happy 5th birthday my dear olive!

wow…i can’t believe it’s been five years since this beautiful girl has joined us. it’s surreal. my life changed when she was born. of course it did. but what i mean is…life had meaning. life had purpose. life was fulfilling with her in my world.

in your younger years, you wander. you wonder. you live life self centered. as a mother…you realize that this {having children} is what life is about. my heart is so full and the love that i experience every day is like no other. i feel so incredibly blessed to have her as my child and so fortunate to be able to do this. to raise kind humans and do my damndest to raise someone who can make a difference in this sometimes dark world.

sooooooo, olive’s birthday party turned into a surprise party because i went off of something she said a few months ago. she had watched something on her iPad and said to me, “i want a surprise party!”. i said, “how am i suppose to throw you a surprise party while you’re in the house?” she says, “i’ll just go in my room and when i come out, everyone can say ‘surprise!'” bahahahahahaha! ohmergawd…i LOVE her!!!

so, last minute, i told her guests that it was going to be a surprise party! it worked out perfectly! hc dropped the girls off at my sister, thuy’s place, in the morning. hc and i hustled and decorated the house for the party, readied the apps, and the guests started to flow in. about 15 minutes after the party started, my sister shows up with olive and ellie.

i was so excited. i couldn’t wait to see her reaction! i heard her say to thuy why were there all these cars at our house. ha! she walked in and everyone yelled ‘surprise!’. her facial expression was priceless! i was in heaven seeing her so elated! afterwards, she greeted all her guests and made her way around.

olive chose her brown horse theme. she talked about it for months. months!!! it was the first time she chose her theme, so i was in a bit of a pickle because i have always been the one concocting her themes. now that she is independent and opinionated, she expressed exactly what she wanted for her 5th birthday party and i had to go with it. i was a bit stumped but in the end, i figured it out and we had the most wonderful horse themed party!

side note: i went to party city to get some horse themed balloons. uhhhhhh, i didn’t know they carried NOTHING horse related. whaaaaaaaa?! so, as the young male teenager was ringing me up, i asked him if that was a poop emoji balloon on the wall. he said yes. so i said to him, “i will get that balloon. i can’t believe you guys don’t have anything horse themed for my daughter’s birthday party. i’ll get the poop emoji balloon because i think it’s horse’s shit that you don’t have anything else i can get.” yup. i said that to him. he found it funny too.

well, i hope you enjoy the pics! we had such wonderful time celebrating our baby girl turning 5! happy birthday olive. we are so utterly blessed to have you in our lives. thank you for being you. we love you to infinity and beyond!

via tandeminlove.com[mini horses with mini crowns]

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[the balloon that stood out. she loves hello kitty!]

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[my story about the poop emoji balloon above. tassels by glamfete]

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[flowers by my sister kim]

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[daniel and auntie missy]

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[stop horsing around!]

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[terry, dan, and agata]

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[calligraphy place cards]

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[bandana’s for our guests]

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[banded flatware inclusive of the party theme]

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[easy cups for kids or adults!]

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[horse favor bags]

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[a party staple]

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[i love our fireplace]

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[i heard her asking about all the cars in the driveway…]

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[i love her facial expression when she saw everyone and mine!]

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[i love this]

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[she’s oh so sweet]

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[y’all…i love her so much!]

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[greeting her guests]

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[she’s so sweet]

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[cousins]

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[with ba]

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[grace, annabelle, and edwin]

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[gramma and olive]

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[backdrop by glamfete. she’s such a princess!]

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[oh how i love her so]

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[i can’t post enough pics of her]

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[this is sooooooo ellie and olive]

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[olive showing off her beautiful unicorn painting]

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[here comes the cake]

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[happy birthday day to you!]

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[make a wish!]

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[she’s so silly! her cousin bennett gathered all the horses around olive]

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xoxo

sunday after brunch

weddings are so much fun and what typically comes before and after, makes the weekend that much more special!

my family was excited to host an after wedding brunch at the langham hotel for the newlyweds and our immediate families. it was an early start but so worth it! the hotel staff set up a long table for all of us to sit at. it was perfect. we almost felt like we had our own room {there weren’t many tables next to us, being a large crowd} and our table was right next to the buffet! score!

we reveled in last night’s festivities, we shared stories, and we were all pretty much on high with how fun the wedding was!

i was delighted with the hotel’s brunch set up. everything looked delicious and the service was fantastic. i thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the langham. the staff was so polite, kind, thoughtful, and considerate. they were on top of clearing our plates at brunch, offering us endless amounts of libations {keep the mimosas flowing!}, and so accommodating.

olive was having a blast with the boys and ellie was being doted on by agata and my aunt vuong. win win for this mama! i ran around making sure the girls were good to go with food, drinks, and company and then i finally sat down and enjoyed a scrumptious plate of goodies. i downed the americanos and then sipped on my mimosa…it was all so yummy! of course the kiddos hit up the dessert table! so many sweet treats to choose from!

after a couple hours, we all parted ways to do our own thing {pool time and then we hit up the grove – which was a disaster} and then met back up in the evening for dinner at some crab shack!

that pretty much wrapped up our weekend in LA. it was such an amazing time celebrating huy + tashina. every event we attended was filled with love, happiness, and good cheer!

may your marriage be filled with love, laughter, and full bellies. much love and many blessings to my brother and beautiful sister in law!

