Hi there! How are y’all holding up out there?
We’re moving along here as we enter Week Seven in quarantine. Wow! It’s a strange time to think that this is our new normal, but we’re just taking it all one day at a time and seeing where we land when it’s all said and done! Such is life during a pandemic, I guess.
Thank you for all of the sweet messages, comments, and videos sent my way to wish me a Happy Birthday over the weekend! I didn’t announce it on these parts, but I turned 35 on Saturday and Scott along with loved ones (secretly) helped me make lemonade out of lemons with the perfect, quiet family day to celebrate.
It was definitely a new kind of way to honor a birthday, since we are still in a shelter-in-home status of quarantine here in New York. We just hit Day 45 of being cooped up in our apartment, so a day outside of our two-mile walkable radius in Brooklyn was long overdue!
And by the way, we are very strict about social distancing — despite what it may look like in these photos and being at a beach or out at all right now. We only shop for essential items maybe once a week, one person at a time while wearing masks and gloves, and we always leave Skyler at home. I get out for daily walks, however, which is okay to do for fresh air and exercise. We stay more than six feet away from anyone and take all necessary precautions any time we’re out of our home.
All of that said, I feel extremely fortunate to have spent my birthday outside of our apartment and, even better, near the ocean which always makes my Florida girl heart very happy.
(And don’t let Skyler’s pouty mug fool you — he had the best time of all after he realized that he actually likes wearing his sunglasses.)
Scott surprised me in several ways this year, which is more impressive than usual. He had zero time to prepare anything without me hovering over him, and he pulled off a few big surprises. Here’s a peek into what we were up to!
My 35th Birthday — In Quarantine
I didn’t know much about the day Scott planned for us besides the fact that we were going to have access to a car to do whatever we pleased. Y’all. This is a huge deal, considering we don’t own a car and depend on public transportation while living in New York City.
Getting to drive around and get beyond our Brooklyn borders was a treat in itself since we only walk or run each day, and we are so grateful to our friends who graciously offered to lend their car to us for the day. It felt amazing to get out and on the road again!
As you can imagine, there wasn’t much to do or drive to with everything being closed right now. And that was perfectly fine and to be expected! We set out without any expectations at all, and had a general destination of “somewhere near the water in Long Island” in mind.
It only took a little over an hour to get over to the Bayshore area, and we loved driving through the town while imagining what it must normally look like with businesses open and more people out and about. We felt the closeness to suburbia, and we were only a quick drive over to the Atlantic Ocean.
We drove until we found a main entrance to Fire Island, and I couldn’t give you more details on our whereabouts than that. Walking on the beach was literally the only thing to do within miles, and it was perfect.
It was only Skyler’s second or third time at a beach outside of Coney Island, and it was the first time that he actually enjoyed the experience. He was all about running as fast as he could and loved the sand and sound of the waves.
I’m thankful that the weather warmed up for us that day, and we enjoyed a little under two hours of walking, running, playing, and dipping our toes in the water, sans shoes. That was his favorite part of all, despite the chilly waters!
We didn’t see a ton of people out, which was a good thing. A lot of people were were wearing masks, which was also good, and we brought ours but didn’t get close enough in contact with anyone to warrant wearing them.
As it turns out, a few hours of sunshine and fresh air is just what we all needed for a bit of a refresh during this period of quarantine. And man, I sure do miss the beach.
As the wind started picking up, we realized that dinnertime would be approaching and found the Chowder Bar Restaurant open for curbside pickup to tide us over until we got home.
We ordered a traditional New England clam chowder along with a Long Island clam chowder, which was a mix of Manhattan and New England. Both were delicious, and I would love to visit the restaurant properly in the future to be able to try more menu items.
Skyler happily downed an order of sweet potato fries (with all the ketchup), and we were on our way back to Brooklyn to finish our evening at home shortly after.
Getting hungry again, we ordered delivery from Table 87 and finally got it at about 9:30 p.m. I didn’t even realize how late it was, however, as we were in the middle of a surprise birthday “party” zoom call with several of our friends and family!
Skyler ended up staying away for the start of it at 9 p.m., and what I thought was a casual call with my family turned into thirty plus participants in and out! It was so sweet and a huge surprise! In fact, I took a shower and showed up for my own “party” in pajama pants … which I guess is also on point for the 35-year-old Heather right now.
Scott worked hard to make my favorite cake and gathered a series of birthday wishes on video to share with me later that evening! It was very thoughtful and all of it totaled to being the best birthday I’ve had in a very long time.
I spent all of Sunday doing exactly what I hoped for, which included watching a Disney movie with Skyler, taking an extra long nap with Skyler, and lounging around the apartment. I did a few loads of laundry with a side of wine, but other than that, it was the definition of a lazy Sunday and it’s everything I wanted and needed during this crazy time.
And this, my friends, is 35.
I’m looking back at everything feeling very loved and thankful for everyone in my life. We may not be in an ideal situation right now, but we’re making the most of our time together.
Thank you again to all who reached out to wish me a Happy Birthday! It truly was one that I will never forget, and I appreciate everyone so much.
I hope you’re staying well out there and we’ll chat again soon!