you've just come over to his house for dinner. He walks around constantly interacting with the guests, including having fun w/ the kids. Here he is with Hannah.

There are no menus. He simply asks you if there is anything you don't like or can't eat and then the culinary adventure begins! Throughout the evening cooks come out of the kitchen to deliver a variety of food. We had an assortment of fried eggplant w/ cheese, the best spaghetti and meatballs I've ever tasted, chicken marsala, stuffed chicken, salmon, prawn.... It sounds like a lot, but they were small portions just handed out here and there, so you got a good taste of everything. It was amazing! And the price is not what you'd think it would be!

And then there's dessert. A large plate of 4 different types of dessert was set in front of us and each of us sampled it all. The funniest part of the whole night was Kaitlyn's reaction. She reached for the plate with both hands shouting "happy, happy, happy!" As if the essence of "happy" was on that plate! :)


Brandy said...

A belated Happy Birthday! And what an absolutely wonderful gift. I can totally relate to your emotions. (All I want for Christmas AND my birthday AND Mother's Day AND nniversary AND any other gift-giving occasion is a visit from my family.)

Kaitlyn's reaction to the dessert reminds me of when my daughter was around 3 years old and we were at a "fancy" dinner at the parents' of friends. Our hostess lit the candles on the dinner table and Tory started singing "Happy Birthday"! We all cracked up.

Hope you are settling in better. And I truly pray that the homesickness is abating. That would give me hope.

Love you.

PS "Family" visits DO include you all, you know.

Tricia Hicks said...

I can't wait to see the house, and absolutely love the expression on Kaitlyn's face!

dan+amy said...

What a precious blessing and sweet, sweet gift to have an old friend spend time with you in your new stomping ground. AND sweeter still that you and Tara were able to make your house feel more like home! Moves are always a little easier once your house begins to feel like home! Goodness, your blog has made me awfully teary-eyed today! I'm just touched to read of God's goodness and His faithfulness to give us what we need when we need it. I sure do wish I could hug you right now! I'm praying for you and Dale and the girls. I'm excited to see how God continues to work in and through you for your good and His glory.