Idea No.

16569

Flirty & Fabulous Party -30yr- Travel Adventure

Award

Date

September 2007

From

Julie in Austin, TX

Honorable Mention

30th Thirtieth Party

So I stole the title from the movie 13 going on 30.  My sister had just moved to a new city and her 30th birthday was coming up.  I knew I needed to do something special.  She wasn't particularly happy with the restaurant choices in her new city.  We have a great selection of locally owned places in Austin, and she was experiencing a little franchise restaurant shock.  Since her birthday was on a Wednesday and I could not travel out of the state (or to Europe) to celebrate with her, I decided to bring the travel to her. 

Each stop along the way, I had a clue as to which country we would be visiting.  I also gave her a passport that I made out of a 5x7 memory keeper scrapbook album.  Each page was a scrapbook creation of menus, stamps, and cutouts of all the stops along the way.  I wanted to take her around and show her that there were great locally owned places to go to in her new home. I searched the internet for all local restaurants and businesses to visit for her birthday.  She chose not to look ahead at everything that was planned, and only read one page at a time.  We started out with makeovers at MAC the night before her birthday.  I gave her a t-shirt that says I'm 29, I swear (cafepress.com).  

We then met her friends at a Spanish tapas bar (SPAIN).  On the way to dinner she opened her clue, which was a Spanish Flamenco dancer fan.  The next morning we woke up bright and early and had dinner at La Madeleine, a French cafe (FRANCE).  Before going to breakfast, she received her clue, blank note cards with the Eiffel Tower and a dark chocolate bar from France (worldmarket.com).  We had delicious quiche breakfast and she opened her next clue which was bath salts and nail polish.  You guessed it, we headed off to a day spa (EUROPEAN).  This was the best part, because she got to be pampered and relax, right in the middle of the week AND on her birthday.  I booked us both mud baths because we'd never done this before, and I knew she would love the idea of a totally new experience.  Then we had manicures and pedicures in a private room, while sipping on white wine. 

After we were fully beautified, we stopped off for a quick bite at a local Italian restaurant.  I gave her a nice bottle of olive oil as her clue.  (ITALY).  In my searching for restaurants, I found a local shopping area called Brownstone Village.  The shops are all crafty, individually owned boutiques, and luckily for my sister, a private winery.  On the way to the shopping village she opened a box of corks wrapped in a shopping bag with London, Paris, Milan written on the outside.  I had pre-arranged with the owners of the winery for them to have a batch of wine ready (her favorite: Shiraz).  When we stopped in that afternoon, she was able to create her own label (she choose: Like a good wine, women get better with age).  She then was able to bottle and cork all the wine and take it home with her.  This was TONS of fun for both of us, and great for her because she really enjoys wine. 

We finished the afternoon perusing all the little shops and picked up a few fun items.  We went back to her apartment to get ready for dinner.  Our mom and grandparents came over for appetizers.  Time for my final surprise.  With the help of my mom, I collected 30 years of pictures.  I scanned them in my computer and my wonderful husband made them into an imovie and set it to music that fit the time in her life.  It started off with Isreal Kamakawiwo Ole's  Somewhere Over the Rainbow and ended with Girls Just Want to Have Fun.  The family watched the movie and the memories were alive.

 I also reprinted all of the pictures and made a 30 page scrapbook, for her 30 years of life (the last page was a picture of the two of use and said I smile because you're my sister, I laugh because there's nothing you can do about it).  We then headed off to a Hibachi grill (JAPAN) for the final stop of our trans-world, 30, Flirty and Fabulous Birthday party.  Oh, and for desert I gave her a giant fortune cookie dipped in chocolate with a personalized message (customefortunecookies.com).  So even though we didn't get to take a fabulous vacation somewhere, we managed to go around the world without leaving her new home.   And she had a blast the whole time.

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