Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy Birthday to Me!

My birthday did not go how I originally wanted, but it ended up being even better. I wanted to spend my day with my favorite people, food, and places, and that's exactly what I did.

We planned to take a family hike in the morning, but it was pouring. We took advantage of a gift card we were given to Monkey Joe's. Thankfully there was a Family Dollar right next door because we forgot don't own socks and had to run in and buy some. Jackson had a blast, as expected. We weren't sure how much the trio would be able to participate. Amelia surprised us by climbing the tallest inflatables right behind Jackson, and sliding down completely on her own. Maddie and James were less skilled in climbing and spent more time jumping on the inflatable trampoline and playing in the toddler areas. Maddie left crying because the Monkey Joe mascot kept following us.

After an exhausting morning of jumping, Jackson and I headed to Gastonia for the traditional birthday lunch with my sisters. After eating my requested Chinese take-out, my sisters and I went for a hike in the woods behind our childhood home. We were fortunate to grow up on a very large plot of land and had the freedom to explore trails, creeks, boulders, etc. We might be a bit more cautious now while crossing rotted logs and large rocks, but our sense of adventure is still there.

The final leg of the birthday tour was spent with Jesse's side of the family. My brother-in-law and I have birthdays two days (and four years) apart. We celebrated together with a delicious meal of grilled meat and veggies, and an ornately decorated cake. Maddie enjoyed eating her PaPa's ribs and chicken legs. James made his rounds between all the family members, begging for cake. Amelia's face lit up every five seconds when she saw "doggy", "meow cat", or "baby". Jackson was inseparable with his cousin. All the kids ran around and chased the neighbor's chickens. It's never a dull moment!

I've been psyching myself up trying to think of a worthy goal to accomplish this upcoming year. I am leaning towards a health goal but I'm not quite ready to declare a specific goal. My 29th year has the potential to be a big year. Next summer I will celebrate my 30th birthday while sending my first born to kindergarten. There's a very good chance I will also be sending my 3 potty trained preschoolers to daycare and returning to work.  I hope I spend this last year of my 20's becoming a stronger, healthier woman, wife, and mom, and that I don't take for granted the time I have with my family.

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