It’s Not Always About Me…(Birthday Edition)

Well, it IS…but you know, I have to be nice and unselfish and all that sometimes… 🙂  (Kidding!)

If you can’t tell, I love birthdays.  Well, of course I love my own, but I also love celebrating other people’s birthdays.  I remember everybody’s birthday AND how old they are.  And I have no problem reminding people just how old they’re getting.  So much so, Southern Dad calls me by his cousin’s name who remembers just how old everyone is. 

When my uncle turned 40, I wanted to throw him a surprise party (I was almost 10; his birthday is April 4).  So I told my mom, and we were able to gather up all of our family members and get them in on the surprise, too.  My mom told my uncle we wanted to invite him over for dinner (I think), and boy was he surprised when he walked through our front door!  We had decorated the house with black balloons that were akin to “Over the Hill” and other black and white balloons and streamers signifying just how old he was getting. 🙂 

Southern Mom’s birthday is in August, and for once, since I went to college, I was going to be home on her birthday.  So I wanted to surprise her with a dinner out a nice Chinese restaurant in my hometown.  Once again, I was able to get our whole family in on it.  I reserved a private dining room, ordered a cake from Publix (I love that place), and ordered balloons.  The plan was for my mom to hang out with my aunt that Saturdayafternoon, I pick up everything, then the 3 of us meet up for dinner.  Yeah, Southern Mom wasn’t having that.  She missed her baby and wanted to spend time with me….ok, time to re-strategize.  So very discreetly in my grandmother’s living room, my aunt and I decided SHE would pick up the cake and balloons and meet us at the restaurant.  I asked my family to get there early, as I wanted my mom to be totally surprised…and she was!!! (Mission accomplished!)  (Even though one of my cousins was a little tardy and pulled up when we did.)  My mom was very grateful, and she enjoyed herself. 

Birthdays are definitely a time of celebration, fun, family, and friends!  Have you ever had a suprise birthday party? Or did you throw a bash for a loved one?  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

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Southern Girl Event Review-The Park Unplugged

Ryan Leslie

Imagine being at a performance of one of your favorite musical artists.  You’re standing right in front of the stage and singing along with the artist (and the rest of the audience).  As you look around the venue and continue singing, you all of a sudden feel hands on your chin.  When you turn, you see the artist has gotten your attention by moving your face towards his, is looking you in the eye, and is singing to you.

That’s exactly what happened to me on Friday.  As I was singing “Addicted” and jamming by myself in the audience, Ryan Leslie started singing to me.  Needless to say, that was the highlight of my night, and I was beaming the rest of the weekend!  All in all, I had a great time at The Park Unplugged.  My new partner-in-crime, AGinDC, went with me, even though she wasn’t familiar with Ryan’s music.  I think she left quite pleased. 

I do have some gripes, and I’m not sure if the first one was because of the venue or the event promoter.

Gripe 1: The event didn’t start on time.  I arrived around 6, early enough to grab a cocktail and to get a good view of the stage.  The 3rd floor, where the concert was held, didn’t open until after 7, when Ryan was supposed to perform. 

Gripe 2:  There were too many opening acts.  Now, I’m all for supporting local artists, but I wasn’t interested in them.  I wanted to see Ryan Leslie.  Both acts were talented, but because of the fact that I was ready for the main event, I was over both of them.

Gripe 3:  Security at The Park.  Because I was so close to the stage, I had to move to make a pathway for Ryan (and his entourage) to pass through before and after his performance.  After he was done, a pathway was made for him to walk through.  After everyone left the stage area, I waited a few seconds to see if anyone else needed to pass.  When others started to move, I moved, too.  That’s when I felt a push on my shoulder from one of the security guards.  Yeah, not really necessary seeing as how I’m only 5’4″ and this guy was at least 6′. 

