Wait a second, I’m how old?
Last week, I turned thirty-two years old. Not quite sure how that happened. It was just the other day that I was six years old and dressing up as Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum with my best elementary school friend Lauren. And didn’t I just graduate high school like five seconds ago? And where did all these dogs come from?
It’s a curious thing, getting older. When I look back over my life, it feels like it’s being going on for eons and yet it’s been the blink of an eye. Seconds become minutes become days become years. And suddenly the little girl who loved animals and devoured every book she could get her hands on and made lame jokes is now an adult in her thirties who still loves animals, devours every book she can get her hands on (granted, usually as an e-book or audiobook…) and makes even lamer jokes.
It’s tempting on birthdays to analyze where the time has gone – to say, have I accomplished enough, am I on track with my peers – basically am I meeting society’s expectations of what a thirty-two year old looks like. But this year I just don’t care. I’m happy with who I am, where I’m at and what I have. In fact, I have way more than I deserve. I’m married to my high school sweetheart and still madly in love with him. I have five dogs that I love unconditionally … even when they do the darnedest things like take out the garbage for me (all over the kitchen floor) and chew up my underwear (thanks Ella, I didn’t need those or anything). I have parents who love and support me even when I’m positive I make them scratch their heads and wonder what the heck I’m doing. I have in-laws who love me like I’ve always been a part of their family. I have peace that comes from knowing the worst I’ve ever done is forgiven by God. The crazy thing is I know that the future holds even more wonderful things. One day, I’ll be a parent. I don’t know yet what that will look like – whether I’ll be a biological parent, a foster parent or an adoptive parent. But one of those will happen and then my whole world will get even bigger. So, thirty-two looks pretty awesome from where I’m sitting.
To celebrate the day, I kicked it off with a workout at the gym and then the best kind of breakfast – one enjoyed outside in beautiful weather and accompanied by good conversation.
— I don’t know what Annie is doing in the above photo, either. Probably plotting to steal our neighbor’s Mini Cooper and take it joy-riding to a bakery where she will promptly wreak all kinds of havoc on those poor, unsuspecting employees, gobbling up every loaf in sight. That dog is a carbohydrate fiend. —
Afterwards, we headed up to Portland. I have an absolute hatred/fear of driving on I-5 so we took an alternate route which maybe sorta kinda definitely took way longer than we thought. By the time we got to PDX, we were pretty ravenous, so we hit up the food trucks for some Indian food. Delicious but oh.so.filling – I badly wanted to take a nap afterward.
Instead of napping on the sidewalk (which would not have been amiss in downtown Portland), we headed over to the International Rose Test Garden. The roses were all in bloom and they were beyond gorgeous. Consider yourself lucky that I somehow did not take a photo of every single bloom. I was tempted.
This purple one was definitely a favorite – the petals were dark on the outside and light on the inside and made for a stunning bloom.
We tried to steal this guy’s hat but he didn’t seem too happy about it so we let him keep it.
And in case you’re wondering how to properly pose for a photo in a rose garden, Andrew has kindly demonstrated the correct stance. Place your cheek ever so gently next to the bloom. Close your eyes. You are now a professional rose model.
We ended the day with some delicious ice cream from Salt & Straw and a little shopping before making the drive home on
the worst interstate in America the 5.
**And for you argumentative types: yes, I have driven on I-95. In a blizzard. And the 5 is still the worst.