10 Reasons Why I Had an Amazing Birthday:
10: I got to Skype with so many people including my dear friend Haley. She has been a part of my life since high school and our friendship has only gotten stronger over time, especially while I lived in Salt Lake. The term "glamorous" doesn't even begin to cover what our life is when we are together. Our outings usually consist of sweat pants, ice cream, and occasionally bras. She is one of the few people I can tell to control her child as I walk past her in target and not think I am serious. She understands my sense of humor while other people think I am being bitchy. She has been one of my biggest supporters for this chapter of my life, and even though half of our conversation happened in the bathroom, my birthday wouldn't be complete without her. She is most definitely my sista from another mista.
9. My amazing and dear friend, Ashley sent me an amazing (and super expensive) birthday package. The Chinese secretaries were all surprised that a friend would spend do much money to ship a package, to which I responded, "yeah, she is pretty much the best." Besides sending me a cute scarf and much needed church book, she sent me some food items I have been craving- my favorite: Mr. El Fudge!!! It used to be our go-to Friday night treat. I have really been missing them (and her!)
8. I was showered with love by the Chinese secretaries all day! One of my biggest weaknesses is that I don't feel like I have much to contribute to a relationship- meaning that I don't understand why people want to be my friend and often times I underestimate how many people appreciate my friendship. It was such an eye opener to see how many of the Chinese secretaries value my friendship and who remembered it was my birthday and gave me a gift wether it was a cake, a necklace, a sweet card, flowers, a cute bracelet, or nail polish.
7. I got to have a party in my morning class. I put my birthday on the calendar and told the kids all month that if they made good choices we would have a party. Luckily for me they made good choices and we got to enjoy an extra long break time complete with snacks brought by the kids and a musical interpretation of "Let it Go". Amy posed us for this picture, I love how candid it is- it truly captures everybody's personality!
6. Perhaps one of the best surprises that happened that morning was when Josh, Cassidy, and Heidi brought all their kids in to surprise me and sing happy birthday to me. I was totally not expecting to have 20ish little kids come and sing me happy birthday (and continue to wish me happy birthday clear into September!) There is nothing sweeter than the faces of little Asian kids wishing you a happy birthday! I wish I would have got a video but I was just so caught up in the moment that I forgot.
5. I couldn't think of a better way to start and end the day than by Skyping with a couple of handsome boys! I love hearing Emmit's raspy voice and I miss waking up to his handsome self every morning (more than that I miss dressing him in cute little plaid shirts and khaki pants!) I miss his cute little hands grabbing my face when he wants to talk to me and afternoon cuddles as we watch a movie. I miss having him help me get ready in the morning and him telling me to be quiet when I am singing. Even though Emmit was more fixated on the new kitty he was going to get, it was worth waking up at 6 am to hear his cute little raspy voice call me "my Tiff."
The second handsome guy I got to talk to happens to be one of my dear friends from college, Ryan. Even though we really struggled finding a time to talk I am so glad he was persistent because it was the best ending to an already great day.
4. I loved reading the birthday wishes on Facebook from my friends in all the chapters of my life. It is always such a great reminder at how many people have come into my life and how grateful I am for each and every one of them!
3. I got extra hugs from the babies in our afternoon class. I don't think there is anything better than a bunch of two year olds giving you lots of hugs - especially on your birthday!
2. I had one of the best surprise parties of all time! Seriously, I was speechless, and holding back tears. Thursday happens to be my language exchange night with Peggy, Cindy, Vickie, Holly, and Ib. Earlier in the week Peggy told me that the other secretaries and Ib wouldn't be able to go so it would just be the two of us, I didn't think anything of this as everybody had legitimate reasons why they couldn't come. Cindy even came up to me on Thursday, and in her broken English, told me she had to go home and couldn't come to language exchange that night.) I was sad Ib couldn't come but I always knew his family would come first.
So at 6 pm we headed to the restaurant making a pit stop at the mall so a Peggy could pick out my present (nail polish, of course). We got to the restaurant and Peggy was very specific about where we sat (next to a window)-I figured it was because she liked the booth and not the seats. I started to pick out what I wanted to eat while Peggy went out to her scooter to "grab her notebook" and call her husband. I thought the behavior a little bizarre (she never talks to her husband on Thursday nights) but I still didn't think anything of it because I figured they had something they needed to discuss. Well as she is talking to her husband/ordering our food, I am in lala land. The people across from me kept smiling and waving. I ignored them the first couple times, I acknowledged them the next time, and by the fourth or fifth time of them smiling and pointing I finally looked outside, only to be surprised by this:
I was literally speechless my heart was so full of love it felt like it was going to burst. I was amazed at the fact that I had NO CLUE that they were planning this. It was funny to hear Ib's rendition of the event, it turns out they all beat me to the restaurant and were literally 10 feet away when I walked in. The Chinese secretaries were about 15 minutes late because they stopped to get flowers(that was who Peggy kept calling), and once everyone got there they were on completely seperate pages on how to surprise me. All while I was sitting there as clueless as could be. It was such an amazing night filled with laughter, love, and friendship. I always want to remember that feeling of joy and love.
1. I was surrounded by so much love from people I have known for years to people I have just barley met. Words could never accurately describe how much love I had in my heart for those near and far who helped make this birthday do special. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to be surrounded by so many people who love me on several different continents.