Sometimes I wish I could wear one of those helmets with the cameras to record what a day in my life is like right now. The vast, vast majority of the time, I’m supremely happy and fulfilled. Today, as I was loading the groceries in the back of my car, sun shining down on my back, and I was thinking about the fact that the kids were at the park with my husband and I was so happy to have an hour to myself. (For those of you who don’t know me, I love food shopping. It’s like an extension of cooking for me and generally relaxing.) I was just feeling really really content. As I drove home, reveling in the moment, the feelings, I heard “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors. And I started to think about the best days of my life thus far.
10. The day I graduated college/The day I got my masters
I’m lumping these two together, because in my mind they’re co-mingled and, for some parts, I can’t remember which one is which. But, on both of these days I know I was really proud of myself and felt a certain sense of accomplishment. Not everyone earns a college degree and then a masters degree. Not everyone gets to walk across the stage at Radio City twice to accept said degrees. NYU does graduation right. Lots of pomp and circumstance that just adds to overall experience.
Most of what I remember from my undergrad graduation has to do with the ceremony in Washington Square Park. It was May 16, 2002 and it was a gorgeous, sunny, spring day. I spotted my mom and dad as they made their way into the park. We couldn’t see each other in the sea of purple caps and gowns, but they cheered when the School of Education was conferred. I went to the School of Ed’s smaller graduation at Radio City but I don’t remember much of that.
Four years later I graduated from NYU again–this time with my masters. I opted out of the Washington Square Park craziness because I’d done it once before, and because it meant taking a second day off work. Instead I just went to the School of Ed graduation at Radio City. It was a chilly May day this time and I remember lining up with my friends, processing in, sitting in our seats and not listening to a word they were saying up on stage. We were just waiting for our names to be called. I remember walking across the stage and getting my diploma and joking that now I was a master at something!
9. The day I closed on my 1st condo
After college I lived with my mom for a month or so, but she was living about 30 minutes away from where most of my friends where, so I quickly realized I wanted to move out and be closer to my friends. An old high school friend had a 3 bedroom apartment and was looking for roommates, so I moved in sometime in June. We had an awesome summer of partying before the real world started in September. The only problem? I started my very first teaching job that fall and my roommate was still unemployed–which meant he was still partying and I….wasn’t. So I started to look for a place of my own. My father, ever the real estate entrepreneur, suggested I buy a small one bedroom rather than rent and throw my money away. His friend, a real estate broker, got me in to see a new-to-the-market one bedroom condo. I made an offer and used my babysitting money from high school as the down payment (it wasn’t nearly 20%, but this was at the beginning of the bubble and it was easy to get a mortgage, as long as you had a job). Two months later I left work early (it was October 10, 2002) to go to the closing for my very first “home”. I remember what I was wearing, but not much else (black, green and off-white striped skirt and off-white cardigan set ~ much cuter than it sounds).
At the time I don’t think I really realized how big it was to be a homeowner at 22. But as I got older and thought about some of the best years of my life, I always thought back to when I was 22. I graduated college, started my first job and bought my first condo ~ all in one year.
8. The day we got engaged
Jon and I had been dating for a year and we’d talked about marriage–a lot. We were on the same page and I knew that a proposal was coming. But I had no idea it would be that night. It was Friday, September 7, 2007…our 1 year anniversary and we ‘d had a little fight earlier in the day and when I called him on my lunch break, he didn’t answer. We were going out to dinner that night — the very same restaurant he took me to on our first “real” date. (Pasta Amore in Piermont, which isn’t there anymore!)
After work that day, we finally spoke and made up from our little tiff (I remember telling him that if he was mad and didn’t want to go out for our anniversary dinner, we could wait till he wasn’t mad anymore. That snapped him out of it!). I remember taking a shower before he picked me and, and as I was shaving my legs, I had a fleeting thought, “I’m going to get engaged tonight”. I quickly pushed it away though, because we’d just gotten over a little disagreement. And I didn’t think he had a ring anyway. (Although I know he knew what I wanted because I found a picture of my perfect ring and emailed it to him. Before you think I’m bridezilla, know that he asked me what kind of ring I wanted. I didn’t randomly send him ring pics!)
When we got out of the car, I was even more sure it wasn’t going to be engagement night because I didn’t see a ring box in his pocket. So, we ate dinner outside and afterwards we took a walk along the Hudson just like we did on our first date. And then he got down on one knee, opened the ring box, said some stuff that I don’t remember, and asked me to marry him. I remember saying “OH MY GOD You’re NOT doing this right now, are you?” which scared him. There were squeals of delight (no tears though, which is odd bc I’m definitely a happy crier) and so much happiness and love. A few people saw the proposal and smiled and waved and cheered for us. After I said yes we called our families and sent texts to our friends and enjoyed all the love and congratulations that were coming our way.
7. The day we got married
October 17, 2008 was a gorgeous fall day and we got married in front of our family and friends. I remember being so calm and happy. Everything, down to the smallest detail, went right that day.
There are a few more, but in the interest of lengthiness, I’ll stop here. Stay tuned for the rest VERY SOON!
AND…another giveaway is coming mid-week next week, so check back!
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