31 Questions Birthday Video!

Hello lovies!  It’s your girl Lauren here…and guess what day it is today?  Yes, yes, it’s the last day of winter, but it’s also…my 31st birthday!  {What whaaaaat!}  And it’s my joy to have you over here for a small celebration.

31 Questions in 3 mins. 10 seconds on my 31st Birthday - March 19, 2014 by Lauren from thinkingcloset.com

Now, for those of you who may have missed it, a few weeks ago, I published a call for questions from you all…31 of them to be exact…so I could better connect with you, my dear readers, and attempt a feat that has never been attempted before (to the best of my knowledge).

That feat?  To answer 31 questions in 3 minutes and 10 seconds on my 31st birthday.  {Awkward pause.}

31 Questions in 3 mins. 10 seconds on my 31st Birthday - March 19, 2014 by Lauren from thinkingcloset.com

Photo by Rula Sibai

I know, I’m a wackadoodle.  But chances are, if you’re a regular here, you’re probably a bit of a wackadoodle, too.  (No wonder we get along so well!)

I’ll admit, initially wondered if I’d even get enough questions…and I started mentally preparing for the fact I might have to beg my family to send some my way.

But I should have never doubted you!  You delivered 31 amazing questions and then some!  In fact, they were all so good, I plan to email my responses to those I didn’t get to take a stab at in the video.  And I seriously have enough post ideas now to last me a lifetime.  Thanks to each and every one of you who played along and made such thoughtful contributions.

Yesterday, I set up the tripod in our sunniest corner, pulled our most colorful quilt down from the closet shelf, and I shot way more than 3 minutes and 10 seconds of footage.  The real art of this endeavor was in the video editing process.  The shorter the film, the longer it takes to edit.  


Now, a few quick disclaimers about what you’re about to see before clicking “play:”

  1. I didn’t realize until in the final stages of editing that my pearl earrings were mismatched.  Sigh.  Signs of age, perhaps?
  2. I talk pretty fast normally, let alone when I’m trying to race the clock.  Plus, I edited out any natural pauses that may have existed.  So, if cheery, fast-talkers annoy you, well, then I am your nightmare!
  3. Apparently, I bust out into song all.  the.  time.  All the world’s a stage, right?
  4. Oh, and try not to be too jealous of my awesome posture.  It has been 31 years in the making.  {Wink.}

So, let’s get to it, shall we?  And you can see whether or not I actually succeeded in my mission.  The timer starts when the questions start.  And I recommend clicking the gear icon to change your YouTube settings so the video plays in 720p HD.

Yeehaw!  I hope you enjoyed watching that video as much as I did making it.  Seriously, it brings me so much joy to connect with you all, my dear readers in this way.  It’s almost like we were gabbing over coffee!  (Really, really caffeinated coffee.)

Birthday Video!  31 Questions in 3 Minutes 10 Seconds on My 31st Birthday! via thinkingcloset.com

Your Turn!

And I meant what I said, and I said what I meant….

I’d be oh so elated if you each tackled a question or two from the 31 and responded in the comments below.  That way, the “getting to know you” process can continue.

And I want to especially challenge the blurkers a.k.a. blog lurkers.  {Props to my Silhouette friend, Karen W., for that fun term.}  Even if you’ve never left a comment here before, pleeeeeeease say hi and introduce yourself!

The 31 Questions

Here are the list of questions in the order I answered them.  Pick one…or more!  (Just say which number you’re responding to in your comment.)

  1. What did you want to be when you grew up?
  2. If you could tell your 15 1/2 year old self (because that’s exactly half your age) anything, what would it be?
  3. What has blogging taught you about yourself?
  4. Where do you find all your time to craft, create, and do wonders?
  5. Besides family and theatre, what do you miss most about New York?
  6. What is your all-time favorite musical?
  7. Do you have any advice for crafting, working moms?
  8. What is one thing you would tell parents to “do” or to “be” that would help develop creativity in their children?
  9. Is there anything that makes you nervous?
  10. Are you always so upbeat?
  11. And to what do you attribute your perkiness, my dear?
  12. Could you bottle it and send me some?
  13. If you had been told in college that you had to choose a new career path (no musical theater or teaching) what would you be doing?
  14. How do you think of new posts and ideas?
  15. What is the one thing you dislike most about blogging?
  16. How do you deal with times when you just want to have downtime from the blog (like when you are having an “I just want to hide away” day)?
  17. What is your favorite craft to do?
  18. What was your favorite musical song to sing in a show?
  19. Which song in a musical would you aspire to sing someday?
  20. When you think back on the last 31 years, what’s one of the most valuable things you’ve learned?
  21. Did your adoptive kitty (Mangey?) help you with your bedroom redo? Please include a quick shot of the kitty if you choose to reply to my question.
  22. How do you juggle family, work, and a successful blog?
  23. Who or what contributed to your passion for crafting and creating?
  24. What is your favorite thing about Florida?
  25. What do you miss most about Ohio?
  26. What’s one big thing you want to accomplish before you turn 32?
  27. Favorite song ever?
  28. Favorite food?
  29. Favorite dessert?
  30. What is one of your biggest irrational fears?
  31. What would your absolutely perfect day look like?

