Sunday, November 21, 2021

My 37th Birthday Weekend

This has been a very eventful weekend!  I celebrated my 37th birthday yesterday, but the celebration lasted most of the weekend!

Eliot and I started the celebration a bit early.  Friday morning, Harveys released their Mickey's Merry Christmas collection.  I logged in right at 11 am to treat myself to some new Harveys items.  I misbehaved a bit this release and bought two bags.  The all over print was really cute and festive.  Then, they also made a Mickey Mouse gingerbread bag.  Many Harveys fans have been asking for this for years, including me, so I had to get him!  (Isn't he cute?  Plus, today is National Gingerbread Cookie Day!)

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Friday night, Eliot brought home a Chicken Baja Bowl from Panera Bread.  He also brought home one of their delicious iced sugar cookies!  Before we went to bed, Eliot changed our Twinkly tree to pink, purple and yellow so it sparkles like my favorite Disney princess who celebrates her birthday in her movie!  (Rapunzel in Tangled.)

Saturday morning, we slept in a bit later than we probably should have, but Eliot and I had been up until about 2 am talking to his Mom on the phone.  After getting out of bed, we took care of a bit of business stuff.  We had a bunch of orders we needed to mail out.  After packaging and preparing those, Eliot took them to the post office. 

Meanwhile, I jumped into the shower and started to get ready.  We were already running later than we should have been, but I got my special birthday outfit ready.  I had set aside my new Mickey Balloon shirt, my comfy black leggings and my new colorful rainbow sweater to wear.  Then, I also grabbed my confetti toppers for my glasses (from Pair) and my new silver Mickey hoop earrings from BoxLunch.

By the time Eliot and I were ready, it was too late to make it up to Waterville before we'd have to turn around and drive back to Augusta, so we left our house and drove straight to Augusta to get a little bit of shopping in before dinner.

We went to TJ Maxx first and that place was a madhouse.  It was packed with people and I honestly felt a bit claustrophobic in their Christmas section.  They had a few fun Disney things, but I wasn't really that interested in them.  Once Eliot met me in there, we made a pretty quick rush to the exit after I showed him a few things.

After, we drove to Torrid so I could get the red plaid pants I've been wanting.  They had sold out online; then they were in stock again, and I saw that they were in stock in Augusta.  I figured I'd go there to buy them before they sold out again.  I browsed through the store with Eliot before I found them right at the front entrance.  They had my size and a cute outfit that matched.  I decided to just get the pants and we were out of there in about 10 minutes.

Eliot wanted to go to Eddie Bauer next door, so we went in there for a bit.  He found a few things he wanted to get, and after a quick call to his mother, he had a gift card to use.  (She had returned some stuff there and had a store credit.)  He got a new winter hat, a nice sweater, some pants and we both got matching thin long sleeved quarter zips in teal.  We love those for traveling!

At that point, Eliot and I had 45 minutes before we needed to meet everyone for dinner, so we went to Walmart.  It was pretty busy in there too.  We ran around the store checking a few things, and grabbing a few business supplies before checking out.

My Mom called right as we were pulling out of Walmart saying that they had just gotten to Texas Roadhouse.  We were one exit up from them, so we drove down to meet them.  And when we got there, I had a bad feeling.  It was so busy.  I went inside to check the wait time while Eliot went to find my parents, and it was 55 minutes.  We didn't have that much time to wait.

Discouraged, I walked over to greet my parents and told them we'd probably be eating at McDonald's because everywhere was going to be packed.  Thankfully, Eliot sprung to action to find other options.  The Applebee's wasn't far away, but I told him we better call before driving over.  After waiting a minute to two to speak to someone, Eliot found out that it was only about a 15 minute wait, so we all hopped back in our cars and headed over.  Jeremy was actually arriving at Texas Roadhouse right as we were leaving, so he recalculated his GPS and followed us. 

Thankfully, Applebee's wasn't nearly as busy when we got there.  Eliot went inside to put our name in and to let them know that Nana was in a wheelchair.  They set aside a table for us right by the entrance.  It was so nice to see everyone.  I don't think we've been together since we got home from Virginia.  Eliot and I saw Jeremy at Halloween and went to visit Mom, Dad and Nana in Bar Harbor, but we haven't all been together.

Dinner was nice.  We caught up with each other while we enjoyed our food.  Eliot and I both got our usual meals, so it didn't feel special, but it was still really nice.  The people around the table were really the most important thing anyways.  After dinner, we took a few quick pictures outside the restaurant. 

We hopped in our cars to drove over to an empty part of the parking lot.  Everyone had presents that they wanted to give me and I figured it would be easier to do it where we could all park next to each other.  Mom and Dad gave me flowers and a balloon.  (They also paid for our tickets to Gold Over America Tour a few weeks ago.)  

