Archive for the ‘Birthday’ Category

Jane got this photo of me before my birthday party started…

What is it about the warm weather that has me craving a beer? Maybe because I can’t drink one!?

But I am craving a Coor’s Light like you CANNOT imagine!

A nice, frosty, iced-cold Coor’s Light. With a big, greasy slice of pepperoni pizza.

OK. For the next two weeks, I’ll settle for an O’Doul’s and meat-less pizza slice (no indigestion)!

– Audrey


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My birthday was a great day. I relaxed. Spent time with my boys. Worked (which I love). And to ring in my 30th birthday night (in preparation for May 30th – SEX IN THE CITY MOVIE!) I rented the whole last season of Sex and the City to get myself (shall we say) reacquainted with the characters.

BUT! The celebrating was just about to begin…

On Saturday night my husband hosted a 30th birthday party for me at our house with all of our friends.

And get this… it was an ADULTS ONLY party!

It was so weird not having the kids running around, or at least… seeing them around the house. It was the first time in a long time that I got to have actual conversations with friends and really be able to mingle.

The night was wonderful! I had friends there from childhood. I had friends there from high school and college. And I had friends there that I have just come to know over the last 2 years. It was a perfect mix of friends… all of my “worlds” coming together.

Here are some photos of the evening…

(Matthew and me before the party! 🙂 – Thanks Mel!)

(The cake that I have had WAY TOO much of!)

(The food spread…)

(My friends Janice and Steph – who is holding her 6-week-old baby girl, Lauren!)

(My parents took the boys back to do cake with me!)

(And yes… I made some BIG wishes on those 30 candles!)

– Audrey

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When each of my grandchildren celebrates a birthday, I buy a special pair of pajamas (anything from dinosaurs to race cars and rockets, princesses to snow bunnies and flowers) and have them embroidered with the birthday date and year. I make absolutely sure that the pajamas are given on the actual birth-day, so the birthday child can wear them to bed that special night.

As you can imagine with 7 grandchildren, I have become best buds with the embroidery place in my town. When they see me coming, they say, “So it’s birthday time again!”

This got me thinking… why not celebrate Audrey’s special 30th birthday with her own embroidered t-shirt on this most wonderful day.

So my beautiful birthday girl… HAPPY 5-23-08 BIRTHDAY!

Even though you are now a Mommy of your own children, you will always be my little darling!

I love you!


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On turning 30…

Tomorrow I will be 30 years old.

30 years old.

I’ve never been one of those people who “dreads” certain ages. I have always embraced each birthday with a sense of excitement, contentment and gusto!

30 will be no different.

My 20’s have been good to me. 10 years of growing… learning… dreaming… reaching… loving and moving in a forward motion.

I met my husband at 20. Graduated from college at 21. Got married at 23. Had my first baby at 26. My next at 27. My next at 28. And conceived my next at 29.

I lived 7 of the past 10 years in New York City working for Donna Karan. I pursued a life-long dream to not only live in New York City, but “make it there”… just like Frank Sinatra sang. And I did, along with my husband. We were able to create a “perfect” little life for ourselves there. And it was wonderful.

I bought my first house in my 20’s. My first house. A place to call home and know that I won’t be handing in my keys at the end of my lease.

I wrote and published my first book, Preconception Plain & Simple. I started Pinks & Blues (soon-to-be named Mom Generations) with my mother and sister. And I’ve watched our business grow…

I have met more and more beautiful people. And have made more and more wonderful friends.

I have had the pleasure of getting to know my parents and grandmothers as an adult woman and mother. I have delighted in seeing my brothers become fathers. My sister meeting the love of her life. And my parents become grandparents.

I have lived. And I have loved in my 20’s.

I have my husband to thank for the deep love that I not only feel from him, but have for him.

And I never imagined 3 (almost 4) little men entering my life and changing it so profoundly.

Not all before I turned 30.

It’s quite amazing to me.

And so… as I embark on my 30’s tomorrow… I can’t help but think and smile about the next 10 years and what they will bring me.

Where will I be 10 years from now? Will there be more children? Will we still be living in this very home where I am typing away in at this very moment? Will the gray hairs eventually pop out? 🙂

This is the exciting part about life… and I’m excited and energized for the ride we call “our 30’s.”

– Audrey

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My Grandma had a Sixteen Candles moment this weekend for her birthday.

She woke up on Saturday morning to no birthday wishes whatsoever.

No calls or emails (yes, she emails!) from her children, grandchildren or siblings.

Nothing. No one to acknowledge the 83 years she has spent on this earth.

What’s worse, there was no Jake Ryan to pine after (my grandfather – her husband – passed away 33 years ago), no school dance with ’80s music to attend, and no crazy exchange student for comic relief.

Instead, my Grandma spent the day by herself, believing that everyone had just forgotten about her birthday. Or worse – didn’t care enough to call.

Then she woke up this morning and checked her email.