Okay, now I’m off to get my birfday on.  I’ll be back tomorrow, though!  Catch ya then, k?


signing off!



P.S.  I like to link up here.

A Walk Down Memory Lane

For more birthday goodness, here’s a look back at a few posts related to my 30th birthday last year!

Lovely comments so far...

  1. says

    Happy birthday!!!! Loved the video. You my dear are a natural and you should keep these videos coming! And for my question I’ll pick the dessert…I LOVE cannolis. Although your dessert has intrigued me.. I think I need to try one, after all it’s only fair :)

  2. says

    Happy Birthday! Totally hysterical video! I turn 45 in a few weeks but I think doing 45 questions might be a bit much…lol! I’ll answer #15 and completely agree with you! It takes so much time to promote all our fabulousness! Oh well. I guess that is all part of this blogging life. Have a fab day!

    • says

      Happy (almost) 45th birthday, Consie! I hope you celebrate it in style. 😉 And thanks for your camaraderie in lamenting over the time-suck that is blog post promoting. Can’t we just create?! Ha ha. But it’s a small price to pay for all the wonderful aspects of this blogging life, I suppose…like meeting fantastic creatives like yourself!

  3. says

    BEST VIDEO EVVVEERRR!!! Hands down! I thoroughly enjoyed watching this and it superduperly cheered up my day! I wish I had your energy too! I have no idea which question to pick….ummm….What is the one thing you dislike most about blogging? The time it takes to forward plan and the way I get so overwhelmed by it all (weirdly just before bed) which makes me spiral into a ‘I’m not cut out for this and am guna stop’ kinda panic, which thankfully dissolves in the morning. I really hate the days where I feel like I am treading water to keep it all going. Hopeful after more experience and when the blog is older than 3 months I will have sorted this out (fingers crossed as 95% of the time I love love love my blog) Thank you for such a great blog today Lauren, I hope your birthday is as fabulous as you are :) Much Love xx

    • says

      Ha ha, Rachel, your enthusiasm shouts through the computer screen, and I heart you for it! Also, I’m going to make a habit of pulling out some of my favorite Rachel-isms each time you leave me a comment. My favorite this time around? “Superduperly.” Ha! I love it! Must start using it immediately.

      Yeah, the forward planning can be a mood-killer for sure; and those panicky late at night stress sessions are no stranger to me. But you’re so right: things look better in the morning. And I’m going to email you the spreadsheet I made in case it’s a help to you. I plan things out even a month or two in advance (whenever I get an idea for a post I write it down). Now, the plan changes a million times over, but it’s a relief to just have something written down, ya know? Just try to give yourself grace where you can; and in the words of my theatre professor, “treat yourself like a gifted child.” I think we can be our own worst enemies sometime. And girl, you are doing a LOT of things really right. So, I hope you believe that indeed you ARE cut out for this…because you are. It’s a fact.

      Thanks for the encouraging birthday comment, friend. Sending love from across the pond!

      P.S. Never fear, I fixed the typo! Auto-correct gets me every time, too! (Raising fist to sky.)

  4. says

    Happy Birthday Dear Lauren!! Another amazing video…I LOVE it!! The world is a better place because of upbeat, positive people like YOU!!

    Lovin these two questions – #10 – Are you always so upbeat? #11 – And to what do you attribute your perkiness, my dear?
    I have had the honor to meet Lauren in the flesh and she is contagiously upbeat…the kind of person you are drawn to…One of the reasons I absolutely adore her!
    People ask me these questions too…I think attitude is EVERYTHING…I always tell myself; you get to choose your attitude everyday so why not choose a great one? Life is incredibly short so why waste it focusing on the negative things that might come your way? Instead I try to look at the world through the eyes of a child and take in the wonder of a fluttering butterfly, the full moon or the sound of birds singing. Each day is a gift…so I try and open my eyes and take it ALL in!

