Yeah, I Just Turned 36: Birthday Memories by the Year

A look back at some memorable (+ not so memorable) birthdays from yesteryears.
  1. 1985/5 years old
    Held in our newly built screened-in porch. I had a Rainbow Brite cake. My Mom and her friends painted our faces. (See photo - above: me / below: my sister)
  2. 1990/10 years old
    I had a slumber party — I got to invite 5 friends. One friend got me a pack of sparklers + a Kirk Cameron poster (she was a big fan). There was drama in the middle of the night where half the girls slept in one room and talked about the girls sleeping in the other room.
  3. 1996/16 years old
    My 23 year old friend + neighbor took me to get my license. I drove my Mom's red Chrysler Lebaron convertible for my driving test. That night my sister (14) and I went to the mall + cruised the streets of my hometown (Peoria, IL) while listening to DMB's 'Crash' album.
  4. 2001/21 years old
    I was interning at WFAA in Dallas on their morning show 'Good Morning Texas'. After work, I went outlet mall shopping + drank giant frozen strawberry margaritas w/ my aunt. Two days later, a guy (no hablo ingles) ran a red light and slammed into my car (no hay margaritas implicados). I had a rental (a grey Saturn) for the rest of the summer.
  5. 2006/26 years old
    I was packing up my apartment in Chicago — getting ready for the next week's cross country move to Newport Beach. That night I went out in Wrigleyville and had a big last hurrah. (Note: During the lead-up to my move, the Real Housewives of OC premiered. I will forever attribute this timing/connection to my love for everything housewives + Bravo.)
  6. 2010/30 years old
    My first birthday after my move to Australia. I (reluctantly) said goodbye to the twenties + having a summer birthday (damn Southern Hemisphere living). Took a chilly trip to the Barossa Valley for a fun day of wine drinking + an evening at an old hotel w/ my boyfriend (now husband) and friends. The heat went out in our hotel and I slept in my coat.
  7. 2015/35 years old
    My husband (whose bday is a few days before) and I planned a dinner for 12 friends + then hit the bars of Adelaide after. At 1am my husband fell asleep while sitting at the bar. I continued on without him — playing slots at the casino then wrapped the night with McDonald's in bed at 3am.
  8. 2016/36 years old
    I spent the first half the day flying from LAX to ADL + the second half of the day napping. We had a fire in the fireplace, ordered pizza, and watched The Americans. I was asleep by 9pm. Wild times at 36.