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[the amazing dessert bar!!! i had to post this first…it was the first thing we saw when we walked in]

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[dad and mom]

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[best omelet station ever]

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[her superhero cape – a present from uncle khai]

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[good times, good food]

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[a very delicious americano and sugar stick]

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*****

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[this sweet girl looking at herself in dan’s phone]

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[hitting up the grove for the tree lighting ceremony was a huge mistake! it was SOOOOO crowded and they shut down all the stores! whaaaaaaa?! we were there for the shopping!]

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[derek hough]

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[yummy ice cream macaron]

xoxo

hc’s birthday!

happy birthday to the best husband everrrrrrrrrrr!

we had a very low key celebration on his actual birthday but we had a very chill weekend as well. hc requested it so i obliged. we just ordered in and relaxed. of course i decorated and got him the cuuuuutest cake ever!

the night before his birthday, i had snuck home balloons and left them out in the garage. i know he falls asleep so early every single night so i took advantage of that and decorated the kitchen with banners and balloons so he would wake up to a festive, fun kitchen in honor of his day! i wrote him a card and had made him a cutesy crown because he is king on this day!

when hc came home from work…his choice of food was pizza! so, we ordered in and just sat around enjoying each other’s company. olive was very pleased at the idea of pizza! she was so hungry that when the pizza man came and delivered our meal, she ran around screaming, “pizza! mmmmm, pizza!” hahahaha. she’s become such a funny gal! we loooooove her so much.

after dinner, we lit a birthday candle and sang happy birthday to hc. although, olive thought we were singing happy birthday to her! ha! we tried to get her to blow out the candle with hc but she wanted nothing to do with it. of course, after hc blew out the candle and i was about to throw it away, she yelled that she wanted to blow out the candle. so i relit it and she did an excellent job blowing it out on her own! that’s olive for you…she will tell you one thing and then change her mind in two seconds or it’s just a toddler thing. eep!

anyhoo, we had such a wonderful time celebrating hc’s birthday! it was filled with love and laughter, just the way it should be.

happy birthday to the best husband, father, and man in this entire world. you are the kindest, most loving, caring, sweet, and giving man. life is truly complete with you in my world.

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[very true]

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[best babe]

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[cupcake cake indeed]

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[going in for the kiss]

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[she didn’t want to blow out the candle, but as soon as i said that dada could, she was like yeah! and pushed him towards it! ha!]

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xoxo

chillin’

we had a special occasion to celebrate! olivia and aaron bought the condo they were living in, hooray!

we scooted into the city for an early dinner at their ‘new’ place. i brought along a little house warming gift: wine, a candle {’cause you can never have too many!}, and a gc to crate and barrel {natch}. olivia walked me through what they were going to change in their new abode and we dove deep into absorbing discussions. it’s so funny how we gravitate towards he/she convos. aaron and rich/me and olivia. it just happens and that is ok by me. i love my girl time with this lady.

we talked and talked and talked. before we knew it, two hours went by and we didn’t even start dinner! eep! we finally started preparing the main dish {olivia was already putting together the pasta salad} and got things ready to cook.

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[ask me about bruce and the lobster]

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[cheers to their new home!]

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[their first purchase for their new home!]

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[bruce the dog]

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[top chef aaron]

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[he’s dangerous on the dance floor]

everything was super yummy! i loved, loved the kale salad olivia put together. it was absolutely delicious. i am such a huge kale fan. the kabobs were savory and perfect. we ate our meal in delight, enjoyed our silly conversations together, and didn’t realize how late it was!!! boo. we were having such a fabulous time. if we didn’t have to get back to our daughter {haha!} we probably would have stayed for a few more hours!

alas, we had to go. according to my parents, olive didn’t sound too happy mommy was gone. awwww, my poor baby. she has become so attached of late and i love it. she is seriously turning into the cutest thing everrrrrrrr. she’s so animated, communicative, sweet, and loving. i am so in love with her!

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[manger! manger! mmmmmmm]

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[best pasta salad everrrrrrr. i love kale]

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[um, there’s a beak in the way! dinner party shenanigans. we were feeling gooooood]

we said our goodbyes and moseyed on our way home. we love hanging out with these two. such good people and it’s always a great time! congrats on your new maison my dear friends! we are so excited for your new adventure!

xoxo