My Photography

Friday, May 16, 2014

Ringing in 25...

With all the birthdays and other things going on I haven't had time to write about my own birthday! A week ago today I hit the quarter-of-a-century mark, and am feeling a bit old as a result. ;D This birthday was the best birthday in many years, filled with friends and celebrations and good food and really lovely gifts! 

Disclaimer: the only photos taken of people this weekend are either on Othman's phone or his mom's camera, neither of which I have access to right now. So you'll just be seeing pics of all the stuff I got, which is not meant to be braggy, just a way to say thanks!

On Friday--my actual birthday--I worked until 9pm, but brought a dark-chocolate-coconut tart to work (as I do every year) which everyone really enjoyed. Thankfully they were very busy eating, sparing me the embarrassment of singing to me! ;D After work Othman picked me up and took me out to a really nice sushi dinner at Kiotori, one of the fancier sushi places around, where we ate well and laughed a lot.

We arrived home and as I was taking off my shoes he told me to close my eyes and hold out my hands, saying "be careful it's a bit heavy". This is what I opened my eyes to see:

I'd actually been bugging him to get me a plant to fill in our empty flower pot (well, not exactly empty, but full of a plant I managed to kill, oops!). He got me all the other plants as gifts so I didn't want to buy one myself and break the trend, hehe. I was pretty content with this as my birthday present, but he wasn't done! He handed me a big bag and I pulled out all this: 

He magically sensed exactly which painting supplies I needed, which is pretty impressive. The bag also contained some gourmet dark chocolate (very-empty box pictured below, haha) and a fun little silicone oven mitt.

I went to bed that night feeling old but spoiled! But the birthday celebrations weren't over yet. The next day I got a lovely little present from a co-worker who knows how much I like to read! I've noticed these Moroccan bookmarks before but this one is the nicest I've ever seen, for sure.

It's the perfect size for my Game of Thrones
books! (I found someone to borrow them from,
and am listening to them on audio during taxi
rides etc. in tandem, so by now I'm almost
done with the fourth!)

That night Othman and I went to have dinner with some friends at Papagayo, a restaurant that I had never been to before. People around here call it Brazilian, but it's more Brazilian/Argentinian, and the food wasn't feijoada or anything but it was delicious! Sipping on my caipirinha and listening to live music surrounded by great people, I knew I couldn't have asked for more. Well I guess I was a bit upset because I had forgotten the second tart I had made, which I wanted us all to have for dessert. (In the US if you say it's your birthday they'll bring you a free dessert and sing to you--here you bring your own cake to the restaurant and they'll serve it and sing.) In the end it wasn't a big deal though, because I shared my birthday weekend with many people there that night and all the fanfare they got as the band sang to them was something I was happy to avoid. 

Before dinner a friend gave me these fantastic sandals. She not only knew my size and that I needed some new ones, but she also managed to find some that I would totally choose for myself. I've definitely worn them 6 out of 7 days since.

Then during dinner another friend gave me this beautiful mug, picture courtesy of Vincent van Gogh:

This week an adult student of mine even brought me some little things! She takes Chinese classes and was doing some origami in a workshop and made the little crane for me and taught me how to make the basket after class! I still can't believe I actually made that, haha. The Chinese characters spell my name in Chinese and the other is Arabic calligraphy, so pretty!

 Last but not least, on Sunday Othman and I went to his parents house, where we had a nice dinner and then ate the previously-forgotten tart after I blew out some candles for the first time that weekend. Afterward his mom gave me a very heavy bag with these two boxes inside:

My first thought was, wow, fancy. And I was right! They gave me 6 gorgeous dessert plates, each with a different floral pattern, completed by 6 matching espresso cups with their saucers. I've never had any dishes half so nice, and I know I'll keep these for a long time.

I love how the plates and saucers have off-centered borders, I think that's a really cute touch.

In the meantime in the digital world of social media this happened on Facebook:

...and this...

...meaning I'm going to have one of my absolute best friends at my Moroccan wedding, which may have been the best birthday gift of all. 

In addition to the Easter/birthday package from my family, my mom wrote me a lovely post on her blog, a part of which here:

And little sister Maria, the other family member with a blog, also wrote me a sweet post:

Well if all that doesn't count as spoiled I'm not sure what does! Thank you thank you thank you everybody for a wonderful birthday weekend, here's hoping that this birthday, during which I felt surrounded by so much love, reflects the year ahead!!

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