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I would have been a bit happier about your Free Cone Day if you’d still been open when I got there.

It didn’t help that the giant neon sign said OPEN, but that the little one said ‘closed’ and that all the lights were out. And that your website said the store was open until 10pm (according to what Rhiannon found) or 12pm (according to what I found). And it was only a little past 9pm!!!!

I’m holding you responsible for ruining my birthday. (Not really, but if you want to send me a free ice cream coupon, I’m all for that.)

Thus, I’m taking my business elsewhere. Baskin Robins, to be exact. Today is 31 cent scoop day.

I’ll pay 31 cents for ice cream, especially when I can actually get said ice cream.

Hrm,
Sarah

Yes, that’s right. Go to Ben&Jerry’s and get a FREE ICE CREAM CONE!!!

So what did I do for my birthday? I didn’t turn 29 again, for one thing. Give me three years, Brat, and I’ll do it for the first time. However, as John so helpfully points out, I’m now closer to 50 than to my birth. And apparently 55 is the next birthday I get to look forward to, since it’s the next birthday that means something. In this case, I can get Senior Citizen’s discounts.

Anyways, my birthday was low-key and fun, just what I wanted. Minimum amount of time spent at work, then pedicures with Amelia. Hey, after that bike ride, we totally deserved to have someone rub our calves and feet, right? And now our toes are pretty, too. Then Thai food with Amelia, John, James, Cara, Nate and Shelly. Small and perfect and lots of fun. Amelia and I were both pretty tired, so dinner didn’t last too long, but James did manage to get the restaurant to put together a birthday dessert. In this case, fried bananas and ice cream. Mmmm.

Today, there’s cake at work, and ice cream tonight with Steven, Rhiannon and Sam. And John, when he gets done at work. And Amelia, but she’s opting out to go see some friends that just moved and are totally excited about showing her their new house. I had her last night, they can have her tonight, so it’s all okay.

AND DID I MENTION THAT THE ICE CREAM WILL BE FREE? AT BEN AND JERRY’S? FREE CONE DAY? YES? OKAY.

I also talked to my parents, sister, and grandparents, who are all in various stages of doing as well as can be expected. Amy just ran a half marathon, so she and I are both in that horrible “moving like we’re 97” stage of recovery, Mom’s doing okay but has some cankor sores acting up, Dad’s fine though a bit forgetful and didn’t include me on the “here’s what the family is doing and by the way happy birthday to Sarah” email, and my grandparents are just slowing down. But it was good to talk to all of them.

Now I’m contemplating putting my head down on my desk and napping until cake time. Gotta save up energy for all of that digestion!

Amelia and I survived the Wildflower ride. And we’re still speaking to each other, which is a bonus.

She biked a century (100 miles). I biked 70 miles (just over a metric century). Both personal bests. We both climbed between 4000 and 5000 feet on our bikes. Again, both personal bests. And we have pretty jerseys to show for our endeavor. And water bottles (clear, very necessary) from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Now, as I don’t want to spend my birthday bitching, we’ll leave the ride at that. There will be rants stories to come, as in “Dear Chico, Up yours. Hate you, Sarah and Amelia.”

But on to happier topics!

Like me! It’s my birthday and I’ll do what I want to!

I already got my first birthday present, a pair of new bike gloves from Amelia. They’re pink! To go with my pink jersey. I love them. And the brand new padding in them? Was awesome for yesterday. Thanks again, chica.

What to do with today, though? I woke up about 8:30 when John’s alarm went off, then dozed until 9:15, and now sitting on the couch sorting through emails and blog posts.

I’m debating going into work. It doesn’t seem necessary. (It is, and I’ll go in shortly, just as soon as I manage to peel myself off the couch, shower, bathe in aloe, swig as many ibuprofen as I can swallow in one go, and manage to get out the door.)

There’s Thai food tonight, with Amelia and John and James and Cara and Nate and Shelly.

And really, I haven’t been feeling all that celebratory lately, so low-key is fine. I’m going to rest on the laurels I created yesterday for awhile, I think. I’m damn proud of us for what we did.

Also, there will be pictures of the new hair to come. And some “old hair” shots if I can find any that are appropriate.

With that, I’ll leave you this: Two beautiful Cinderellas, Sarah and Amelia, happy at the end of a bike ride (and yes, on the Cinderella Ride, not in Chico):
Sarah and Amelia

Amelia and I are off to do the Chico Wildflower Ride.

100 miles.
35 more than the Cinderella.

4200 feet of climbing.
3000 more than the Cinderella.

88 degrees.
20-25 degrees more than the Cinderella.

I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the day before my birthday.

Let’s ride!

About 3 years ago, Amelia and her ex helped me completely rip out and redo our backyard. (Ohmygod, thank you so much again!)

Our backyard is tiny, maybe about the size of an apartment living room, but I love it. We’ve got an apple tree, and another tree that likes to drop leaves/little tiny fruit things all over the yard all the time. And a bush of some sort.

When we moved in, that was about all there was.

Except for all the dead plants. And some big leafy things that I didn’t particularly like.

