{A Birthday in the Time of Quarantine}

I think we can all agree that it pretty much sucks this year to have a March birthday. Mine was three weeks ago, on March 12th, and it was the day everything started to change. Initially I had been excited, because our Parent/Teacher Conferences were cancelled for safety reasons. But that also meant I no longer had to work late on my birthday. However, it was also the day the restrictions began: Broadway shut down as well as tons of other gathering places. This was just the beginning of this crazy journey.

I was supposed to celebrate my birthday this year at the TWA Hotel, dressed in my finest Mrs. Maisel-inspired dresses and having fantastic retro cocktails and food in a glorious mod setting, but given everything that was going on, I had to cancel. We were going to have cocktails on a retro airplane! And we still will, we just were not able to do it near my birthday. But it will happen!

I mean, can you even??? I will get there!! (This is a stock image from google.)

Thus, my birthday celebrations turned into something very different from what I was anticipating, and the silver lining is that I got to celebrate three different times!

The first was lunch on my actual birthday. Because the parent teacher conferences were being done remotely, this allowed the opportunity to go out to lunch with friends. We went to Sidecar in Park Slope and had a nice lunch – and still got home before 3:00!

By Saturday the 14th, school still wasn’t cancelled and while gatherings were reduced, they weren’t strictly taboo yet (though I will admit I wasn’t sure I wanted to post about it as I didn’t want to be judged for going to a restaurant at the time). However, my mom and my aunt treated me to dinner at Balthazar to make up for having to cancel my hotel birthday.

I spent the day leading up to the dinner working on a Deer and Doe Magnolia Dress, a project I had cut out but had yet to start working on. I didn’t intend for it to be worn to dinner, I just initially wanted to get some sewing done for the day, but at some point the turnover happened and it became a challenge, and so I wore a new dress to dinner.

Dinner itself was fantastic. I’ve been to Balthazar before and absolutely love it, but I hadn’t gone in many years and it continued to live up to the hype. I adore French food, and they have all my favorites: escargots, steak frites with bearnaise and chocolate pot de creme. It was the perfect birthday meal, worth every single bite.

So while it wasn’t the birthday celebration I had been looking forward to since Christmas, it was lovely – with amazing food! I’ve already decided that once restaurants are up and running again, I want to bookend this craziness with another trip there.

When the call came that school would be done remotely, I high-tailed it to my sister’s house upstate where I could isolate myself away from other people for as long as necessary. The first weekend, my sister threw me a little birthday party with her family. My niece and nephew made me a stylish birthday crown.

We had homemade mushroom fettucine and a chocolate cake. I got to celebrate with family, and really is there much more a person can ask for? Making the best of crap situations is one of my specialties but man is it getting tested right now!

Oh and I completely forgot! I also did a pre-birthday lunch with my dad on March 7th at Fogo de Chao, and ate all the meats in the world. I have been wanting to go for a long time and we finally did it for my birthday (my dad and I have a tradition of going to a steakhouse every year for my birthday).

When this post goes up, I will be on my 15th day of quarantine; I have not left my sister’s property since March 19th. Thankfully none of us have been sick beyond seasonal allergies. We are continuing to quarantine while school is cancelled, staying at my sister’s until it’s safe for me to return to my apartment. I miss it, but I’m also so thankful to have a place to be!

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