April 28, 2016

My 40th Birthday!

So...it was bound to happen :) The time has come for me to leave my 30s and enter my 40s...and I am totally fine with that! Age is just a number, and from everything I've heard, everyone really enjoys their 40s. So let the fun begin!

The plan was to do my birthday dinner on Friday at Brick Oven Pizza, my fave -- only I forgot to mention it to Mimi and so when we arrived home from work to pick her up, she was in her pajamas...whoops! Communication is the key to life! :) So, Chris and I just headed out to a normal dinner, and we decided to do birthday dinner on Saturday evening. Chris and I went to Miguels and had a yummy meal together. Then we decided to go to the driving range on a whim and that was a ton of fun! I'll post more on that later...

Saturday, I prepped a lot of vacation blog posts for the upcoming week, and then we all spent some relaxing time out by the pool! It isn't exactly warm yet, but we had our feet in and it is getting warmer! Soon! We also put the dogs in for the first time! More on that later too!

Saturday evening, the three of us enjoyed my birthday dinner at Brick Oven and it was yum yum yum!!!! Then we headed home and I was surprised by a visit from our friends RosaLee and Zack...they brought me a batch of homemade cinnamon rolls that are to die for! It was so very thoughtful of them!

Sunday, my actual birthday, we woke up and Chris prepared breakfast for me! A yummy cinnamon roll, a cup of tea, a beautiful rose from our garden, and a card with an Amazon gift card! So sweet! He even played with my hair a bit, which I love! After breakfast, I was told that I needed to get all of my laundry and grocery shopping done by 1:30 because the rest of the day was booked. Hmmm...ok....I got everything done that I could, and then we got ready. Chris told me that I needed to dress "super cute"...and that he was going to match me! Then we got in the car and drove, pulling up a bit later to an unknown church. Then I saw our friend Kelly G...he is an amazing photographer and I knew then that we were going to do a photo shoot to commemorate my 40th!! Yippie!!!

Kelly did a great job and I can't wait to see what he came up with!! He sent us one preview photo, and that is below -- it is so gorgeous, love it!!! Once we wrapped up our shoot, we headed home. As we turned the corner to our house, there was a group of people holding balloons, standing in our front yard!!! Lots of my sweet friends!

Chris let me out of the car and I went to hug everyone! And then they all let their balloons go and they flew off...just like my youth ha ha!! We went inside, and it was beautifully decorated! My bestie Kim and Kim Kent planned a beautiful party for me with so many wonderful details and a lot of delicious food!

Attendees: Kim, Gary, and Kelsey; Kyle and Kelsey; Shaylee and Austin; Kathy; Nadene; Kim K.; Shelby and Taylor; Kiki and Blaise; Mimi; Chris!

Food: Brick Oven Pizza (ha!!); salad; heart shaped brownies; lots of different chips/dips; lots of different cookies; queso; yogurt pretzels; tea and lemonade and drinks! And ice cream cake!! I am probably missing some things, but I was so excited I barely ate. Now I wish I had had one of those heart shaped brownies and some queso!!!

Gifts: Two pair of earrings and a special charm bracelet; photo shoot with Kelly G; Willow Creek angel; home decorations, including a handmade sign by Shaylee; gift cards; more Pioneer Woman dishes and salt/pepper shakers; a journal; Baileys; and a handmade book of 40 Notes from 40ish Friends that Kim made! I'll do a whole post next about what Chris' gift was!!!

Decorations: A huge 4-0 made out of tissue paper flowers. A "40 Rocks" Pop Rocks candy bouquet. Turquoise gerber daisy bouquets. Huge tissue paper flowers. A garland of little 40s around our light fixture. A big turquoise K for everyone to sign. Napkins with Happy Birthday stamped on them. And a burlap garland that said Happy 40th Birthday! Everything was just perfect and so creative!!!

We ate and sat outside around the pool and laughed and talked and opened gifts and had ice cream cake! It was a really fun evening with some really fun, awesome friends! I am one very blessed girl! Sometimes, in all honestly, I feel like I am much too blessed! Life is good! I am not entirely fond of being the center of attention, so I was a little stressed about it all at first...when an event is "for you" you have to be sure to make the rounds and give everyone equal time, etc. You're the guest of honor!! I much prefer entertaining when that is not the case...but it was better than I expected ha!

Thank you to all the wonderful people in my life! I have so many! It doesn't seem fair! :)

A few 40th birthday portraits
I think Mr. Baber is pretty funny sometimes :)
Me and my wonderful hubby
Me with the Shanans and the delicious cinnamon rolls!! Mmm!
A preview of our fun photo shoot with Kelly G.!! Can't wait to see the rest!!
The chalkboard at work, all about moi!
After our photo shoot, we came around the corner and this is what I saw!
Greeting everyone when we arrived!
Love this awesome, beautiful banner!
Me and my birthday crown, thanks Mom!!
This amazing book is full of so many touching, loving words!
The handmade 40 made of tissue paper flowers!

What a wonderful, heartwarming day!! 40 is off to an amazing start thanks to these incredible people!! Thank you everyone for loving me so well!!!!

