Sunday, November 17, 2013

Jesse's Birthday 2013

It's that time of year again - Jesse's birthday! His birthday was on 11/11 which was a Monday this year, but we started celebrating the Saturday prior. As I've documented before, I like to do a little more than just buy a gift, wrap it up and present it to him. Past birthdays have been much more elaborate or creative - that is, until we had a kid. And really, I can't blame the kid - it's more about me coming up with fresh and fun ideas.

One thing I did know was that I wanted us to have some one on one time so I worked it out with Grandma to have Riley spend Saturday night at her house. I then left it up to Jesse to tell me what he wanted to do (movie, dinner...). To be honest I can't remember what we did at first this day. I didn't take a lot of pictures to help me remember and when I asked Jesse we had a big debate about when we went to the gym and when we went on that "really cold walk followed by yogurt" (I mean besides when we did that on his actual birthday). What I do remember is making a trip to REI before dinner. Jesse announced that he wanted a new winter hat. Little did he know that I already bought him one for his birthday. I didn't try to stop this trip because I wasn't 'in love' with the hat I bought him and also figured another hat isn't the end of the world. He ended up buying a hat totally different than the one I got him and a pair of gloves.

Also, that coat was a previous b-day gift that included a treasure hunt at REI.

With the shopping done we headed off to Naviya's Thai Brasserie in Linden Hills - something we've been meaning to do since they opened around 3 years ago. Just like last year Jesse wanted to eat at a Thai restaurant which was totally fine by me.

We are big fans of fresh spring rolls and this place did not disappoint. All of the food was delish... and spicy. On a scale of 1 - 5, I got a 1 for my meal and my lips were tingling. Jesse got a 3 and looked visibly uncomfortable at times (just the way he likes it). The lighting was a little too bright for my liking and there was a chill as if I was sitting next to a cracked door, but we'd totally got back here.

After dinner, we thought about going to a movie, but both agreed that jammies on the couch while watching Game of Thrones sounded delightful. We also stayed up past our regular bedtime and slept in until about 8 am. It was a wild and crazy night for us old folks.

The next day we went to the gym and then met grandma and grandpa at Big Bowl for more celebrations (and to pick up our kid). Jesse got an Amazon gift card (which he promptly used) and some homemade chocolate chip cookies (which Riley and I may have mostly eaten) from his mom and her fiance. This was the perfect gift for him as he pretty much orders from Amazon weekly (thank you Amazon Prime). If Amazon started selling groceries I'm fairly certain Jesse would buy all our food from there too.

This year (like most years) I struggled with what I was going to give Jesse as a gift. We had our night out the night before, but that wasn't really anything exciting. I finally decided to incorporate an idea I found on Live Inside my Bubble's blog about a gift she received on her fourth anniversary. Essentially, her husband framed 4 Google Earth photos of where the met, where they live, where they wed, and where they play. I thought it was great.

We don't have a lot of wall space left over to hang something like this so I debated about putting it in a different format, and when I eventually went to Target to find a frame I actually settled on a memory box that had 4 spots on top for pictures. 

Initially, I wanted to change things up with the 4 locations. I haven't bought Jesse a big ticket item for sometime and so I wanted to get him something more than a sentimental gift. We've been talking about one day visiting my friend in Colorado so I thought about having pictures from three places we've been, and then one of Colorado - a way to say 'hey, we are going on vacation'. That didn't really work out after Jesse told me not to get him anything big since we were about to purchase two big ticket items - a PlayStation 4 and a camera. See, if Jesse wants something he just buys it. Otherwise, I may have been able to order that PlayStation 4 for him. And that camera? Well, apparently that's what I am getting for my birthday, but it's really something both of us will enjoy.

So with that I put the following pictures in the memory box:

Where we met - we started our first date at the French Meadow Bakery
Where we live - a view of our neighborhood
Where we wed - Trunk Bay on St. John, USVI
Where we play - The North Shore of Minnesota

Inside I included pictures from throughout the years with commentary on the back. I'm not sure where we'll keep it or how often we'll add to it, but I think it was just the sentimental thing he (and I) needed. It was fun to put together and honestly made me feel more connected to him. Cheesy perhaps, but true. 

I did get a few other items for him: a new colorful winter hat (to replace the one I shrunk last year), a t-shirt (since he's always saying he needs new ones) and a yoga mat towel (which he loved, but returned as he wants to find one that fits his mat better).

After lunch we wandered around the Galleria Mall a little bit, stopping at Restoration Hardware. I love a lot of what they have, but it also depresses me as their stuff is not made for small roomed houses like ours.

And this was only 1/3 of the couch. Seriously, who needs a couch this big? Not us. 

The next day was Jesse's actual birthday. I took a half day (I worked in the morning) so that we could hang out a little in the afternoon before picking Riley up from school. Once off from work we headed out for a walk and ended up getting frozen yogurt (again). The store owner happened to be working that day and commented on our heading out in the cold for yogurt. I mentioned that it was Jesse's birthday and suddenly his frozen yogurt was on the house. Seriously, love this place.

Later, we picked Riley up from school and headed off to the mall to find her some new boots. We bought her spendy new boots previously and they tore up her ankles and she now refuses to wear them (I don't blame her). We ended up buying some cheap Ugg like boots to at least keep her feet warm. We also played a little at the mall play area and commented how Riley was probably going to end up with a cold again (we just got over mild colds a couple weeks ago), but it was me that ended up sick. Bah.

Riley also really wanted cupcakes for Jesse's birthday so we stopped at Byerly's to get some rotisserie chicken for dinner and a couple cupcakes. She selected a carrot cupcake (and really only ate a few bites - mostly frosting), and Jesse and I decided to split the Salty Dog (which was really salty and chocolaty and nummy).

And that was that. Nothing too exciting, but that's sort of how Jesse rolls. However, next year this man turns 40 so I will have to step things up. He's not a party guy so maybe we'll make that trip to Colorado after all.

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