On top of the usual Christmas shopping, I have my birthday and hubby has a lot of company Christmas functions. That meant a lot of late nights for him, which translated to full-work days for me.
I can't tell you how much of a difference it makes when the hub comes home for dinner. I have an extra pair of hands and everything just seems so much easier - even if its just psychologically. Hah.
This year, I was quite torn about how to celebrate my birthday. In Germany, nobody celebrates their birthday in advance. So it wouldn't even be an option for me to celebrate my birthday 2 days before the actual day on a Saturday / Sunday. Argh.
The following weekend would have been the 4th advent so everybody's usually crazy busy and that Saturday also happened to be the birthday of a close friend of mine.
The long and short story of it is that unlike other years, I didn't have any official birthday celebratio.
The original plan was to go to Strasbourg with the kids on my birthday, since hubby took half a day off work. The Christmas market there is awesome and I would get to indulge in my Japanese food again.
BUT one day before my birthday, I checked the weather forecast and it predicted rain. *doh!*
Rain + kids + outdoors in a French city = Recipe for disaster
That's when I threw all plans out of the window. I knew two of my girlfriends were free, so I asked them over. My neighbor and her kid were free too so a birthday brunch it was!
It was a very simple affair. Just 3 women, 3 kids (Sam was at preschool) and 1 guy.
We chit-chatted, the kids played, they sang me the birthday song and I got a little present - which was completely unexpected either.
|My chocolate cheese cake which hubby bought (2 candles for "32". Get it?)|
|Little P. all grown up and 1 year old already!|
|My lovely sweeties could wait to sink their teeth into the cake|
My friends left early afternoon, while my kids went down for their naps.
When they woke up, we decided to go to an indoor water park (Fildorado) with my neighbor and her kid, just 10 minutes from my house.
It had a baby pool, regular pool, a wave pool, 3 slides and even a thermal pool outdoors! Awesome! The entire facility was so well-kept and clean, it was such a pleasure to bring our kids for their little outing!
The kids had a blast! Hubby went down the huge water slides with both boys and while Sammy is all "Yeah, let's do it again!", Gabriel was more reserved and shell-shocked than anything.
There was even a very steep slide that stopped in mid-air such that one flies through the air to land on another slide. Crazy awesome! And yes, I did go down that slide too! Without the kids of course! It was the best adrenalin-rush in a swimming pool I've ever had! My heart felt like it was going to pop out of my body when I landed at the bottom!
Everybody had a superb time and the kids were knackered. I would have loved to say that the kids slept like a rock, but hmmm.... let's just say they must have been dreaming about the water slides, because both Sammy and Gabriel had pretty restless sleeps. Hee hee.
And that's not all!
Because my in-laws weren't available to babysit the kids on my actual birthday, they actually babysat the kids on the weekend so hubby and I could spend some time together!
We actually went for a movie date on Saturday, where I basically had to endure through the "Hobbit" because the screen was pretty large and somehow I had the mother of all headaches. I don't know if its because of all the fighting scenes or the fact that I had to focus on a German movie, but the movie was a pain to watch. It was good to have caught the last part of the trilogy though, since we watched the first two parts and hubby is a huge LOTR fan.
We shopped for a bit before our dinner reservation at 7.30pm at a wonderfully posh and fantastic Italian restaurant, OGGI.
I'm not used to having 2 - hour meals anymore but oh boy. Have I missed this! Hub and I had a hard time not talking about work or kids though! What did we use to talk about on date nights?
At my suggestion, we talked about 3 qualities we liked about each other and at some point in time during the dinner date, the conversation drifted back to about our kids and all their funny antics!
We actually had time to savor our wines!
|Mixed salad for me as a starter (5€)|
|First main course - Pasta with fresh parmesan and truffles. BEST pasta ever! Still salivating over it! (15€)|
|Hub had some ragout with veal (forgot the price. Maybe 15€?)|
|2nd main course - Grilled fish platter. Grilled to perfection and freshest seafood. But very pricey for a baby portion (26€)|
|Perennial fave - Tiramisu (5€). It's ok, lacking the omph.|
|Panna Cotta (6€) - This one totally made the cut. Great texture and softness complimented with a raspberry topping.|
And the best part?
That was not all!
On Sunday, we went for our 1.5-hour Thai-mix-oil massage at Thai Jasmin. This place has by now become our signature indulgence whenever we have a special occasion to celebrate! Hmmm... actually that means birthdays and our wedding anniversary.
Felt sooo blessed!
It was like a birthday weekend actually! No party, no stress, no present galore but I wouldn't have it any other way! It was so relaxing, hub and I had some time to reconnect and I could celebrate my special day with family and close friends. Oh and of course all the birthday wishes on FB, Whatsapp, phone calls, did make me feel extra special.
I think as one grows older, one just want to focus on the things that really matter. And less is certainly more.
Thank you dear Werner and Anita for taking the kids for so long so hub and I could have a lovely birthday weekend. We are very grateful for you both!