memories of my golden birthday

At supper tonight, eating leftover tater tot casserole with mildly complaining daughters who needed to be continually reminded to “Take another bite,” JJ reminded me about how different this birthday was for us compared to my golden birthday ten years ago.

Ten years ago, I flew to L.A. for the Christmas break to be with my then-fiance over the holidays.  At the time, he was living in North Hollywood, serving as a vicar (student pastor) at a large congregation there.  For my birthday, he took me out to a VERY fancy restaurant, called Le Petit Chateau.  We spent an exorbitant amount on the meal — I think the bill was around $150.  We haven’t spent that much on a meal since, although there was one anniversary dinner where our bill hit $100.  (JJ said it was by far the best steak he’s ever had!)  I don’t remember anything we ate at Le Petit Chateau on my birthday, but I know the whole evening felt magical.  It was my golden birthday, I was in L.A., I was away from home for the first time at Christmas, and I was with my intended in a fancy restaurant.  It was a wonderful evening.

After the meal, we drove to our local mall, where Johnold took me to the fanciest of the fancy stores at the mall, took me to the perfume section, and told me to pick out a bottle of perfume for my birthday present.  I remember spraying different perfumes on various places up and down both of my inner arms.  I remember that the perfume section, along with the entire store in general, was crowded with people looking for a perfect last-minute Christmas present.  It was crowded, full of energy, and so much fun!

I eventually chose the fragrance “Cashmere Mist” by Donna Karan.  In the ten years since then, I’ve used up at least one bottle of the perfume, and it has become “my” fragrance.  I was delighted to open up a Macy’s perfume catalog this past weekend and discover that a whole page of advertising was devoted to Cashmere Mist.  I’m glad that I picked a good fragrance, one that others agree is good, and a fragrance that will continue to be around for a while.

That was my golden birthday ten years ago.

My birthday today was less glamorous, but it was still filled with love.  My husband works hard to do the best he can at his job, and my children love us and (most of the time) seem to enjoy having us as parents. At least, that’s what Lyd says, “Momma, I’m so glad you’re my Mommy.”  I am very, very blessed, and while today’s birthday presents didn’t consist of a fancy dinner or an elegant bottle of perfume, they were still given with love.  I felt surrounded by love, and that makes it a good birthday.