I’m turning 30 and my blog is going to be 10 on April 21. I’m going to be real here — to celebrate both milestones, I really wanted to take a trip with my husband, ideally to Greece or Egypt. A consolation vacation would be a road trip down the East Coast, from Boston, to New York, to Washington DC. I’ve never been to Boston or DC, but have been to New York, but only for work-related activities. You know how much I love playing tourist.
You could say I was really sad? put out? disappointed? dejected? morose? that we couldn’t afford such a trip. You might say I could just have a party, but I have really flaky friends, plus my birthday is always around Memorial Day and everyone always has plans around Memorial Day. I was thinking that I wanted to just skip the whole thing and jump to May 29.
But then I started thinking, dude. Thirty is a milestone, and if you want to celebrate your own birthday, you should, even if no one else will. I mean, c’mon, everyone else I know who has turned 30 or is about to turn 30 is so unhappy about it, or they get all freaked out about not doing everything on their list to do before turning 30. Dude — you’re not dying! And honestly, I am not unhappy about turning 30; rather, I’m totally stoked, because I’ve found that each year just keeps getting better.
In fact, when I started thinking about it, I realized I’m seriously blessed. I have a wonderful husband, a very bad but still amusing cat, a home I enjoy, a job I love. I’m healthy. I’ve done a bit of traveling (mostly for work, but at least I’ve gone to Hawaii for mostly fun!). I have some pretty awesome friends who, even though most of them are far away, love me and are amused with me no matter what time I call. No matter what I have now, I just thank God I’m not where I was even five years ago. Five years ago, I think I was obsessed with an investigative newspaper series that wrung me out emotionally but went completely unappreciated by my editor (not my city editor, though, I think). Thank God I’m not there anymore!
So then I got an idea.
I really can’t take credit for the idea, actually. I got the inspiration for it when I came across this Scripture, Luke 14:12-14:
Then he turned to his host. “When you put on a luncheon or a banquet,” He said, “don’t invite your friends, brothers, relatives, and rich neighbors. For they will invite you back, and that will be your only reward. Instead, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. Then at the resurrection of the righteous, God will reward you for inviting those who could not repay you.”
That was Jesus talking, in case you didn’t know, and I really feel His idea is exactly what I’ve been looking for. So that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to put on a luncheon for the clients of the Union Station Foundation of Pasadena, and I’m inviting you to join me.
How did I choose Union Station? When I was mulling the idea, my pastor’s mother-in-law mentioned that she had been supporting Union Station for the past 10 years. Good enough for me! So the day after I had the idea, I emailed Union Station inquiring if I could have a birthday party there. Two weeks later, I was at Union Station’s administrative office, watching their volunteer and kitchen safety DVDs.
On May 24, we (myself, my husband and my church) will essentially give Union Station station’s usual Saturday volunteers the day off and cook for about 150 of their clients. Maybe more, since Saturdays seem to be their open house days. I do plan to decorate, but maybe just balloons. I’d love to have music, but that depends on who plans on showing up.
For my part, I plan to use some of my own money (thanks to my compulsive habit of blogging) to pay for some of the food we’ll be serving. But this is where I need your help.
I would love to have my friends — whether they be offline or online — who can make it show up with a dish. Just let me know in advance what you are planning to bring. If you’d like to help serve, that would be great too! If you’d like to help cook, I think we can make room for you, although we’re limited to about 10 to 15 in the kitchen.
Even if you can’t come, because of work, a planned vacation or whatever, but you still want to contribute, that’s doable too. You can make a donation via Union Station’s donation page. While its not necessary, the donation can be made in honor of my birthday, and if you do choose that option, I’ll send you a thank you card! For those of you who can hire someone, working with Union Station’s Job Seekers is another way to help. Or you can check out their Wish Lists and see if there’s anything you can give there.
If you want to be included in my Evite, please leave a comment (or go to the Evite!). I’ll be sending it out later tonight. Happy Birthday to meeeee!
(Oh, and by the way, this is NOT an April Fool’s joke.)