Thankyou all for the birthday wishes today.
Birthdays are funny when you get older.
A little less climactic than when you are younger.
No homemade Mickey Mouse pancakes with candles in the place of Mickey’s eyes.
No after-school birthday party at the roller rink or Friday all-nighter sleepover (games of Truth or Dare, toilet papering the cute boys’ house you like, and green face masks included of course!).
No “many more, until your out the door, on channel 4,” sing-a-longs.
Birthday party hats and kazoos.
Do you have any favorite memories from birthdays when you were a kid?
I have way too many!
My 4th birthday, I wore my yellow Belle dress (a la “Beauty & the Beast”) and had a “pretend party”–playing princess, dress-up and tea parties.
My 10th birthday was, of course, a sleepover. My parents took my friends and me to a local beauty school salon to get our first manicures, followed by a night of “Girl Talk” and “Dream Phone” board games, watching “The Babysitters Club” VHS while eating popcorn, and giggling until all hours of the night.
My 12th birthday was the “talk of the town.” I hosted about 30-40 of my “closest” 6th grade friends for a city wide video scavenger hunt (long before GoPro and the iPhone were a big deal). Several of my friends’ parents volunteered to drive, and we divided up into teams of 5-6, conquering a laundry list of silly to-dos (from serenading a couple in a restaurant with the “L-O-V-E” song, to asking for a random person’s phone number, to dressing up in camouflage in Wal-Mart).
This party was closely followed by my 13th birthday party-a dance party…in zebra striped pants! My best friend Rachel and I decided to celebrate our birthdays together, and also decided to wear matching zebra pants (long live the animal print!).
My sweet 16th birthday was a total surprise. A stretch SUV limo pulled up to my house on a Saturday night to whisk myself and about 10 girl friends to the quaint town of Hot Springs about an hour away where we had dinner on the lake at Fisherman’s Wharf.
From there…the parties and celebrations began to stick out a little bit less and less.
Yet, while birthdays area bit less climactic than say, ages 3 or 4 to 21, there is still something special about the day that is “your day.”
I woke up with a bit more “spring in my step,” and a tad bit of enthusiasm that today was a bit different than most.
Today was my birthday, gosh darn it–and Julia Roberts’ birthday too for that matter (I used to think I was meant to be an actress as a kid because of this fact)…so today was a bit different than most.
Boy was I right…was it different—tossed in with a few unforeseen curveballs that were wonderful reassurances that:
“Yes, you ARE an adult now. 27-years-old, thankyou very much.”
Exhibit A: Texas Driver’s License & Registration.
My Driver’s License—from Arkansas—officially expired today; and I needed to get a new one today in order to refrain from having to re-take my driving tests that I took back when I was 16. Not tomorrow, not next week; it had to be done today.
Realizing this over the weekend, I had my parents overnight my birth certificate so I could have my “official documentation” for my new ID and I showed up to the DPS (driver’s license) at opening time: 8 a.m. sharp, to get my place in line…only to find about 12 others before me who did the same.
As I clarified with the front desk lady that I needed a new Texas license because my out of state license was officially expired, she informed me of some new news—“You need to register your vehicle in Texas first before we will give you a license.”
New lesson #1 learned: Sometimes things happen in life that you don’t plan or prepare for. Check, check.
So off to the Vehicle Registration office I was.
After waiting about 20-minutes in the lobby, number B211 was called to take her place at desk number 13, and as I proceeded to get this step out of the way, the worker informed me that in order to get a new vehicle registered, I would first have to get it inspected.
New lesson #2 learned: Sometimes the ‘rules’ or step-by-step things you need to do are not clearly spelled out, and you find out the ‘hard way.’ Check, check.
Off to the Firestone down the street I was next.
By this point, already weary, I walked inside and the technician asked, “Good morning mam, how can I help you?”
I informed him of the inspection I needed for my registration, and he told me, “Great we can do that, but first we need to verify your insurance coverage here in the state of Texas. Call up your insurance and have them fax it to us.”
I called them up, only to, of course get an automated operator recording. Minutes later–a voice! And still minutes later, the fax of my documents never went through…I had to call again. About 30-minutes later, the Firestone people could finally take my keys to begin “inspecting” my vehicle.
New lesson # 3 learned: No one else can do it for you-you often times have to do things for yourself. Check…check.
Man oh man.
About four hours total later, what I thought was going to be a walk-in, sit-down, take-your-picture, 30-minute errand turned out to be a “grown-up moment” morning.
And no one could do it for me or get me out of it, but me—today.
While I was at Firestone as well, they discovered my “rack & pinion” on my steering gear was leaking, and needed to be replaced for (gulp) 1K—a pretty penny.
Exhibit B: Another grown-up moment.
True. Birthdays are quite different when you are older. And unlike life as a kid and teen, even early 20’s, when you are a “grown up”, birthdays can easily feel like just another day.
While today was another day—true, and also a day full of lessons learned and grown up errands run…today was still a great day!
Three people thought I was turning 22 or 23; I also got 19; (do I look that young?!).
I made a special birthday shopping expedition to mi favorito store: Lululemon (fall clothes anyone?).
The sun was shining a beautiful 88-degrees.
Those nearest and dearest to me sent me a little birthday wish, call or text—reminding me how blessed I am to know some amazing, amazing people.
I shared a simple dinner and catch-up with a couple of my closest friends.
And, I am more inspired than EVER that this year is going to be my best year yet.
Check out this statistic I received in an e-mail today:
Happy birthday! Statistics show that people who have the most, live the longest.
It took a moment for that to register with me.
The coming of age is wonderful!
More birthdays = more days full of opportunity and life to live out the passions, talents, skills and dreams we have been given.
Living for today.
Check out the birthday cupcakes I am making: “Paleo Carrot Cake Cupcakes”
Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Coconut Butter “Frosting”
1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling on top
2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1 ripe banana, mashed
2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey (optional)
1 1/2 cups carrots, grated
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
Coconut butter, to spread on top
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Line muffin pan with paper liners.
In a bowl, combine almond flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon.
In a separate bowl, combine eggs, oil, banana, and maple syrup.
Stir carrots and pecans into wet ingredients.
Stir wet ingredients into dry.
Scoop a ¼ cup batter into paper lined muffin pan and sprinkle with cinnamon.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool 5 to 10 minutes on wire rack.
Spread each “cake” with Coconut Butter. (http://home/laurynlax/public_html.amazon.com/Artisana-100-Organic-Coconut-Butter/dp/B000WV153I) -can find at Whole Foods or Central Market