When I was a kid, we had themed birthday parties every year. My mom made the cake while my dad always did the decorating. Im pretty sure I get my baking skills from my mom and artistic side from my dad. His cakes were fabulous. From pirate ships, to an actual barbie doll with the cake made around her to be her dress. They were always perfect.

Well, we don’t do themed parties anymore (but Im sure we’ll start them up again with our own kids one day!), but we always take the time to make it special, no matter where we are, or who we are with.

This year, Colton surprised me with a weekend getaway to Lake Tanganyika. He is always one for cute surprises, but he’s not exactly the best at being discreet. However, this time he totally surprised me!


Friday morning we woke up, I went to get the coffee started, got dressed for the (home) gym, and came back in the room to grab something. After a few seconds I turned around to see Colton laying out clothes on the bed…this never happens. I asked what he was doing and he casually said he was packing for Tanganyika. haha! What?! I asked when we were going and he said that morning. Surprise! He totally got me and it was perfect.


The weather was beautiful, especially since we’ve had nothing but rain for the past few months! We were the only guests so it was very quiet, peaceful and romantic.IMG_6851

Our last night there we went on a sunset cruise. Their neighbors, an older Dutch couple, joined us. This was our first time cruising on Lake Tanganyika and it was absolutely beautiful. We had drinks and appetizers whilst cruising around the islands on the lake. Such a raw, untouched beauty.


Just before the final sunset we parked the boat behind one of the islands. The Dutch couple, who we had just met while boarding the boat, had brought a Chinese lantern with them from Holland. They gave it to me as a birthday treat. What was supposed to be an easy 1-2 person job of lighting the lantern turned into an entire group effort from everyone on the boat! It took about 15 minutes to light it due to the wind and when we finally let it go it drifted up momentarily before slowly plunging into the lake! So it didn’t work out so well for us, but the memories are unforgettable. We were all laughing so hard and had such a wonderful time!


Back on shore, when it came time for dessert, the staff lowered the lights and came out singing ‘Happy birthday’ to me, complete with a sparkler on top the ice cream! It was so special and sweet. I didn’t expect to be so spoiled and celebrated, at least by anyone other than my husband. It was perfect.


The birthday weekend was fabulous. My husband wins the award for best husband of the year!



On my actual birthday (a Monday) Colton had to work – of course – we are grown adults now. But for dinner we made pizzas and cooked them in our clay oven outside and watched The Proposal 🙂


After we ate, Colton had me stay in the room while he went the kitchen to prepare something. He came out singing happy birthday and holding a bowl full of chocolate banana bread (I had made the day before) and ice cream with chocolate syrup, sprinkles, and a candle 🙂 He is the best. I was surprised to see the ice cream because it usually doesn’t exist in our part of the country. Now, its not the best quality or most amazing ice cream, but it was ice cream nonetheless. It was so special!


Needless to say this years birthday was perfect. Full of surprises, new friends, sunny days, candles, and blessings. Year 28 is off to a great start and I have a feeling it will only get better 😉



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