    I hope you have an amazing day, dear Lauren…I can already tell you that your 31st year is going to be your BEST year yet! (You’re getting better all the time!)

    I can’t wait to see you again…and add to those incredible memories you are collecting!

    • says

      Sharon! Your comment and text made my DAY on the 19th and again tonight re-reading it! The adoration runs both ways, Sharon dear. I think we might be cut from the same cloth…and that’s why chatting with you at dinner that night before FL Blog Con felt like catching up with an old friend. It was just so natural and easy. And your philosophy on choosing to focus on the positive and see the world with child-like eyes, well, it resonates deeply. And I think if only everyone shared your perspective, well, then the world would be a very different place!

      You’re so right; every day is a gift. And we mustn’t take that for granted.

      Also, thanks for your exciting predictions for year 31. The best yet? Bring it on! Already, it is off to an amazing start; I’ve just felt bolstered up by the love and support by my friends, especially you. Looking forward to collecting more memories together this spring and summer!

      A huge bundle of love comin’ your way…. xoxo

  5. says

    Happy, happy birthday!!! And oh, my, gosh, that video is so FUN! You did an amazing job. I am so impressed that not only did you answer all 31 questions in the time limit, but you gave a thoughtful response to each one!! And great editing, btw. Also, I’m sitting at the breakfast table and watched the video with Addy in the high chair next to me…when it was over, she said “bye bye” and waved at the screen, then started saying “yaaaay” and clapping. You have a little fan!

    • says

      Muchas gracias, Meredith. Yes, the challenge was definitely in editing. I can’t tell you how much footage I shot that lies on the cutting room floor; but such are the growing pains of a wordy girl learning the art of conciseness. 😉 It was definitely a worthwhile exercise! Thanks for the fun musical theatre question, too. I was actually delighted at how much of my theatre side came through in the Q & A thanks to you and my Dad. Oh, and Addy’s cheers and claps mean the world to me! Truly. Give her a hug for me!

    • says

      Aw, thanks, Denice and Chaddy! Yeah, I decided to go for a bold hair change this past December…a bit of a belated “30 by 30” bucket list item. (Better late than never, right?) And thanks for the birthday love, sweet Parkers. Hurtling the love back atcha!

  6. says

    Happy jolly wolly birthday, dear friend!! This video made my day!! If only for three minutes, I am so grateful to have spent some time with you on this oh-so-special day!!! Now… my answer to #22 (the juggling act)… I saw a quote recently that I LOVED… “You can do ANYTHING but not EVERYTHING!” and it is totally okay to say no. That has helped me find more balance and happiness!!! :)

    P.S. Do you feel like a total goofball when you make these videos?!? Ha ha!! I know I have made some silly videos in my day and giggle at myself!! Ha ha!! Oh, to be a fly on your wall!!! :) Happy jolly wolly friend!! :)

    • says

      I’ve never heard the phrase “Happy jolly wolly birthday” before, but I love it to pieces (which is how I feel about everything you utter), and it makes me smile. So, thank you, Candace!

      And that quote: I definitely need to repeat it to myself day after day. It actually reminds me of something my theatre professor would tell us when doing scene-work in acting class: “Just try to do SOMETHING. Not everything.” Same concept. Almost the same exact words. And it definitely was sage wisdom then and still holds true. Because if you try to do everything, you will fail miserably. But doing something, and doing that something well, it’s so do-able. I just need to put my blinders on and focus on that one thing! And not get distracted by all the other somethings I want to do, too! Lol. Anyway, thanks for reminding me of that. And I’m glad to hear you’re finding more balance and happiness in your life, friend.

      And yes, I totally feel like a goofball when filming. In fact, I insist that Mark not be around to hear me singing and talking like a madwoman because that would make me feel even more self-conscious than I already do. Which makes me think that you and Bill must have the hardest time keeping a straight face when you bust out into your goofball moments when shooting. It’s so hard with a buddy around! Lol.

      Happy jolly wolly weekend, Candace.

