Birthday Month

At our house, we don't just celebrate birthdays, we have a Birthday Week. The birthday person chooses when it starts and stops, but you get a full 7 days of whatever you want. This year, with all of the traveling we've been doing, it has felt like my birthday (August 26 – thank you for the birthday wishes!) was more like a birthday month.

Cheese steaks! Nomnomnom

A week after Mt. Washington, we went to Philadelphia for a great weekend with my former Peace Corps sitemate, Alex, and his fiancé Johanna. We did a lot of typical Philly tourist stops, including the Liberty Bell, Constitution Hall, and the US Mint (highly recommended). And of course, cheese steaks. We also cheered on the Cardinals to a victory over the Phillies, which was a nice early birthday present.

Crab stuffed mushrooms, haricot verts, and duck breast! Nomnomnom

After a weekend off, Sara made me a delicious dinner for my actual birthday. She roasted her first duck – I was very impressed (and full). I knew those cooking classes I got her for her birthday would pay dividends later! We spent the rest of the weekend in NYC visiting our friends Sarah and Dominic, who were gracious enough to host us even though they were moving the following weekend. I'd spent a previous birthday in the Peace Corps celebrating with them, where I won a dance competition that Dominic was convinced was rigged (I'm sure my birthday had nothing to do with me winning…). Unfortunately we didn't have time for a rematch, but we did go to the USS Intrepid to see the space shuttle Enterprise, which was very cool (second only to the Saturn 5 rocket we saw in Houston in '10). I did jump up and touch it, and even though I got yelled at by security, it was my birthday week so it's ok.

The rest of the weekend was great. We hit up some comedy, the oldest bar in New York City, met up with our friend Lauren for brunch, and finished off with a moving visit to the 9/11 memorial. It was a wonderful weekend and I'm very sad Sarah and Dom are moving from NYC. We'll miss you guys!

Celebrating 38 wonderful years

A few days later, my parents came in town for 5 nights, which was great. They were celebrating their 38th anniversary, so we took them on a sunset dinner cruise through Boston harbor. The boat was incredible, and we had a grea time celebrating and dancing the night away. Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad!

The rest of the weekend was fun, and, like most family trips, the focus was on the food. We ate whole lobsters at Woodmans after a beautiful day in Rockport on the north shore (where we ate Gifford's ice cream), and I introduced them to lobster rolls (“the best meal I've ever had” – Marsha). Unfortunately we live far from our family so we don't get these good times with our family often enough, but we really cherish and make the most of the time we have.

The final weekend of birthday month was spent whitewater rafting, something I've never done before but has been on my bucket list. I went with Boston Social Sports, so about 200 people descended on the Kennebec River in Maine for some camping, partying, and rafting. The river is controlled by a hydro-electric dam, and last weekend was the biggest release of the season 8,850 CFS! That meant for every second, 8,850 cubic feet of water was rushing past you. Needless to say, this led to some massive class IV and V rapids, with the highest being more than 20 feet tall. It was an incredible rush to say the least.

I don't think I could have asked for a better birthday month, especially with getting to spend it with so many great friends and family.

 

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