So, armed with Home Depot supplies, the three of us attacked it one weekend (John was at work and excused from the insanity). It took us all weekend. And both of them were still speaking to me by the end of it, miracle of miracles.

We pulled out all the dead stuff. We removed the big leafy shrub things, which had root systems as big as what was above ground. We actually broke a shovel trying to remove the roots of one. Not the wooden part, the metal part. Of a shovel. (Yes. True story.) Anyways, we finally got everything out.

Then we had to level the damn thing. And it turned out that some previous resident and put down a grass mat thing, which probably was supposed to plant grass, but the grass had long since died and all that was left was a green mesh about 1/2 an inch below the soil top. That was fun, let me tell you.

In the time since then, we’ve put in a border, planted lilies (pink, purple, reddish, white), standing fuchsias (love those things), azaleas (white), geraniums (pink, another pink, another reddish pink), and all sorts of stuff. There’s grass in the middle, which is mostly alive, depending on how long it’s been since we’ve watered.

The trees are still there (duh). As is the large bush.

And the only other thing that we left in the whole yard?

Was a wild rose.

Only for the last 3 years, John and I have been having the same argument.

He thinks it’s some weed. I point out that it’s got thorns. He says a lot of stuff has thorns. I tell him the leaves look like wild rose leaves. He asks how I know. I tell him I spent part of a summer in Minnesota, where those things run amok. He asks how come it isn’t blooming. I have no comeback.

Until today.

Yes, folks, my wild rose is blooming. White and pretty and awesomely gratifying.

Victory by any other name wouldn’t smell this sweet.

Remember how I was going to get my hair cut on Wednesday?

Before I left….

“I’m off to get all my hair chopped off.”

“All of it?”

“Well, I might leave an inch or two.”

Apparently, when I decide to go short for the first time in 12-13 years, I don’t hold back. An inch is not far off in some places, especially the back, where it’s bobbed. My hair has not been this short since middle school. But it’s cute, and it’s growing on me, and I even managed to style it this morning after a bunch of tips from Amelia.

And after that, I had 5 glasses of wine (wine tasting event followed by dinner, I’m not a complete lush…yet). And a beer last night (carb loading for our bike ride, clearly).

When I apparently decide I like wine and beer, I don’t hold back either.

Or maybe it’s just been one of those weeks. Or one of those years.

But happy thoughts!

Cute new hair cut. Fun night out with John and Amelia and Alexander. Watched our intramural team win their soccer match yesterday. Good pizza and beer with Amelia and some other friends we ran into at Gordon Biersch last night. It’s going to be a predicted 89° in Chico on Sunday. It’s Friday and the weekend is here. Half my cloning worked.

And then this:
Balding penguin’s wetsuit lets him swim again

How awesome is that?

I’m not in lab. That’s right, I’m playing hookie. Or working from home, if you will. Annoying labmate was getting to be too much, and ex-labmate (she who screwed me over on my project) was coming by to visit and likely ask how things were going. So I chose to not go in and work at home.

And it helps that I had a nice breakfast. Soft boiled eggs over toast. Thanks, Daddy. I love that dish.

And I’m going to get my hair cut in an hour or so. If only I had remember this *before* slopping conditioner on my head. They’re going to wash my hair in just about 2 hours. It should just about be dry then.

And I’m going to wine tasting/dinner up in the city with John and Amelia and Alexander. We all need this break, and it’s going to be so tasty and fun.

It’s going to be a good day. I’m off to get it started.

Please let the San Jose Sharks win tonight.

For James’ sake.

For Cara’s sake in dealing with James.

Please?

Thanks!

Love,
Sarah

P.S. If you could speak with the Weather Gods and arrange for the weather to be nice in Chico (which is where James used to live, so it’s all connected) this weekend, that would be awesome. Thanks!

P.P.S. This is an awesome quote from the announcers: “So-and-so had the puck, then saw So-and-so coming in on his left, and jumped away from it like it had the Ebola virus all over it.”

Not that I’m a giant dork, but still!

Especially not after our disastrously cold and windy current weather, or our just-plain-cold weather for the Cinderella Ride.

But the predicted high for Chico on Sunday for the Wildflower Ride is up by 6 degrees from yesterday’s to a beautiful 85°, and, more importantly, the predicted wind is down by 4mph to 8mph. A nice breeze, that. And the precipitation is only 10% chance instead of 20% chance.

I’m starting to look forward to this.

(Dear Weather Gods, Please DO NOT take this as a sign to screw with these predictions. Thanks. Love, Sarah)

It’s not that I think James Blunt’s musical talents are bad, it’s just that his lyrics are crap.

Singing, fine. Lyrics, crap.

However….

He was on the Top Gear episode we watched last night, and was actually quite funny. He also told the story of how his sister and brother-in-law met due to him.

Apparently his sister needed to get to a funeral, only the pilots were on strike and the ferries weren’t running. So JB put his sister’s plight on eBay.

“Damsel in distress seeks knight in shining armor.”

And this guy bid on her, and out-bid everyone else.

And flew her there in his helicopter.

And they got married. 

Awwwwww.

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