To be 100% honest, I wasn’t looking forward to turning 26. I love birthdays and I love celebrating another year of life, but with everything going on, it was hard to get excited. We couldn’t make very many plans because of baby things and money things. And turning 26 seemed…well old ha! Yesssss I know in a few years I’ll give anything to be 26 again, but you catch my drift. Turns out, turning 26 isn’t so bad after all.

The Saturday before my birthday, Juan woke me up and told me to get ready because we were going to breakfast. He wouldn’t tell me where and he wouldn’t tell me with who. When we hopped in the car he made my put a blindfold over my eyes — which I repeatedly asked if I could remove.We drove around for a good 10 minutes and I could tell he was trying to confuse me, because my keen sense of direction knew he was taking some random and unnecessary turns. Finally, we stopped and he led me (still blindfolded) out of the car and into what seemed like a a house. It was silent for a few seconds until a little voice yelled, “Haley!!” I knew it could only be my favorite 2 year old.I took off my blindfold and was greeted by a room filled with some of my favorite people. In a house that was literally 30 seconds from ours, so Juan was just buying some time haha, but it really did throw me off! I was totally surprised! Special shout out to Sharol who knows how much I love friends, breakfast, and birthdays and put the whole thing together. It made me feel so special and it was just what I needed. It was also just what Juan needed because he hates planning/coming up with things. We both owe Sharol big time! But waffles and good friends truly make the world go round. 

Something my Grammie + Gramps have always done, since I was in elementary school, was take each of the grandkids out on their birthday. I have so many special birthday memories with them, going to the zoo, painting pottery, goofy golfing, etc. And I love that they’ve stayed true to the tradition, even when I’m 26! This year Grammie wanted to take me shopping anywhere I wanted, so naturally I chose IKEA. We had quite the adventure eating at the food court and browsing the giant store. If I had a dollar for everytime Grammie asked if we were going the right way…Again, I always love a good afternoon with these two and feel lucky to still be able to do so!The days leading up to my birthday, Juan and I made sure to hit up all the free food spots. Because, who can pass up food that is free? And delicious. Oh, I did I mention free. 
The day of my birthday, we went to church in the morning and then had family dinner at Juan’s house. My mother-in-law Celia made me my very favorite Mexican meal, entomatadas. I quite possibly could eat it every single day. She and some of our other tia’s also made me a beautiful homemade cake! Tia Macre made all of those flowers by hand out of fondant! Later that night, we went to my parents and had cheese and chocolate fondue then we played some games. So it was a perfect day filled with food and family–my very favorites!And of course, Juan got me my very first pair of Jordan’s for my birthday so now I can be cool like him. 

 

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