Ryan playing the keyboards

But all of my gripes became null and void, except #3, when Ryan took to the stage.  He was amazing, as he usually is in live performances.  (I saw him in person when I moved to DC 2 years ago.  I was right up on the stage that time as well.)  He played the keyboard, stood on the stage rail, and was very engaged with his audience.  I have to admit, I thought there were a few times that he and I made eye contact (minus the time he was singing to me-I KNOW we had eye contact) even though he had his shades on, and I sang along and smiled at him.  And after looking around, I noticed that I clearly was not the only woman who thought the same thing. 

All in all, I had a great start to Birthday Month!  AGinDC and I made our way to Mellon Auditorium for the Gentleman Jack event, but due to the line being too long and us being old women, we went home.  I had a great, busy weekend.  If you went to The Park this past Friday, how was your experience?  If you’ve seen Ryan Leslie perform live before, what did you think?  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

This Week in the News- It’s Birthday Month!

Happy Friday!  In case you didn’t know, the most important day of the whole year occurs this month…my birthday!!! 🙂  I know there’s tons of things going on in the world, but I’m going to be selfish for a bit and talk about my birthday and the addition of one page to this blog. 

This year’s birthday is a little different for me.  I’m having a party (that’s not new), but instead of asking people to give me gifts, I’m asking my friends to donate to Courtney’s House, which is a non-profit in DC that works with victims of human trafficking.  I met an employee of the agency a few months back, and after listening to their needs, I was moved to do something.  I think this will be a great way to celebrate another year of life with friends and family and give back. 

I must admit that I was having reservations about this party.  Not because of the organization or the venue or the event itself.  It’s a scary birthday. (The Big 2-9).  Yep, I’m almost 30…but we’re not going to dwell on that.  I was experiencing all of these emotions-happy, sad, nervous, apprehension-about reaching the end of my 20s.  I even told a friend that I was tempted to cancel the party because I wasn’t feeling this birthday.  But realizing that this birthday was not about me, but in fact about the numerous boys and girls that will be helped at Courtney’s House, I buckled down, came to my senses, and started the celebration up again.  If you’re in the DMV, or you just want to come in town for the celebration, send me an e-mail.  I’ll forward all of the pertinent information. 

I realize I blog about things that are going on, but I never remind you guys or I never talk about it.  So I’m about to add a calendar page to the blog.  That way you can stay in the know of what’s going on.  And since I know I don’t know everything, I would love for you guys to share things that are going on as well.  The calendar page, which will be titled “What’s Happening” (think T.I.’s song), will change each month. 

And I know what I’m getting myself for my birthday.  I can’t tell you guys (at least not right away), but if done well and correctly, the pay-off could be great, in more ways than one!

That’s all I’ve got for today.  Feel free to share what’s going on your worlds.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

What’s Hot in the Streets

For some reason, I always find out about things that are going on in the city (and elsewhere), but I don’t do a great job of sharing that with you guys.  Mainly because I’m selfish, hate crowds, and like to keep the good stuff to myself.  But I realized it’s not right to be selfish (most of the time), so today I’m sharing some events with you guys that will be going on in the DMV.  And most of them are FREE!

In case you didn’t know, my birthday is next month, and to start Birthday Month off right, tomorrow will be the commencement!  First, Ryan Leslie, one of my favorite singers and an awesome live performer, will be at The Park.  The event will is free; you just have to register here.   The Park can get crowded pretty quickly, so make sure you arrive early!  The next stop on my tour will be the Gentleman Jack-Arts, Beats, and Lyrics event.  Blending hip-hop, paintings, and photography, this is sure to be a pretty cool event, and I’m excited to attend.  When you register, you can bring a guest, but all attendees have to be at least 21. 

Lastly, just so you can get ready, for my friends in Atlanta, Benevole, Inc. is taking their successful fundraiser on the road.  Walk-A-Mile (in Someone Else’s Shoes)-Atlanta will be taking place on Saturday, April 30 at the Westin Peachtree Plaza.  To find out more information you can check out my previous post here and you can find out more about Benevole, Inc. on their site.  If you or your business are interested in serving as a sponsor, feel free to send me an e-mail. 🙂

That’s it for today!  What events are going on in your city?  Or what events did I miss that are happening in the DMV?  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

One of my favorite Ryan Leslie songs!