Being a host during this celebration, naturally I didn't get to spend a huge amount of time with each individual who showed up. At one point in the night, between feeding the neighbor kids, hugging gorgeous Portuguese men longer than they expected (Kiki, your brother is "muito quente!") figuring out how to put Niko's transformer back into a truck, receiving kisses from neighbors, making sure everyone was eating and drinking enough... I sat down on the lawn to take a breather and looked around. I thought to myself: every single one of these people are marvelous. I felt overwhelmed with happiness seeing my parent-friends relaxed and carefree, the kids running around with sugar-highs, my neighbors chatting with my best pals I've known forever, Liz's smile lighting up the backyard while Mary-mac cracks her up, hearing the accents of Germany, Australia, Scotland, England, Eritrea, and Portugal floating through the air, witnessing a quick friendship between strangers as Val and Wayne became spontaneous grill-masters taking charge, hearing Connie Wong by the fire-bowl proclaim, "you know, smores just bring people together!"
This was one of my favorite birthdays to date... only because of the company. I had to document my gifts and flowers everyone so generously brought. I took photos of each arrangement and gift I received. (I'm a carver not a photographer fyi!) The personality in each bouquet is clearly apparent as a reflection of the person who methodically placed each stem in place. Pure artistic beauty. Thank you so much. From the depths of my gratitude, I adore each and everyone you.
(I suggest you click on the image to enlarge the details)