Lo and behold, there were emails from her sisters. An email from my Mom. Soon she received phone calls from me and Audrey and her friends.

We were all wishing her a Happy Birthday.

And then it hit her… her birthday wasn’t yesterday. It was today!

When we got together this afternoon at Mom and Dad’s house for a birthday cook-out, Grandma told us the story about how she thought everyone forgot her birthday.

She had gotten the date mixed up, and thought that Saturday was the 13th (her birthday), when Saturday was actually the 12th.

So on her actual 83rd birthday today, Grandma was able to celebrate with us, her loving family… and her favorite dessert, strawberry shortcake!

Happy Birthday, Grandma! Here’s to so, so many more… we won’t forget!

– Jane

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Yesterday we celebrated Benjamin’s 1st birthday.

When I arrived at Audrey’s house, family and friends were talking and laughing, gathering together around the food counter or in the living room or down in the basement.

Kids were running around the house in packs, planning kickball teams and donning their newly-made paper crowns.

There was excitement everywhere. And then I spotted the birthday boy.

Benjamin was clinging to my dad (his “Pop-up”) on the couch, while sitting on his lap. His big, round, blue eyes took everything around him in.

“Happy Birthday, Benja!” I exclaimed, giving him a big kiss on his rosy, just-asking-to-be-pinched cheek.

He gave me a little smile, but didn’t unclench his fingers from my dad’s shirt, and could barely keep his eyes from darting around, following every noise and movement he heard and saw.

He seemed to be thinking, “Why are all these people in my house, and more importantly, when are they leaving?”

It reminded me of one of Jerry Seinfeld’s stand-up routines, where once again, he was so spot-on with an observation about everyday life:

“To me, the thing about birthday parties is that the first birthday party you have and the last birthday party you have are actually quite similar. You know, you just kinda sit there…you’re the least excited person at the party. You don’t even really realize that there is a party. You don’t know what’s going on.

Both birthday parties, people have to kinda help you blow out the candles. You can’t do it…you don’t even know why you’re doing it. What is this ritual? What is going on?

It’s also the only two birthday parties where other people have to gather your friends together for you. Sometimes they’re not even your friends. They make the judgment. They bring ’em in, they sit ’em down, and they tell you, ‘These are your friends! Tell them thank you for coming to my birthday party.'”

Indeed, when it was time for us to all sing “Happy Birthday” to Benjamin, he glanced around with a look of horror at the two dozen or so people gathered around his high chair.

Our pitch was terribly off-key, but his quivering lower lip seemed to imply that that was the least of his worries.

When Benjamin’s eyes found my mom’s (his Grandma’s) face, he reached out to her hand, which seemed to calm him amidst the confusion.

“Grandma, I would rather be taking a nap right now,” he seemed to be telling her.

And as Audrey placed the cupcake with one lit candle in front of him, I couldn’t help but think that on any day other than his 1st birthday party, if Audrey were to hand him an object on fire, we would think she’s nuts. But on his 1st birthday, we just kind of expect him to rationalize the concept of a lit candle on a cupcake and know what to do.

My husband and I were among the last people to leave Audrey’s house at the end of the party. I saw Audrey look around at the empty pizza boxes, the bowls and cups and plates strewn about her kitchen and the new birthday gifts to put away.

But rather than looking like she was dreading getting her house back to normal, instead I saw a look of relief on her face. The party had gone off without a hitch. Everyone had a good time. And now the house was… quiet(er) again.

But no one had a look of relief as clear as Benjamin’s. I think for his next birthday, he’ll be more prepared.

And he’ll try to arrange his nap time accordingly.

– Jane

Cross-posted at New England Mamas

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Matt and I decided on our oldest son William’s 1st birthday that we wanted to start a yearly birthday tradition.

Something fun. Something easy. And something William would get a “kick out of” as he grew older.

We decided to take a photo of him every year on his birthday in the same XL shirt and watch him grow into it more and more each year.

We have been doing this every year with William on his birthday. With Alexander.

And now, with Benjamin!

For William we chose a Patrick Tillman Arizona Cardinals Football Jersey. William’s middle name is Tillman (in honor of Patrick Tillman), so we thought it would be very appropriate to see him in this special jersey every year.

For Alexander we chose a T-shirt from our dear friend who passed while fighting in Fallujah. We named Alexander Dimitri after our best friend Dimitri Gavriel… so we thought it would be very special to have one of Dimitri’s T-shirts as Alexander’s special birthday tee.

For Benjamin… we decided it would be all about the Steelers. (Yes, much to this Patriots fan’s chagrin!) My husband has been a life-long Steeler fan. And honestly, the first time I remember hearing the name Benjamin… and thinking to myself, “God… I love that name!” was when the Steelers won the Superbowl with Ben Roethlisberger as their quarterback.

So… Birthday Tradition for Benjamin, TAKE 1 –

Steeler BEN

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