April 27, 2016

Cancun Post #7

4-16-16 Saturday

The day for leaving -- we slept in a little bit, then had a leisurely breakfast at the buffet. Afterwards we went back to the room and packed up our stuff...then went to check out and have our all-inclusive wrist bands cut off :( We enjoyed a final ice cream from the amazing ice cream shop -- and then boarded the bus for the airport. From there it was a long day of travel -- lots of lines to get through -- security, customs, etc. The flight went well, no problems. And then we packed up Neeley and Zack into our truck and started our journey home! We stopped at Five Guys for American burgers (and Zack treated us!!). Back to home and back to our pups! They were so excited to see us!!!

We truly enjoyed our wonderful week at this gorgeous resort! We are blessed!

A final swing in the hammock!
A last selfie from our porch
This is the ice cream/coffee/crepe shop that was right inside the lobby --
we had to pass it multiple time a day and it was hard to resist!
This strawberry ice cream with strawberry/chocolate coating was SO DELICIOUS!!!
These are our pouty faces...we don't want to leave!

April 26, 2016

Cancun Post #6

I'm working on a post about my 40th birthday!! In the meantime, we will finish out with two more posts about our Cancun trip!!

4-15-16 Friday

Friday morning began with a solo run for Chris...Kiki texted early to say he was sleeping in :) After Chris got back, we headed for breakfast and then we were back to the pool...our last full day in paradise.

Our group decided to head back to Los Tacos for a yummy lunch! When we got back, some of our people tried to the Flow Rider, which is like surfing -- that was pretty funny to watch! :) Then it was back to the pool!

We got cleaned up and headed to the FDLIC Awards Dinner -- the buffet was pretty tasty, and they presented the sales awards and showed a video about the mission trip. Aftewards, we had a few drinks out by the pool with Jeremy and Kayla...then it was off to bed!

Los Tacos
Me and Kelsey
Chris and Neeley
Mr. Neeley showing me how many mimosas he had enjoyed
Blaise, Jessica, me, Kelsey, and our new friend Roberta from MN
Me and Jessica
Chris and Kiki

April 25, 2016

Cancun Post #5

4-14-16 Thursday

On Thursday of Cancun, a lot of our trip attendees participated in a Mission Trip -- so the resort was quieter than normal. Chris and I decided to not participate this year, since we did the last one...wanted to allow some others who weren't able to last time to get the chance...

We spent our day eating, drinking, and laying by the pool...just another day in paradise! We also decided to play put put at the resort with our group -- that was a lot of fun, but oh my it was so so so hot! There was no shade at the put put course, and no breeze. We broke into two groups of four, and Kyle won for our group and Jeremy won for the other. We were blessed by a golf cart driver offering us a shuttle ride back to the main lobby area, whew!

We headed back to the room to relax a little before dinner, and Chris ordered a pre-dinner from room service :) Cheese sticks, chicken fingers, pizza and mac and cheese! Then we headed to meet our group for dinner at Momo, the japanese hibachi. What a fun evening! We had sushi and sashimi, and fried rice and delicious main dishes of choice! Our cook put on quite a show, and we really enjoyed our evening. we had fried ice cream, which was not as good as we had expected -- it was fried in tempura which was odd with the ice cream! So, afterwards, we stopped at the ice cream shop and had some of that yumminess! Then we grabbed some drinks and sat outside by the pool, with our group of friends. Everyone was a bit wiped out from a fun week, so we all turned in early...

Loved this bird cage/chandelier display at Momo
The crepe maker was so fun! He was very good at his job and made me laugh!

April 24, 2016

Cancun Post #4

4-13-16 Wednesday

On this day in Cancun, Chris got up early again to run -- but this time, he ran with Kiki and Allison! Allison is in training for a half marathon, and they had fun running her speed to support her! I got up early as well, and walked the resort for about an hour -- it was HOT!! I took a lot of photos along the way and was able to see a lot of the resort -- such a beautiful place! I stumbled across a Meditation Garden that was shaded and cool...and it even had a miniature Mayan ruin! When I got back to the room, I was drenched in sweat and my face was beet red! Whew!

Afterwards we went to the breakfast buffet with Kelsey/Kyle/Blaise/Kiki and ate some more yummy food! Then we moved on to a day by the pool with the boys playing with a ball and the girls floating on a raft. We also spent lots of time under the pool bridge in the shade! I also spent a little time relaxing in the hammock!

For dinner, our group took the resort shuttle and went to the other resort to Los Tacos, which was one of the best experiences of our trip! When we arrived, we weren't sure we were in the correct place because there was no one else there...but they assured us we were and they took amazing care of us! The food was incredible -- my fish tacos were fantastic! There were nachos and dessert and wonderful conversation...

After dinner, we headed back to our resort and had a night cap in the Sky Bar...and then we left the bar and the boys decided to kick off their flip flops and race down the marble floored hallway, in a foot race! Silly boys!

On the way back to our room, Chris and I sat on the beach wall and listened to the waves roll in and out. Another fantastic day!

Allison, Chris and Kiki -- the runners
My view, from the shade of a perfect umbrella
The Babers on their way to dinner
Our group waiting for the resort shuttle, heading to Los Tacos
Discarded flip flops :)