  7. says

    Loved the video! So much excitement. #29: Favourite dessert: this is a tough one because I love love love dessert, but I think I might have to go cheesecake because of its versatility. Oh, and happy birthday! Hope you have a great day :)

    • says

      Thanks for the birthday wishes, Laura. And yeah, I’m slightly hyperactive. Lol. And I’m with ya, girl: I heart dessert. To an unhealthy degree. It’s so hard to pick one favorite, isn’t it? I do applaud your cheesecake selection, though. I’ll never forget the chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake dessert I consumed during my first visit to The Cheesecake Factory back in college. Such sweet memories!

  8. says

    Happy Birthday girlfriend! Love the video, your spunk & talent! Best wishes for the best birthday yet! Hope to see you at a girls get together in the not too distant future..aka summer boat day!

  9. says

    Happy Birthday Lauren!!! I LOVE that your favorite dessert is a Pizzookie!!! They are also my FAVE, and I always tell people they’re my fave and nobody knows what they are. How is that possible?? so. good. One of my biggest irrational fears: writing personal statements for college/grad school applications!!! AHHHH!!!! And I would have to agree with you–taking all that time to promote various posts on social media=ugh! least favorite part as well.

    • says

      Yay for our kindred love of Pizzookies! Mark and I were obsessed with BJ’s Brewhouse when we lived in Columbus, OH, but had no idea they were a chain until we were exploring Orlando (before we moved here) and spotted one. Then and there, we felt like it was a sign we needed to move here. Lol. The BJs force is strong with us. 😉

      Ha ha, and my stomach did a somersault to even hear the mention of personal statements…so I hear ya, girlie. So glad those are behind us (at least for now!).

      Thanks for joining in on the birthday fun, Gabby! A huge hug is comin’ your way!

  10. Kirsten says

    Ok, first. I love you. :) You know that already, but I wanted to remind you on your oh-so-fanTABULOUS 31st birthday!! Seriously, we need to hang out. Like, soon. Because it would be awesome, and we’d laugh til our faces hurt, and then we’d laugh some more. (And eat one of those yummy soft cookie and ice cream thingies you mentioned – those sound AMAZE-BALLS!!)

    Second, the question. Hmmm…I’ll take #1 – first, I wanted to be a veterinarian, then an oceanographer. When that fell through, and I grew up, I wanted to be a mom. Which I am. And it rocks. (Mission accomplished!) Now, I’m still growing up and I want to be the owner/operator of a family craft studio and a church youth director. WOOT WOOT!

    Love you! Happy birthday! Go Lauren! It’s Your Birthday! Gonna party like it’s your birthday!

    • says

      Yes pleeeeease! Let’s hang out! I’d even settle for a virtual hangout until we could make the one IRL happen…because yes, it would be oh so amazing and full of laughter and delicious, too! Pizooki partay!

      Also, wow! I love that you have a sciency side to you with the veterinarian / oceanographer ambitions! (Not having a sciency bone in my body, that intrigues me to no end.) Yes, you are definitely rocking at being a Mom. Kirsten for the win! Also, your hopes of owning a family craft studio and being a church youth director? Um…does it get much cooler than that? I think not. Go after those dreams with abandon, girl! You’ve got this!

      I love you, Kirsten. Thanks for being ever-affirming you! And for giving me a ginormous smile when I first read your comment on the 19th and again tonight. xoxo

  11. says

    First off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Secondly, amazing post! This was awesome. I loved it! Totally broke through the monotony of pages and pages of blog text from my reading list today. Love a good video! So fun to ‘meet you’ as well.

    So…here’s my answer to question #3
    What has blogging taught you about yourself?

    It has taught me, very surprisingly, that after years and years in the Corporate world, my creativity still exists somewhere inside of me. I had thought it was lost forever. It’s good to know I still have it (at least some days)! I feel like it’s coming back bit by bit every day.

    Hope you have a fabulous day!

    • says

      Ha ha. Yes! I love busting through the monotony. If only I had the energy and time to do a video like this every week! But once a year is a reasonable goal, right? 😉

      And thanks for your response to #3. And I totally agree that it takes time to re-access that creativity lying within. I believe we’re all born with creativity and a variety of factors in our lives (namely school and work and fear) can kill that creativity. But like you, I’ve been re-discovering mine these past few years…and it has been invigorating. Can’t wait to see what you unleash as your creativity grows in the days/weeks/months/years ahead! (Watch out, world.)

