2005 v. 2015: My Homecoming Ten Years Later–Happy Birthday to Me

Turning 31 today was wonderful.  In fact, my whole weekend was great.  Last night, my family and I went out with some friends to a local pub.  Our kids got along well and I didn’t drink in excess.  However, I enjoyed watching my drunk husband…haha.  It was a good reminder of when we were dating.  He helped me out one night when I was incredibly drunk and our Marines planned an outing to the nearby Islands restaurant by our base for one of the Marines’ birthday.  I spent the night sitting out in the parking lot and he stayed with me.  I don’t know if anyone brought out food for him but I was too drunk to want food.  On a separate occasion, I stayed with him after he drank too much.  Last night I was his DD and our daughter did great staying up until almost eleven.  Normally, I wouldn’t let her stay up that late but it was a special occasion celebrating a friend’s 35th birthday (February 25th).

I was fortunate to speak to my twin earlier today as well.  We both mentioned the fact we cannot recall the last birthday we spent together.  I think it might have been our 18th.  She is still in Rhode Island with most of my family.  As kids there was one birthday where we thought about making each other the same black bottom cupcakes we saw in one of my mother’s cookbooks.  Perhaps the next time we are together again, we can make them.

Ten years ago, I came home from my first Iraq deployment so today will always be special for that reason as well.  Below are a few photos I took of that adventure.

image3 image2 image1

I didn’t write a journal entry that day but I wrote about how wonderful my homecoming experience was thanks to the Marines I traveled home with, the veterans who greeted us in Bangor, Maine and my work crew at 1st Marine Division:

Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 7.54.48 PM Screen Shot 2015-03-01 at 7.55.06 PM

Today was all about spending time with my family except for the portion of my day spent finishing up homework for my class ending on March 3rd.  We are hoping to add a fuzzy family member to our family this year and met up with a local dog breeder for an hour today.  My husband and I were were truly impressed with their dogs; honestly, I’ve never met a breed of animal whose personalities varied so much.  We met one of their alpha females and a second female, whose temperament we liked better.  Thankfully, we are ok with waiting if the latter doesn’t produce a litter until later this year.

We also enjoyed lunch today at one of my favorite places, Liberty Market.  Normally, it’s one of our breakfast spots but they offer a $10 birthday discount so we finally went in for lunch.  We always have great service there and the food is incredible.

Aren't these beautiful?!
Aren’t these beautiful?!
I love this chocolate cake; we enjoyed a slice to celebrate.
I love this chocolate cake; we enjoyed a slice to celebrate.
Salt River Bars...because I'm always mentioning these things when we go there for breakfast.  It's ok.  It's my birthday.  I can have two desserts.
Salt River Bars…because I’m always mentioning these things when we go there for breakfast. It’s ok. It’s my birthday. I can have two desserts.
Farmer sandwich with the side of the day.
Farmer sandwich with the side of the day.

It’s been wonderful enjoying a quiet day with my family. We’ve had a lot going on with our classes. I’m happy for the chance to enjoy slowing down, spending time with friends and my family, and taking the weekend off from work. Sorry I don’t have a photo of my family and I to commemorate this weekend. I like taking photos more than my family does. We’ll get an updated one here soon.

~Cheryl

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