May 18th, 2012
I honestly, and wholeheartedly, wanted to write a post yesterday. Being that yesterday marked the start of my 27th year on earth (or I mean, the end of my 27th year? I just really confused myself… you turn one after you have been alive a whole year— so now I have been alive 27 years, so it’s the end, right?), anyway… I am now 27.
An account of my day, to remember years down the road, as this is the closest thing I have to a journal:
I walked to work decked out in mascara (a rarity) and iron curled hair (that deflated within the hour-why doesn’t hair spray work?), sporting a lovely flowered dress. You have to look good on your birthday, you know? As I went to open my classroom door a balloon almost hit me in the face, I looked up and eight colorful balloons had been taped to my door (surrounding my “welcome to second grade” poster). Smiling I walked across my room, and saw a post-it note stuck on my computer screen that read, “Play as often as possible”, opened in my internet browser was New Kids on the Block’s version of “Happy Birthday” (which I had never heard before— so, so great!). Then (I am actually noticing everything one step at a time, since I am not the most observant person in the world) I see the gift bag. Nailholic Magazine (yes-such a thing exists!), bedazzlement nail kit, and the BIGGEST heart-shaped reeses peanut butter cup I have ever seen! I turn around-stunned- and see that I have completely missed the happy birthday banner taped underneath my whiteboard/smartboard, decorated with balloons on either side. I head over to the person responsible— the third grade teacher and great friend Joëlle. She had to have rolled into school EARLY to surprise me— knowing I arrive at work anywhere from 7-7:30! (She normally gets to work at 7:45ish).
Just when I start to recover one of my students walks in with a life-size balloon PERSON. My obvious teacher replacement for the day, as no one should work on their birthday— right? Pictures posted below Another student’s mom walks in with a home-made strawberry tart. I think I gained at least ten pounds yesterday. A student from last year (as if she remembered my birthday!) shows up with a box wrapped in PURPLE (best color) and gave me a collection of lip gloss, the extra sparkly one is my favorite. Today another one of my student’s from last year made sure to give me a gift (of CHOCOLATE) when he realized my birthday was the day before… being a teacher on your birthday is THE BEST JOB. In the past I have worked on several of my birthdays— you just don’t get the same love in the restaurant business, haha.
Jee Young and Dyanne make sure to stop by with warm hugs to start my already insane day. Elaine hands me “present number one”; a giant cookie, chocolate mini-muffins, and a beautifully written card telling me how great I am. As the day gets started Adrienne shows up and hands me breakfast (what?!), chocolate chip pancakes— start drooling, they were delish.
It’s not even nine o-clock yet. I walk back into my classroom to grab my water (my kids were over in Elaine’s room rehearsing for our upcoming musical) and there is the most interesting looking “cake” sitting on my desk. Kit Kats forming a circle, held up by a peanut butter concoction, and the center is filled with m & m’s (like I said, ten pounds). Two cards are on my desk from my “birthday buddy”— at work among the teachers, we have secret birthday buddies, only I had a feeling I was going to guess who mine was! Not only was there this ridiculously good tasting “cake”, there was also a beautiful bracelet.
I start receiving anonymous e-mails from a birthday buddy email account. How creative is that? Definitely the give-away though, since my friend (and co-worker) Steph and I are obsessed with watching movie trailers in our free time— she kept me supplied with emails throughout the day linked to trailers of movies I haven’t seen yet, as well as old classics that never die. Steph went above and beyond the call of birthday buddy!
One of my student’s driver shows up (yes, a lot of them have their own “drivers”) in the middle of the day to bring me flowers. Then, Jee Young stops by as the school day is winding down to hand me her “gift number one” (receiving gifts in installments is seriously great!), she discovered an Etsy site where you can custom order stationary (and she talks about it here— check it out!).
Holding my half-eaten strawberry tart in one hand, and my nearly demolished kit kat cake in the other, I start to head for home… then have to turn back because I forgot to print stuff out for small group. I end up
ditching, er finishing the dishes and leaving half an hour later with my bouquet of flowers instead.
Leading small group on my birthday was another huge blessing. Yoonjung hosted it at her amazing apartment in Itaewon. She cooked us dinner and we ate it on her terrace, overlooking the city and watching the night steal across the sky— gifting us with the glow of every building and car. It was so calm, and quiet— we all felt like we had escaped Seoul and were in San Francisco! Ashley snapped pics for me all night as I DIDN’T BRING MY CAMERA (who am I? I always have my camera). Kristin showed up with cake, PURPLE cake. We laughed, we ate, we read our Bible, we ate some more, we prayed, we grew. Three and a half hours later I panicked because it felt like only thirty minutes had gone by and I needed to catch the subway home.
My birthday ended with my nose buried in a book one of my student’s recommended me to read (The Lightning Thief) during library time today, he can’t even read it yet, he just told me his brother loved it.
What’s on the agenda for tomorrow? Oh, yeah. My birthday PARTY. Hahahaha, I am incredibly blessed. I might start crying (but I am on my period so that would totally be acceptable— and the is not TMI, since this is my journal, hehe).
I accidentally started eating the kit kat cake before I took a picture!