  12. says

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY LAUREN!! I enjoyed this oh-so-much! The next time we’re together, I think we should sing musical songs together. My two faves (they’re tied, I can’t choose one over the other) are The Music Man & My Fair Lady. Oh, and Sound of Music is a close 2nd/3rd.
    Okay, now to answer a few of these questions for myself. #1: I wanted to work with horses. First, I thought I’d be a veterinarian, then I wanted to own & run a boarding stable. I had even started looking at colleges specializing in equestrian programs until a weird, fateful day steered me to decide on Creative Writing and made me realize that I’d really wanted to be writer (not rider) all along :) #13: If I couldn’t be a writer, I’d be an archeologist. I have a minor in History and I’m still kicking myself for not taking the opportunity to work on a dig site during one of my summers in college.
    Cheers to you! Have a very special day, my dear!

    • says

      Musical Theatre Song-Fest 2014 with Emily and Lauren? I’m down like a clown, Charlie Brown! (“The Music Man,” “My Fair Lady,” and “The Sound of Music” are faves of mine, as well. So, we’ll have no trouble at all finding songs to sing that we BOTH love!)

      Now, my responses to YOUR responses:

      1) What little girl doesn’t want to ride horses? Although I think you took it to another level by looking into college programs! You go, girl. Ha ha, “writer” not “rider.” I see what you did there. 😉
      13) That is so fascinating! Maybe you can still find a way to work on a dig site someday; and then write an incredible book recounting your stories! #mergingtheloves

      Thanks for the birthday love! I truly am overwhelmed by it all (in the best sense).

  13. Helene Trottier says

    Hi Lauren, You are just so cute! But an introvert?? I would never have thought that. How about making a singing video? I bet grandma and grandpa would like that. HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!

    • says

      Hi Helene! Thanks for stopping by and for the warm wishes! I know, I think a lot of people think of introverts as shy, but I’m an outgoing introvert – – just charged by my alone time and not by people time. And thanks for the encouragement to do more singing videos. I definitely have a few more ideas up my sleeve on that front…. Take care!

  14. Addie says

    Hi friend, I miss you!! That was wonderful!! Come back and visit Ohio SOON!
    As for a question 19.Which song in a musical would you aspire to sing someday – Aida – Elaborate Lives
    Happy Happy Birthday :)

    • says

      Gosh, I miss you guys, too, Addie! Especially when I see these heart-melting photos of your sweet offspring on Facebook. We hope we can make another trip up north soon…and if we do, we are DEFINITELY planning a Natalie meet-up and tour of the new digs. Also, girl, I know you could bring the house down with your interpretation of “Elaborate Lives.” In fact, let’s plan a little cabaret night when we’re together next and make it happen!

  15. says

    You are crazy! I love your blog and so glad I found you. I’ll take your challenge….If I could tell my 15.5 year old self anything, it would be, you don’t really need to have other boyfriends to know your current boyfriend is “the one”. Now I know that sounds crazy, but I’ve been with my husband since I was 12 and decided at 18 that I need other boyfriends…but I had the perfect one already. Awww…

    • says

      Crazy indeed! So glad that doesn’t scare you off, either…we’ve all got a little crazy in us, don’t we? And I definitely did “Awwwww” at your advice to your 15.5 year old self, Brooke. I hope you shared that with your hubby! Sweetness overload!

    • says

      Yeah! Really excited to hear a shout-out to RENT. That was Mark’s “gateway drug” into the wonderful world of musical theatre. And now, he’s hooked. “Without You” is one of our favorite songs! And thanks for the sweet b-day wishes, friend. It was a truly special day!

  16. Mom L says

    Well done Lauren!! I felt like I was actually with you today ~ Happy Birthday dear girl and thank you for the bright spot you put in all of our days! Love you to pieces!

