My sister loves a good surprise. Like seriously, every birthday for anyone she knows has to have a surprise element and she plans all of the details well in advance. I am not sure what she loves more... seeing the look on the person's face or making sure each details is executed just perfectly. Regardless, she was a integral part in my 24th surprise birthday party.
(gina and I after the big 'surprise')
I don't remember the exact context on how I was convinced to celebrate my birthday just gina and I (and not at least include ryan in some way) but at the time there was a brilliant story that I have no remembrance of now. However, gina asked me to get all dressed up for an evening of celebration and I of course was game. I dolled myself up and gina took me to a great local tapas restaurant, the 9th door. Plate after plate of delicious spanish tapas came out as we sipped on mojitos and sangria. The evening felt so special; the two of us in this intimate yet vibrant restaurant just laughing and telling stories.
(lindy and I having some vino)
(gina, mariah and I / look how old our phones are... ha!)
As we got in the car and started to drive the opposite direction of my house, I got a bit suspicious of what destination laid ahead. I shouldn't have been wary though, in true gina fashion, the dinner was just the beginning of the surprises. We walked into ryan's house (his dad's loft in uptown) and a huge group of our friends were all dressed up waiting for our arrival! Gina and ryan had worked out quite the birthday celebration in my honor and the festivities lasted for hours. Drinks were poured, music was playing and the energy in the loft matched the excitement in my heart.
(clockwise from top left: luke, me, ryan, rosie, steven, brian and nate)
Looking back on this night, I get an instant smile on my face. The planning, the dinner, the surprise and the love from the friends in attendance is more than I could have imagined. So many of our friends who came out to celebrate my big 2-4 are still some of my closest friends to this day which is truly the best part now.