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On New Year's Eve 2016 my 30th birthday dreams came true as I sat down to a formal dinner surrounded by my best friends. They traveled to Wilmington, North Carolina from near and far to celebrate life with me and I am so thankful. The evening looked exactly as I had imagined. Bold and feminine floral arrangements made with sultry red and bright fuchsia roses, peonies and greenery. Everyone in formal attire and the table all a glow with candles, dashes of gold, mirrored runners, crystal stemware, fresh flowers, spode china, sterling silverware and one special ginger jar Christmas tree ornament for each guest. It was an absolute blast! My favorite part (aside from decorating the table) was making the giant "30" which sat next to the cake. I made it with a few items I bought at Michael's Craft Store and then I stuck fresh mini roses into the foam with florals pins.
My parents insisted on hosting and cooking the meal so it was truly a family affair. My parents' wonderful friends offered to be the servers which kept things warm and familial. We had cocktails to start and a cheese board for hors d'oeuvres. For the meal, we had an organic mesclun salad with pecans, strawberries and goat cheese. A reverse seared beef tenderloin with french string beans and jasmine rice was the main course and chantilly birthday cake for dessert. We toasted bubbly more times than I can remember and played one of my favorite New Year's Eve games called Two Resolutions and a Lie.
Just after dinner commenced, we produced a mannequin challenge video. You can find the video by clicking here.
Two of my girlfriends gifted me a new Polaroid camera to capture the evening on speed film. We played with sparklers when the clock stuck midnight and made well wishes as we let Chinese sky lanterns up into the air. Late night I took everyone up into my photo studio for formal portraits.
The next morning we followed southern tradition by eating black eyed peas and collard greens with our New Year's Day brunch.
Here's a few images but if you want to see the whole gallery, click here.