I turned thirty in 2020, at the height of another spike in COVID cases in mid-December. Ugh. It wasn’t exactly what I had expected after thinking all of my best thoughts about being thirty, flirty, and thriving. I definitely didn’t feel flirty or thriving on my birthday. It was just another Wednesday doing my laundry chores while balancing work appointments and school pick-up. To be fair, my birthday is nine days before Christmas, so even during a “normal” year, it is difficult to fit a birthday party in between Christmas parties and family holiday functions.
Thankfully as regular as Wednesday was on the actual day, my birthday celebrated one month later was anything but average. My college friends started Coterie, which means a small group of people with shared interests or tastes. Think backyard fine dining you don’t have to coordinate, cook, or clean up after. It is truly as good as it sounds!
With my ball gown on, I put on my flats and stepped into my backyard to enjoy a private fine dining experience with my husband under the stars. The Coterie team made a menu full of my favorites–think crab cheesecake #drooling, and kept the wine flowing while I worried not about a messy kitchen or getting a designated driver.
My backyard was transformed with cafe lights, pictures of my husband and me throughout our relationship strung up to enjoy a walk down memory lane, and a customized playlist to include our personal favorites tunes. It was the perfect date night that I didn’t even know I needed.
You’ll notice in my pictures our son’s swing set in the background and our dog at our feet all evening, but all of those little touches of reality made me realize it wasn’t all a dream. I realized how blessed I am to have a husband and friends who want to celebrate for me and with me. With the main course wrapping up the Coterie team served us champagne and king cake fireside (they provided the fire + pit) so we could indulge in the sweets while they cleaned up. From start to finish the amount of care and excellence that went into this experience was immeasurable. I know bigger birthday parties are to come in future years, but in light of COVID my husband and friends have gone above and beyond to help me transform into my best thirty, flirty, and thriving self!
No dishes were cleaned by any mothers in the making of this magical night.