January recap: Surprise Date Night, Parties, Weddings and Family

January in review. Turns out one month is a lot to fit into one post – I might have to do these 2-4 times a month going forward!
On New Year’s Eve, Brandon, Erin, Paul, Juvi and I party hopped between house parties (thanks to our fab hosts Jess, Noelle, Brad, Nora and Rusty)!  Brandon and I surprised ourselves by being in bed before 3am, which might be a record for us. We’re clearly not 23 any more. Luckily the only thing on my calendar for 1/1/15 was “Sleep in!”
We celebrated my niece Nara’s 12th birthday that weekend, with our traditional visit to the ice skating rink at Seattle Center, followed by a trip to the birthday girl’s restaurant pick: The Spaghetti Factory. Nara loves maps and geography so we gifted her the game 10 Days Across Europe, which we all have since enjoyed playing. Oma and Opa (my parents) surprised us all by coming back from California in time for the celebration. They had spent Christmas in California with my cousin Laura and her family to help welcome their third son, Bennett, into this world on New Year’s Eve!
On the 10th, my family celebrated a belated Christmas (since B and I were in Philly and Mom and Dad were in California during that time). We had a blast playing games such as 10 Days and Ticket to Ride. Mom made delicious gyros and of course we had to have my favorite guilty pleasure holiday snack – clam dip with potato chips – during game time. The six of us “kids” spent the night and played more games in the morning. Who says Christmas has to happen in December?
Alida, Erin and I had a delicious dinner at Shadowland in West Seattle on Erin’s birthday eve. I already have a trip planned to go back there soon for their mac and cheese and fried green beans! The arugula salad was simple but delicious.
Erin and I spent her birthday afternoon at Olympus Spa, enjoying the hot rooms, hot tubs and hot cast iron bowled bibimbap. Erin spent multiple five minute stretches in the cold plunge pool – a place I have yet to go in more than my ankles! She’s much more hard core than I am, clearly.
Mid-month, a group of us Seattleites made our way to San Francisco to celebrate Brian and Morgan’s wedding at the Legion of Honor. We had a fantastic weekend filled with great food and company. It was wonderful to see these two beautiful people get hitched and so special to be part of that weekend with them.
morgan1
Brandon and I started our monthly “Surprise Date Nights” this month – he went first. We’re rotating each month who surprises the other for a date night. No pressure, the date can be WOW or just dinner, but it hast to be a surprise. He kicked these nights off with an awesome choice: Mimosas with Mama at The Unicorn. Part comedy, part drag routines, part recreation of a movie musical in half an hour. If you like drag, GO. Mamma Mia is their current movie musical (through the end of February). We laughed so much. We went to Grim’s afterwards, who sadly took their french dip off the menu – doubtful I’ll be back even though the food was still good. That was my main reason for going there! I still laugh thinking about the Mimosas with Mama show and do sometimes wish that I could be a drag queen. Thanks for the Surprise Date Night idea, Devin and Lindsey!
We ended the month by seeing Cirque du Soleil’s newest show “Kurios” (which is amazing – review coming soon) and celebrating our friends Rusty and Ryan at their 20s theme birthday party at the Rendezvous in Belltown (the perfect “juice joint” location). Turns out that making up fake 20s slang is a fun party game (“go tend to the garden”). “Bank’s Closed” is my favorite real-20s expression (though a reason for using it doesn’t come up much).
Other highlights:
Mexican food and margaritas with Somer
Catching up with my birth-mom Loa at happy hour
Kathryn and I treated our inner-past-selves to a fun night seeing “Dirty Dancing” at The Paramount.
Chatting with old friends and making new ones at Tom and Leah’s birthday party
Painting pottery with Levy and his girlfriend Jessica
Helping Alida & Will pack up for their move (can’t wait to see how they’ve settled in to their new place).
Puzzle and Rummikub night with Mom and Dad
Opening our 2014 Joy Jar and date night at Zhu Dang
Juvi coming over for game night
Bringing on new client: Capitol Cider!
Books I read:
The Willpower Instinct
Garden Spells
Dark Spaces
Orphan Train
Movies & shows I enjoyed:
Into the Woods
Downton Abbey Season 5
Orphan Black
Alive Inside
The Taste
The One I Love
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