Nana gave me a card and some money.  Then, Jeremy totally broke the bank.  He bought me the Harry Potter Lego Advent Calendar that I'd hinted at wanting, but then he found these Harry Potter Funko mini figures and we bought me the whole display of them (literally).  Apparently, Jeremy had seen them at Target and thought I'd like them.  He bought all of them, and also used the box used to display them in order to carry them!  I haven't even had a chance to really look at them, but from what I saw, they are adorable!  I'm going to have to find somewhere in my office to set them all up!

After that, we all said goodbye to Jeremy since he was heading back south.  He had the farthest to travel so he wanted to get back on the road.  Eliot and I got back into the truck and followed Dad, Mom and Nana to Boothbay Harbor.  Along the way, we passed the state capital and waterfront.  I pointed things out to Eliot that I recognized.

Once we got closer to Boothbay Harbor, Dad pulled over in a gas station and Eliot and I took over leading.  I used our GPS to guide Eliot into town and over to the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens.  We really enjoyed the ride through town.  They had a ton of lights and stuff set up for Christmas in the town square.

We arrived at the botanical gardens a few minutes before our 8:00 ticket time.  We had Dad pass us on the ride in so we wouldn't be blocking their view in the truck.  By the time we waited in the line to get in, it was right about time!  We could already see the beginning of the light display and I was so excited!   

To say that I was impressed would be a terrible understatement.  All five of us were completely gobsmacked by the lights!  They had curtains of lights, trees covered in lights, a bridge of lights, a floating moose, tons of creatures, tunnels of lights, more trees, flowers, and tons of creatures made out of lights.  Everywhere you looked there were so many lights.  We wove back and forth through their parking area to see everything.  Eliot and I took pictures and I took a few videos, but nothing will ever compare to seeing it in person.  It was so beautiful!

It took us about 15-20 minutes to drive through the entire Gardens Aglow display.  The tickets were $40 a car for nonmembers, and I thought that was definitely worth it!  (If you are in the Maine or New England area, you should really check it out!)  

We followed my Dad back into town and towards Augusta.  He pulled over in the same gas station as before, and we got out to say goodbye to everyone.  We spent the first 5 to 10 minutes exclaiming how impressed we all were with the display.  Mom, Dad and Nana all really enjoyed it too.  We've all decided to go again next year!  (Although, I'm trying to convince Eliot to go back with me in December!)  

Then, we said goodbye to my parents and Nana.  They headed back towards Augusta to get on the highway.  Eliot and I drove down route 1 towards Brunswick.  At that point, it was 9:00 and places were closing.  Both of us had to use the bathroom, so we decided to make a quick stop at the Walmart in Brunswick to pee.  While we were in there, we checked out their Christmas stuff and a few other things.  We found a few treasures in the toy section and I left with a new Thomas Kinkade Disney Winter puzzle and another Disney Christmas family puzzle.

After checking out, we got back into the truck for the last leg of our journey home.  I helped Eliot get back to the highway and we headed south.  After another hour or so, we pulled into our driveway.  The Sharks were playing so we put the game on and chilled out for the rest of the night.  Unfortunately they lost, but it didn't really phase me.  (I have an ongoing joke with Eliot that they always lose on my birthday.)

This morning, we slept in pretty late as it was the first morning we didn't have to get up to do anything specific.  Once we got out of bed, we decided to get IHOP for brunch.  I had wanted to go yesterday on my birthday, but we didn't have time to.  Eliot went inside to order it to go and we enjoyed eating it in the parking lot near the newly re-opened and remodeled McDonald's.  (Saco has a two lane drive through!)

After, Eliot suggested we go to the Biddeford TJ Maxx to see what they had.  I hadn't really enjoyed my time in the Augusta store yesterday, so I was game to check out what they had.  I'm so glad we went because they had the Mickey Christmas Tree Truck cutting board that I've been looking for!  Eliot found it while I was mesmerized by the dishes.  If that wasn't good enough, I also found the Disney mixing bowls I'd been hoping to find!  We found a few other Disney and Snoopy items as well.  Then, Eliot and I checked out with all of our new treasures and I headed to the truck to carefully load them up while he ran into Target for a minute.

Once we returned home this afternoon, we've been chilling out for a little bit.  We've got plans for an evening filled with working on business stuff.  We're planning to watch a Hallmark movie while eating the Subway sandwiches Eliot will get later.  Then, we'll put the Christmas music on while we work away like little elves until bedtime!

Our plans didn't go exactly as planned... Eliot and I never made it to Hobby Lobby in Waterville.  We had to ditch having dinner at Texas Roadhouse.  Then, I never got to wear my new rainbow sweater because it was too cold to not have my winter coat on... but regardless of that, I still had a wonderful birthday!  I'm glad I got to spend it with my family and that they all traveled quite a distance just so they could spend a few hours with me on my birthday.  

I had a wonderful birthday weekend and I feel very loved!  Cheers to 37!!!  °o°

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