This year, Southgate Coins is breaking tradition slightly compared to past years when it comes to birthday celebrations. We decided to do things a little differently: we combined Maya, Rusty, and Nicole’s birthdays into one birthday dinner, while still honoring each person on their special day at work (except Rusty, whose birthday coincided with the “annual May Saturday off work.” With so many events in May (Kentucky Derby Day, as well as three birthdays), this plan allowed for a little less running around, and it made for a more focused, relaxed atmosphere between four good friends. Read on for more on how we celebrated Rusty and Maya’s May birthdays.
Generally at Southgate Coins, there is a separate celebration for each person’s birthday, with cake, gifts, music—the whole works. But this time, we got to enjoy a nice dinner at a local restaurant for the three birthdays. We figured this would be just as enjoyable and special, and since we’ve all known each other for at least two years, we wouldn’t be dining with strangers!
The hardest decision was trying to figure out where we wanted to go to for dinner! Maya and I (Nicole) finally decided Outback Steakhouse was our all-time favorite, and we wouldn’t be happier at any other place. We knew we’d be leaving fat and more than satisfied, with glazed over eyes, haha!
As usual, Maya’s birthday came first on May 19th. I surprised Maya by coming in early to be sure she had her pretty, purple plant on her desk (complete with a big purple bow and a Happy Birthday balloon) before she arrived to the store. Later on in the afternoon, Marie and Rusty surprised Maya with a succulent Chocolate Silk pie from Marie Callender’s, topped with extra whipped cream, sprinkles, and MAYA written in red frosting. We each had a piece at lunch. The chocolate cocoa powder and Oreo cookie crust was to die for, mmmm!
Since Rusty’s birthday was the following Saturday on May 21st, we all agreed that a Friday night dinner would work perfectly. The event was on the calendar, and Maya’s and my stomachs were already growling for Australian-American deliciousness.
When Friday came, we got a double-delight. Not only were we to be treated with a dinner out on the town at Outback, but we also got to participate in the traditional Free Lunch Friday. Marie left the restaurant choice up to us, and Maya and I decided on Taco Bell. You know, you can’t really beat a 99¢ burrito and nachos to tide you over until dinner!
Here’s Maya to tell you about the rest of the day:
Thanks Nicole. We were definitely fed well on May 20th! As the workday came to an end, Nicole and I (Maya) started discussing what we’d be munching on that evening. While Marie left to make sure her three pups were fed and occupied, Nicole and I closed the store, and changed into our civilian clothes. We then ganged up with Rusty, and caravanned one mile north up Virginia Street, to meet Marie at Outback.
When we arrived, we found that Marie had already reserved a table with the hostess. As Nicole and I sat down, Rusty followed with his signature tripod and camera at the head of the table.
Since we had made sure to save room for this dinner, there were no holds barred when it came to ordering. Aside from the complimentary Honey Wheat Bushman bread that Outback provided, Marie and I ordered a Grilled Shrimp appetizer. And once again, all was quiet with the Southgate staff as we munched away on our pre-dinner goodies...
For entrees, Rusty ordered a filet mignon and baked potato with a salad. Marie got a New York steak, also with a baked potato. I ordered surf-and-turf, with more grilled shrimp and a sirloin steak (cheese fries and potato soup for sides). Nicole was the only one who didn’t order steak at the steakhouse: instead, she got her favorite “Chicken on the Barbie,” also with cheese fries. All and all, we were very happy diners, and the food was good.
As the plates started clearing off, we began looking at the dessert menu. But out of the blue, the birthday cards came out! Marie pulled out mine and Nicole’s, and Nicole sneakily pulled out Rusty’s, complete with artsy envelope. We were all able to read the sentiments inside our cards, and everyone shared a moment filled with love and laughter.
After the card-reading break, we got back to picking dessert. (Unlike past company dinners, we all made a point to save room this time!) We decided to get the decadent Chocolate Thunder from Down Under, which is a warm brownie with hot fudge, vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and chocolate syrup. We even had the waitress drizzle on her secret stock of caramel. It. Was. Wonderful.
We all enjoyed eating dessert together, and courtesy of our smart phones, we got to look at some pictures of movie stars, past and present.
When the night wrapped up (and before it got completely dark), we were able to get the one last thing we needed: a picture in front of Outback, with the neon sign glowing behind us. It was a very pleasant ending to a very eventful night.
Now here’s Nicole to finish us off:
Dinner at Outback was great, and as promised, we went home stuffed. From the looks of it, both Maya and Rusty had wonderful birthday celebrations, and we all had a great time at the triple-birthday-dinner.
Again, Happy Birthday Rusty and Maya... Me next!
Nicole and Maya