Birthday’s – a time to celebrate the year passed and look forward to the year ahead! It’s the one day a year I do not feel bad for ‘demanding’ to spend the time doing exactly what I want and hoping my friends and family join me for the ride. I am so fortunate to have so many amazing people in my life that make me feel very special in so many ways, and my birthday weekend was no exception. My desired feeling as of late is to feel alive in every sense of the word and connected – safe to say that was accomplished. With that, comes the reality that I was enjoying the moment so much I didn’t stop to take photos and capture the memories like I wish I had. Going through the photos I felt disappointed as I felt like they didn’t do justice to just how much joy the weekend had brought me – you couldn’t see just how amazing I felt and I didn’t get enough of everyone there who made my bday perfect! Being in the business of capturing style and soul so perfectly for the pages of the magazine often results in pressure on myself for perfection in photography. There I was thinking, too dark, not staged, bad angle, really? no photos taken of that?, etc… then it hit me … this is truly you, Jody! The reality is, what brings me the most joy is being with the people I love, doing what I love, and being so in the moment and full of joy that the last thing I think about it stopping for a photo or a post – that was captured. What an amazing time that I had – a birthday I will never forget! 32 is off to a great start!
Part 1 of my celebrations I took that to a literal level of ‘joining me for the ride’ and wanted to kick off my Birthday at an Amusement Park – Playland here we come! Maybe it was the perfect metaphor for the last year of my life – highs and lows, twists and turns, fear and excitement, a lot of steep uphill climbs from the bottom and a lot of joy plunging into new territory and feeling alive. I wanted more than anything to feel like a kid again, carefree and full of adventure. As planned, I started it off with the old wooden Roller Coaster from 1965 and ended off with the Log Ride from 1985…2 classics that put a smile on my face every time since childhood! The Revelation rocked my world as what was once the ride I could see from the highway on my commutes to now the ride that swung me around like an airplane propeller 160 feet in the air going 100 km/hour. I quickly learned that my tolerance to the spins has changed significantly since I was a kid, but nothing could stop this 32-year-old kid that day from pushing through. What a fun kick off to my special weekend! And of course wrapped up with Cotton Candy and a Candy Apple to add the finishing touch to this playful day.
Part 2 of my Birthday wish was to be surrounded with those I love and just hang out enjoying each others company in a setting where everyone can cater to their own desire. Yes, it was my special day, but I wanted all guests to feel like it was their special day too. I am beyond grateful to have Kyla (co-founder of I Like Her Style Vancouver and my Childhood Best Friend) and her husband Kyle in my life, and no surprise they stepped up to host this dream birthday of mine and because of them it became a reality. I am one lucky gal! At the BBQ Party, on the perfect sunny day of the May Long Weekend I might add, one could be active and play badminton, or lounge in a reclining chair as the observer. You could mix and mingle in the heart of the crowd, or you could make yourself comfortable in the corner of the yard with just a few friends. Drink and food options endless to tickle your fancy just how you like. Even down to the birthday ‘cake’, which I requested to be a more customizable sweet treat for everyone’s liking – a Sundae bar with all the fixin’s provided so perfectly by Momma Belanger! My Mom is the best at ensuring every detail is in sync and she nailed this Backyard BBQ theme, with red & white checkered decor and chalkboard accents. All the ingredients for my ideal bday: family & friends, music rocking with tunes for all ages, BBQ fired up with a buffet of sides to choose from, sports & games to fuel the competitive spirit in me, a bar with endless possibilities for Sunday Funday , a fire to get the late night stories circling, tons of laughter, and old stories circling while new ones are being made.
Part 3 was the perfect lazy sunny day with Kyla and her girls Kaitlyn & Kadence in the backyard, taking us way back to when we were little girls growing up. Swimsuits were on to transition from the cooled down hot tub to running through the sprinkler when we need a break from the hot sun. The music was playing a mix of old and new to get our feet tapping and soul singing as we reminisced about old times and recapped the party. We enjoyed some ‘poolside’ inspired cocktails while picking away at the never-ending leftovers from the party for buffet #2. Relaxation mode at its finest and the perfect way to wrap up an amazing weekend, wouldn’t have had it any other way!
Cheers to an amazing birthday weekend!
Thank you to all of you who made my birthday so special with memories that will last a lifetime!
Lots of Love,