    • says

      Love you, too, Mom! Thanks for making my birthday so special…and not just with this comment, but with your surprise PRESENCE at dinner, your sweet card, and the gorgeous flowers which make me smile every time I pull into the driveway and see them on our doorstep. 😉

  17. says

    And this is why you are the best ever! Awesome video, my friend! And now, if I may break into a little song of my own (be thankful that I’m typing and you do not actually have to listen to me sing ;):

    Happy Birthday to YOU!
    Happy Birthday to YOU!
    Happy Birthday, dearest Lauren!!!!
    Happy Birthday, to YYYYYOOOOUUUUU!!!! [And many moooooorrrreeee….] 😀

    I hope you’re having the best birthday ever! And to grant your wish and answer one of your questions, “Is there anything that makes you nervous?” Yes. Almost everything makes me nervous. So usually I let it take over my brain and live in a state of fear and nervousness for a couple weeks until I can’t do it anymore, and then I just do it so I can stop feeling sick over it and it’s usually way easier than I thought and I feel great once I’ve conquered it. <—Run on sentence (So you'd think after going through this process a bunch of times I would just learn to do it right away, but nope! Still put it off! 😉
    And now that my comment is almost as long as your blog post, I will leave you alone! 😀 Enjoy your day, my friend!

    ~Abby =)

    • says

      Ha ha. Your song was glorious, Abby! And pitch perfect, too! Thank you, m’dear. I’m feeling super special right now!

      And I loved your response. I definitely have been battling anxiety for most of my life, so I resonated SO much with the sentiments in that run-on. Here’s to not letting our nerves rule our lives…and to conquering fears faster going forward! Woop woop!

  18. says

    Happy Birthday!!

    #2 – Don’t get that credit card when you 18!! It’ll haunt you for the next 15 years…but don’t worry it will get paid off.
    #24 – My corporate office is there, so every few months I get to fly back and feel like an important business person.
    #28 – Favorite food – Italian or Mexican…I could eat Pasta and Tacos/Enchiladas for every meal.
    #29 – Favorite Dessert – Cookies or Ice Cream (mainly chocolate chip).

    Hope your 31st is great!! Mine hasn’t been bad so far. :-)

    • says

      Thanks for paving the way for me with year 31! And for tackling so many questions! It’s great to get to know you a bit better, Jamie. Also, like you, I could easily live off of pasta and Mexican food…in fact, why don’t I? Lol. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  19. says

    YAAAY! I LOVED every second! You rocked that video and made it so super-fun! Also, your irrational fear about a roach crawling into your ear? When I was five, a SPIDER got stuck in my ear for a WHOLE DAY. I kept complaining to my mom that my ear felt tickly, and finally she poured rubbing alcohol into my ear, and a spider crawled out!!! OMG. I can’t even believe it and it happened to me. :) HAPPY BIRTHDAAAAAY!!!

    • says

      Thanks, friend! Seriously, you were a big part of the inspiration behind this vid…and I’m anxiously awaiting round 2 of your and Andy’s Q & A sesh. More giggling! More plate wall stories! Puh-leeeeeease!?

      Oh, and your spider story transforms my irrational fear into a rational one. Running to the garage RIGHT NOW to dig up some ear muffs for me to sleep with tonight.

  20. Gina says

    Oh, Lauren! I LOVED this video! Thank you for sharing the happy birthday love. I’ve always wanted to sing “Think of Me” in a musical. :)

    • says

      You would do a heart-rending rendition of “Think of Me,” Gina…I can practically hear your melodious voice now. P.S. Guess what I am wearing around my neck right now? Yup. The “Balance” necklace you gave me. It’s my favorite!

    • says

      Thanks, Christy! I am quite confident that you are a bucket of fun, yourself! Also, your Mom sounds like an amazing woman; I hope to inspire my future children someday just like she did! Thanks for the happy birthday wishes! HUGS.

  21. Tanya says

    Happy Birthday Lauren!! What a fun video, it made me laugh! Your too stinkin’ cute!! I love your joy and how you contribute it to God. I too like to keep a list going of ideas. I have a sketch book that I scribble down sketches (and I can’t even draw good stick people) and keep things out of magazines in it. I’ll have to show you a pic sometime. Hope you have a GREAT day!! ♥♥♥

    • says

      Thanks sweet, Tanya. To God be all the glory! For sure! And I’m sure that sketch book of yours is just chock full of creative ideas. Your blog is evidence of that! It sounds kind of like a Smash Book. Have you heard of those? Thanks again for the birthday love, friend! It means so much to me.

  22. says

    hi! I’ve recently started following you and this definitely gave me a good laugh tonight, loved your honesty and all your answers to these questions! I was guilty of being a blurker when I just started out a couple months ago, but have been trying to network and communicate more :)

    I’m gonna go ahead and tackle question #1.

    I wanted to be a juice maker. huh? ya, weird I know. Is that even a profession? Who knows, but I apparently wanted to be one!

    oh and happy birthday!

