As you know, I turned 30 two weeks ago. Of course I had to celebrate, but how? At first I hoped for the extravagant: dress codes and dance floors, rented urban spaces and mountains of themed decorations. I think I was trying to live up to some kind of standard of “the kind of party a cool 30-year-old would have,” but the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to just ignore my birthday altogether. I finally realized that, although I love dancing and dressing up, I have so little experience with planning big ‘dos that it would be impossible for me to actually enjoy myself if I had one; I’d only be fretting over whether everything was amply spectacular and all the guests wowed by the perfection of splendor. After much pondering, in lieu of a fancy bash, I opted for a laid-back day with friends, food, and a nice mix of indoor/outdoor time. It was the perfect thing and I had a wonderful time.
(All photos below are from my youngest sister Allison. Thanks, Al! 🙂 )
We started with an easy walk around China Camp State Park in San Rafael. We didn’t get to see the actual old Chinese fishing camp, but we did spot some mushrooms, lichens, and beautiful manzanitas (called “refrigerator trees” because the smooth bark is always cool to the touch).
After our walk, we headed over to the fabulous San Rafael farmers’ market, where we ate lunch and picked up supplies for the party.
In the early afternoon, we returned over the Richmond Bridge to our house, and spent the rest of the day feasting and chatting, drinking mulled cider and ginger-citrus “beer.”
Earlier this month, I wrote that I’d been feeling lonely, but this birthday has reminded me that in spite of the essential loneliness of our individuality, I’m blessed with many loving friends and a close-knit family. Much love to all of you who came to the party (hi Anna! 🙂 ) or sent birthday wishes in any way. What an incredible way to celebrate my three decades of existence. I love you all so much.
Sounds like my kinda party Lisa! I’m so glad you had such a lovely time! Loved the photos, and what a coincidence about those wild mustard flowers! I just blogged about them a few days ago….hang on, i’ll show you! —> http://munnzee.wordpress.com/2011/12/19/fields-of-gold/
Aaah, thanks for the link, Munira! Just left a comment there. What a coincidence indeed! Wish you could have been at the party. 🙂
Wow what an assortment of good looking foods. Wish I was there for the party 🙂 Happy 30th.
Wish you’d been there too, Walter! Thank you! 🙂 It was quite the feast. 😉
YAAAAAY!!! ❤ i had an awesome time!!! 😀 😀 😀
😀 So glad!! I keep thinking how fabulously elegant you looked, too. 😉
Happy BDAY again, Lisa! It looks like you had a well-deserved blast! I know that you will forever treasure these memories, as you’ve captured them beautifully. Nothing like good friends, great fellowship, conversation, and time taken to celebrate!
Thanks for sharing!
Thank you again, Empress! 🙂 I agree! Friends, fellowship, conversation, and time… and food and music! All we lacked was dancing, and after all that bread, perhaps it’s best. 😉
Oooh! Besides wishing we lived closer to each other so we can visit (and attend parties!), I saw cake and pie and nearly floated away. 🙂
I’m glad your celebration was so cool and so what you wanted. Thanks for sharing the photos of your beautiful day and celebration.
(And Lyapa’s expression was priceless!)
Yes yes yes I so wish you could have been there, Ré!! That cake and pie were really wonderful. Did I say the pie was sweet potato and bought from the market too? I can make good pies myself but sometimes it’s delightful not to have to… and this one was perfection. And I can’t stop raving about the cake.
Lyapa is full of great expressions. We brought her to my parents’ house for Christmas and since she doesn’t adapt well to new places, she has been treating us to lengthy sulks, grumpy lurking, and her full, expansive range of grumbled feline cusswords and swearing-under-her-breath.
Looks like an awesome birthday, thanks for sharing 🙂 I too tend to prefer going for a more relaxed option; low-key in some ways, but ever soulful x
Yes! I’m SO glad I opted for relaxed over glam. I can save the fancy stuff for my 50th or somesuch. 😉
Like I said, I was suppressing oinks over the salad and bread and cheese and pate. Soooo gooooood. Happy birthday to you, Lisa, and thank you for including me! xoox!!!
Thank YOU for coming, Anna! ❤ ❤ ❤ No need to suppress oinks at our house. 😉 Om nom nom nom!!!
Thank you, Lisa! I’m so glad there were pictures to share. It looks like a low key, fun, and fabulous celebration — friends, family, good food (and a walk) — perfect!
Yes! Yay for sisters who are active with their cameras at parties. 😉 It was the perfect party!
Ohhhh, this is so lovely!! Love all of the photos, particularly of you and your sisters (awww!), Lyapa sulking, and, of course, all of the delicious food! Wow. The next best thing to celebrating with you. 🙂
Aw, thanks, Mo!! 🙂 Lyapa is a sulkster par excellence. She loves attention (how very uncatlike of her!) and when we’re having a party and she doesn’t get enough, she really sulks… and when she gets too much, she gets cranky and lashes out. ;b Silly cat!
Wow, what a great looking spread there. That reminds me of another birthday meal we took part in up in Big Bear, though yours looks like a little smaller. Just a little. So sorry I wasn’t able to be there…
I think this one was just a tad bit smaller… must be because you and Jackie and Ying weren’t here in person. ;b I really miss our gatherings!! And our book club and our board games… and actually most of all I just miss running upstairs and hanging out with you.
What a delicious spread! Happy birthday a little late
Thank you, Carla! I couldn’t have asked for a better birthday. 🙂
[…] I think about having a wonderful time, I think of the parties we used to host at our house. Dear friends, good music, delicious food, lots of laughter, Lyapa […]