My birthday was just a few days ago, and it’s hard to believe I’m already 26! Time really does fly; when did I get to be so close to 30?! I moved to Washington DC when I was 22, so it really does seem a little surreal that I’ve just celebrated my fourth birthday in our nation’s capital. Looking back over these last couple of years in DC, I think my ‘adult’ life has really blossomed into something to be proud of. I may not be married (or even engaged!) like most 26 year olds (in the South- not in DC), but I’m quite happy with where I’ve ended up on my 26th birthday. My life is full of happiness & I feel incredibly blessed.
So last weekend, two of my best friends from UNC, Jenny & Christine, were coming into town for a weekend visit. We’d had this weekend planned since early January, and it wasn’t even a birthday related trip. As you know about me, I’m a huge planner… but I refrained for the weekend & made myself be spontaneous with their trip. I guess this worked into their plans quite well, because I didn’t suspect a thing or ask any questions. Saturday morning, five minutes after Jenny arrived (as planned), my doorbell rang. I told Jenny that I never answer the door at our house, but she insisted I do. To my complete and utter surprise, all eight of my very best friends from UNC were standing on my doorstep. Seriously, wow.
I’ve truly never been more shocked in my life- nor had I ever been legitimately speechless! Screaming, squealing, and a whole lot of “ohhh my gosh”es ensued. I was so humbled and touched that each of these girls came to DC for my birthday – they are so busy with work or grad school, and many of them flew into town. Their surprise was so unexpected and over-the-top… and incredible. I always, always feel so loved by this group of women, but this surprise was perfect and I’m so thankful. Then, to top it off, they told me I had five minutes to pack my bag. What?! Truth be told, I’ve always wanted to have this happen! We ended up in a timeshare suite in Old Town Alexandria, one of my favorite parts of the city.
These ladies lavished love on me the rest of the weekend, and our precious time together was so special. One of my favorite moments of the weekend was all nine of us piled onto the pullout couch, curled up and just talking life together. These women inspire me to be better – to be more intentional, to make long-distance friendships happen, to be more open, and to love more. We’ve been best friends for eight years now (how has it been that long since freshman year of college?!), and I definitely know that we have decades more to go. These are quality friends- the ones who are there no matter what. It’s hard to get us all together, and I can’t believe they successfully pulled off the surprise after a few months of planning it! Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to Jenny, Christine, Lindsey, Ashley, JCo, Jennifer, Christy, Brittany, & Laura (our long-lost Argentinian!). Loads of love!
My family and my DC-family (aka my friends here) also were so wonderful to me! My sweet, sweet sister visited me a few weeks ago (she had her huge work event this past weekend) and, as always, showed me so much love. How blessed am I that my very best friend is also my sister? And my fabulous Momma & Daddy sang to me & sent me lovely gifts (though the first gift I opened was a mattress pad.. yep, I’m definitely an adult). I have an amazing, supportive, and loving family!
My DC friends threw me a cute “stationery” party since they know how much I love stationery, gorgeous paper goods, and handwritten notes. I loved the theme, and my stationery box is now overflowing! I also got to spend my actual birthday out in the Virginia mountains doing one of my all-time favorite activities: wine tastings at a vineyard! There’s not much better than sipping quality red wine & eating cheese and other appetizers while surrounded with many of your dearest friends while the snow flurries outside in the mountain air. It was a fabulous birthday, start to finish!
Thank you, thank you, thank you to all – near and far – who celebrated life with me. I am so thankful for where I am today & the people that I share life with!