As ya'll know, my weekend was jam packed with birthday fun and friends. All of my very best friends in the world traveled near and far to be able to kick off our year of 30th birthday celebrations. (Yes, I have the pleasure of being the oldest in our group.) We don't all get to be together very often, but when we do, as my husband can attest, we just chat and laugh, and pretty much don't pay attention to anyone else :). It's the best, and I'm so grateful they were all here to go above and beyond to make my weekend special.
My best girls!
On Friday, after getting the rest of my stupid cavities filled, I met my girlfriends Annie and Ashley for happy hour. Both of these gals were visiting from Nashville and Santa Monica, and I was so excited to kick off the weekend with them. My other best friends arrived from Iowa City later that evening, and we all enjoyed dinner at a delicious BYOB sushi place, complete with a cupcake the size of my head, before heading to the late night show at Second City.
The group at dinner!
Wall of famous hands at Second City.
If you ever come to Chicago, do yourself a solid and go see a show at Second City. They're consistently hilarious and this weekend's show didn't disappoint. After laughing our asses off for about 2 hours, we had a nightcap at a bar across the street. And then, because it was "only 1:30 in the morning," we decided we weren't ready for the party to end, so we bought a case of beer and came back to my house, drank unnecessary amounts of beer and pizza until wee hours of the morning (we were trying to make it to 4am when I officially turned 30), which resulted in massive hangovers for most, if not all of us, on Saturday.
But, a hangover can't keep me down, especially on my birthday, so we kicked off my 30th birthday with brunch and Bloody Mary's at a nearby watering hole. After that, we had friends over to watch the Iowa football game, except none of us girls watched it. Instead we sat outside chatting and enjoying a beautiful day (see note above about what happens when we get together).
My friend Kate went above and beyond, per usual, with personalized cupcakes, signs, a champagne glass and decorations for the party. My girlfriends gave me INSANELY generous gifts, include a ton of gorgeous Mary Kay makeup, perfume, a Hobo clutch and a Coach purse. To say nothing of the GORGEOUS sapphire and diamond ring that my husband bought for my 30-year-old right hand. Am I lucky or what?
Love love love.
Finally, it was time to head to my favorite wine bar for a small gathering of friends. When I walked in, I saw my mom's best friend, and low and behold, my mom and aunt Betsy turned around and SURPRISE! I was truly shocked, and because I've never been surprised like that, I immediately started crying. You see, none of my family was there because we are all going to Green Bay this weekend for a family celebration. Plus, my mom hadn't called me all day, and I missed them. But seeing her and my aunt was truly one of the most memorable moments of my weekend, and I'll never forget it.
The party was perfect, and I can't thank my husband enough for making it happen. It was all of my favorite people together in one room and I just couldn't have had a better time.
Although I always make fun of the fact that I don't have a lot of friends in Chicago, I found myself re-examining those claims this weekend. As I looked around my party on Saturday night, I was surrounded with friends I've had from all times of my life, from elementary school to junior high and high school to college and those friends I've made in my career and post-college. I felt really humbled and extremely lucky to have so many wonderful people in one room, and for the same reason, which was to celebrate me. To say I felt loved would be an understatement. So if you were there on Saturday, or sent me a happy birthday message or text message or phone call, please know how much I appreciated it.
Love all of these people!
That about sums it up, guys. Truly, it was one of the best birthdays I've had in a long time, and I am so excited for all of the things to come in these years!