30 Years, One Month, One Week and A Day Old

Life has its ups and downs but I’m not one to complain.  I turned 30 a little over a month ago…one month, a week and one day ago to be exact and I’m enjoying every bit of being 30.  I don’t feel 30 nor do I feel like I need to act 30 (and I for sure do NOT look 30), but there’s something comfortable about being my 30-year-old self.  Perhaps there’s so much to look forward to in the next decade before I turn 40?  Or perhaps, I had the most amazing time celebrating this new decade of my life?  What’s not to celebrate though? I mean, I am so blessed from head to to with tons of family and friends, a fiance who loves me even on my not-so-good days, a pretty cool job or two or five of them actually…

I picked up this new trend of celebrating my birthday all month long shortly after I graduated from college because quite frankly, I was sick and tired of spending the first part of December studying for finals, the middle of December moving home for the holidays and shopping for Christmas gifts, then getting ready to go back to school towards the end of the month.  So, I put my foot down and made it a point to celebrate me all month long when I turned 27.  Ok, maybe not put my foot down but I really did want to spend the whole month celebrating my birthday.   My birthday celebrations are never really about me though…it’s more about sharing the blessings I’ve been given in life with others.  And, what’s been nice about December is that it has become a month that represents “giving back to the community” in my family.

Those who knows me personally knows that I love finding ways to give back to the community.  So when December rolls around, my family and friends get quite excited about what’s on the Kimmie charity project list.  December 2010 is one month long celebration that I don’t think I will ever forget.

Through my non-profit work, my birthday month jump started with holiday home decorations (home exterior) for five families who are currently caring for children diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition.  With the help of 30 amazing teens and adult community members, we decorated five homes in two days (Dec. 4th-5th).  Then, Ken and I were invited to join these five families and our youth leadership team for an intimate holiday dinner (Dec. 6th) where Santa made a surprise visit with tons of goodies for each child patient and his/her sibling!  On the 9th, TLIBF opened its “LIB Wrapped” location at The Shoppes in Chino Hills.  Later that week my family members volunteered  at our foundation’s gift wrapping fundraiser event.  The 3-week long event raised funds to help us fund our 2-day outdoor decorating event.

By mid-month, I was pretty exhausted but the show had to go on!  On the 11th, my cousin Vi hosted a Holiday Cocktail Party featuring Kimmie’s Bargain Boutique and Your Sweet Treat products. We entertained more than 30 guests and razzle dazzled them with our unique craft and stories.  Proceeds from my portion of the sales will go towards purchasing reading resources and craft supplies for cancer patient children and their families at a local hospital.  I’m super excited about this project!

The following day (Dec. 12th) I was in for a huge surprise.  Ken was so sweet.  He coordinated a surprise birthday dinner for me at the Cheesecake Factory.  I was so tired that day that I didn’t even realize that we were driving behind my cousin’s car in the parking lot, nor did I question why Ken was driving around in circles around the parking lot or find it weird he was stalling for time the whole afternoon when I already told him I was starving!  Hehe. It was such a lovely surprise though. Forty of our family members and friends showed up to celebrate my 30th with me.  I can’t even imagine how Ken was able to get everyone together on such short notice and working around my crazy schedule (I can’t even keep track of myself sometimes!).  As much as I love creating beautiful experiences for others to enjoy, it was nice to take a moment and enjoy precious moments with my family and friends…we’re like one big happy village family.  =)

On my actual birthday, the 13th, Ken came home early from work to pick me up for dinner.  Sushi, one of my fav!  From the 40 person surprise birthday dinner and a romantic dinner for two, we moved to the “Kimmie Holiday Sweatshop Birthday” party the following weekend.  Well, I called it “Kimmie’s Whimsical Winter Wonderland” but I put everyone to work! Keke.  Ken bought me a beautiful Christmas tree (we hadn’t had one since forever!) and I decorated it with lace and satin and pearl and glitter and everything cute and whimsical that I could afford!   The house was filled with just us kids.

The most precious moment of the party was when my nieces and nephews, ages 5-7, got down and dirty to create Christmas cards and wrapped Christmas gifts for children at the Los Angeles Mission.  We paired them with a few of my cousins for guidance, but you can tell that they LOVED every bit of it.  I remember my niece, Nicole, asking me after she was done with her 5th Christmas card, “What’s next auntie?”  To me, that was priceless.  This was my mini lesson on giving back to those who needs it more than we do.  Together, my nieces and nephews wrapped close to 60 gifts for homeless children.

My birthday month long celebration continued through the end of the month with fundraisers, shopping sprees, a family Christmas brunch, and Vegas…and there’s still so much more to look forward to in 2011!

Love,
Kimmie

Family Background:
December 13, 2010 would’ve also been my mom’s 32nd anniversary of living in the U.S.  My mom was sponsored by a nice family and arrived in the states on December 13, 1978.  Exactly two years later in Louisville, KY, my parents held me in their arms counting my tiny little fingers and toes.   They always wondered how on earth will they raise this premature 4lb 6 oz baby girl.  Thirty years, one month, one week and a day old…they are now looking forward to the day I walk down the aisle to marry the son-in-law they’ve always wanted.

Comments

  1. Hello Kim

    When I read a story like that it really makes me smile and appreciate everything you did in December. You really should be commended highly for all that. As your well aware of I know just how great the Holiday Cocktail Party went and saw quite a few photos rom Jas and I was very impressed with what both of youaccomplished and just how hard the two of you worked in getting ready for it.

    The gift wrapping at the mall really intrigued my sister Keilani and she talked with Jas about it many times. She was trying to find an organization like that in Cincinnati where she lives to be a part of it but din’t find one 😦 She said maybe next year she’ll organize something like that on her own.

    What Ken did? Nice. Big props to him as well.

    Finally a tip of my hat to your mom. You’ve told me before what she meant to you and what she still means to you. It’s the same feeling we have for our mom who passed away a couple years ago.

    December was an amazing month for you and here’s wishing you a fantastic 2011. And if I know you it will be a fantastic year. Happy Belated 30th Birthday.

    Take care,

    Guy 🙂

  2. Hey Guy,

    Thanks for keeping up with KBB and YST and cheering us on! I just feel so blessed that I am able to have so many ways to give back. Nothing beats waking up in the morning excited to go to work and just have to worry about how to make someone else’s day better. Kind of a dream job for me, ya know? =)

    I think that your sister can always get a small group of friends who shares her passion and get a project going. My charity work started with my 27th bday and now it has become tradition for me. She can always check with department of social services and see what programs or non-profit orgs are around that focuses on women, children, community building. I would also check in with the local hospitals and see what programs they have that she can volunteer for. Working with kids are my favorite so I like looking into pediatric care. OR she can set up her own gift wrapping services for a week during December and just donate the $$ to a charity of her choice. Possibilities are endless! I’ll look forward to your update about what she will do!

    Cheers to 2011!
    Kimmie

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