Saturday, January 19, 2013

Birthday Weekend Extravaganza

Hubby ditched me for 10 days to go to Germany for a conference.

Over my birthday.

Luckily, he planned a fantastic birthday surprise to make up for it.  It's almost like he's romantic or something.

Thursday:  Before he left, I got to open my birthday card (my birthday wasn't until Sunday).  Inside the card were 4 different sheets of paper, labeled Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, one to open each day over my birthday weekend.  They were also expertly folded and taped shut, so, alas, there was no chance of peeking. Unless I cheated, which was tempting, but I didn't do.

Friday:  The best gift of the whole weekend.  A spa package appointment set up on my birthday for a massage, facial, and foot treatment.  Friday night I also got to hang out with some girlfriends for a night of pizza and wine, and even some baby-holding time.

Saturday:  Swedish Fish in the glove compartment. Saturday night was the best night of the whole weekend. Two of my girlfriends came over to hang out for a bit while I got ready, and then we met up with some more friends at one of my favorite restaurants in Madison, Eno Vino.  Then the same two friends and I went out afterwards for more drinks, and ended up having one of the best conversations ever for like 3+ hours.  It was awesome.  The best "church" always ends up happening at a bar, instead of in a building with a steeple on a Sunday. Funny how that works.

Sunday:  My birthday!  I got chocolates from my favorite chocolatier in Madison.   Sunday night I went to church (the non-bar kind) and had a bunch of people over for pizza and beer and to watch Downton Abbey.  I was kind of nervous, because you never know if people are actually as in to a show as you are, or if they just sort of kind of like it and have seen it once or twice before.  Thankfully everyone was as obsessed as I was, and there was no talking during the show, or someone might have gotten shived.

Monday:  Flowers delivered to me at work!

Tuesday:  I woke up all "what beautiful and fantastical surprise do I get to open this morning?"  And then life was all "NOTHING" because all of the festivities were over.  And then I didn't want to get out of bed. 
Disclaimer:  I never want to get out of bed in the morning.

But now Hubby is on his way home, and I get to go pick him up from the airport in just two short hours.  And hopefully there is another surprise waiting for me in his suitcase from Germany....

Monday, January 7, 2013

Weekend Happenings

Right now is my favorite time of the whole entire year to shop for clothes.  The stores go crazy with their post-Christmas sales, scrambling to turn over a lot of product to make room for bring in their spring lines.  This is totally and completely the reason that I have approximately 1,248,097 times more fall/winter clothes than spring/summer ones.  Also because I like fall/winter clothes more than spring/summer ones.  And that Christmas and my birthday are both in the winter.  So, anyway, it's most of the reason.

Hubby and I went to the mall on Friday night to celebrate these sales.  I refuse to go on the weekends (too busy/crazy/crowded), and will only go later at night or on a weekday, if I get the chance.  I scooped up the two skirts above and a gorgeous leopard-print silk top from J.Crew all for about $50.00.  Win.  One of my main requirements are that the clothes are something I can still wear now through the cooler part of the spring, (i.e. nothing too blinged out that screams "New Year's Eve" or "Christmas"), because I'm too impatient to purchase something that I can't wear for a whole entire year.  I also bought a sweater and flannel shirt from Target the weekend before, and boots ($30.00!) while we were still in Sioux City.  That's more goodness than I've purchased for myself in the previous three months combined.  I love it.

Besides that hubby and I mostly hung out and played our new obsession, Rummikub.  We played it on New Year's Eve at a friend's party and both immediately loved it - surprising for me since it's partly a numbers game.  

We both actually went to Target, separately, at different times, last Thursday, and both purchased the game to surprise the other....when I walked in the door with Rummikub in a Target bag in my hand and another one sitting on our kitchen table, I was definitely surprised...

Oh, and we also checked out the new Ale Asylum.  Very cool.  

Oh, and hockey is back!  So it was a good weekend.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Christmas and a Wedding

Happy 2013!

It's hard to believe that we are already back from our 9-day trip to the Twin Cities and Sioux City, and that my 11-day "vacation" ends with going back to work tomorrow.  Tomorrow.  These days are never long enough.

Christmas Eve we enjoyed Thanksgiving food.  Since dad had his quintuple bypass not long before Thanksgiving, he wasn't able to enjoy it this year.  So we celebrated it all over again.  But with Christmas dishes.

When I was younger, my favorite part about mom's Christmas china was the little teddy bear just waiting under the tree.  He's still my favorite part, actually.

We toasted with some cranberry mimosas (cranberry juice and champagne), which were simple and festive. And delicious.  And served in a gold-rimmed glass, which were collector's items in the '90's for about $2.99 from Arby's.  Yup, you read that right.  We don't want to get too classy, here.

Is this not the most beautiful plate of food you have ever seen?  Just looking at it sparks cravings that won't be satisfied for another 10 months...

After enjoying Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with my family, we headed off for Sioux City to spend time with Tyson's family.  This year we were able to double up on our fun for the trip, since one of Tyson's cousins got married the Saturday after Christmas.

 The church was beautiful since it was still decorated for Christmas, and was too perfect in coordinating with their red, white, and blue wedding (for her military husband).  

I got to help out by making the centerpieces for the reception.  To keep the budget low and everything simple, I filled different clear vases with babies breath.  So simple, but so pretty.  And perfect for a winter wedding, since the tiny white flowers reminded me of the snow outside.  The taller vases (I don't have any good photos of them) have the addition of some curly willow.  Then I tied on a heart with their initials ("e + a") around the vase with some string.  Simple, but still personal and elegant.

I feel like I should have some reflections on 2012, or large aspiring goals to write about for the new year, but I really don't.  2012 meant losing jobs, losing a cousin, starting a new job, planting the seeds for a new business, and my dad's surgery.  I'm mostly excited to put 2012 to bed.  But 2012 taught me the importance of rest, and free time, and taking time to do things I enjoy, simply because I enjoy them.  I feel like 2012 was my time of rest and taking a little bit of a break, and that now 2013 is calling me to get back out.  I'm not quite sure what I'm supposed to get out and actually do quite yet.  Right now that's just a minor detail.