    • says

      Bre! So delighted to know you enjoyed the vid…and that it gave you a laugh, too! Score!

      Also, I know from experience that it can be so hard to transition from blurking to engaging…but after getting your email the other day, I think you’re doing a fantastic job of growing and stretching yourself in that area! It will definitely help you and your blog.

      Also, the fact that you wanted to be a juice-maker earns you MAJOR cool points in my book. Especially if it’s an invented profession. You were clearly an out-of-the-box kind of thinker as a kid! I would have definitely wanted to be your friend. 😉

  23. says

    You nailed it!! Beautifully done, birthday girl!! Love your contagious energy…I don’t sing in public but I suddenly feel a song coming on!! :) Going to answer #30 in that I have a very unhealthy fear of mice. Snakes? Totally fine. Get me near a fuzzy mouse and be ready for a crazy-girl meltdown…lol!! Wishing you the best of birthdays and thank you for sharing your heart on your special day!!

    • says

      Yay! If I can inspire a spontaneous song in you, well, then I’m a happy camper. Oh, and I caught such a vision when you mentioned your potential for a “crazy-girl meltdown.” I’ve definitely had a few of those in my lifetime. Hope those mice steer clear of you, though! No meltdowns allowed. For your sake or theirs. 😉 Thanks for the mega birthday love, Stef!

  24. says

    Great video Lauren! And happy happy birthday. My favorite food is crab cakes and french fries from Houston’s restaurant and my favorite dessert is tiramisu. And now I’m hungry!

  25. Teri S says

    Phenomenal as usual, Lauren. Hope you had a great day! #2 Take your time, you’ll eventually get married and have a family…. There is more to life than just that! I was afraid I’d never have a boyfriend, never get married and never have children. Guess what? I had more boyfriends than I ever hoped I would. Been married for 34 years, three girls later (and one grandson) here I am.

    • says

      It really was an incredible day. Thanks so much, Teri! And I loved hearing your response to #2. Especially since I have some close girlfriends who are feeling anxious to get to that next step of marriage and a family. And I don’t blame them. It can be so hard to really live in the present and not just hope for the next step…that’s something I’ve been working on myself!

      Also, congrats on 34 years of marriage! That’s a big deal!

    • says

      Aw, thanks so much, Emily! It gives me so much joy to know it made you laugh. Well worth the hours and hours of editing it took to get it down to 3:10 minutes! Lol.

      Also, great pick with your favorite musical! Les Mis is in my Top Ten for sure. Did you enjoy the recent film version? I cried so many tears watching it!

  26. says

    What has blogging taught me about myself? That I really enjoy crafting! Seriously…I never knew that!

    What is my favorite craft to do? All the vinyl things. In fact, I *just* got done cutting some nail decals to send for the #SpringPolishSwap and of course I cut some for myself as well.

    Also, There’s no way I’m believing that you’re an introvert. You’re way too…umm…extroverted! Lol. Either way, you’re super adorable and I’m glad we’ve become buds! I’ve learned so much through you and your blog. Hope you have an amazing birthday!!!

    • says

      I love that you’ve discovered a new passion through blogging, Heather! Because you’re good at crafting, too!

      And vinyl’s pretty incredible, isn’t it? It was really hard to choose just one favorite, so I decided it would have to be my favorite “right now.” Or I would have gone crazy trying to narrow it down!

      Ha ha, I think the word “introvert” throws people off because I’m so outgoing. But I’m one of those rare “outgoing introverts.” The “introvert” part just means I’m charged by alone time. So, I can be the life of the party and enjoy it while I’m there, but once I get home, I just want to curl up in my bed with my laptop for 5 days straight to recover. Lol.

      Thanks for the sweet words, Heather! I’m so glad we’ve met through the interwebs, too. You’re a gem and a half!

  27. says

    Lauren, you are the CUTEST thing ever – and kind of a freak. HA!! In an awesome way. :) SUCH a fun video. And, we’re almost birthday twins, because mine starts in 6 minutes CST. Yes, I’m up way too late for my birthday eve. I should be sleeping or eating chocolate, but no, I’m writing a post. LOL. I agree with you on the #15. Totally dislike how long it takes to do all of the social media stuff. Can I hire a VA yet??? :)

    Happy birthday, my friend! I hope it was lovely!!

    • says

      Lol. Not “kind of.” I’m TOTALLY a freak! Ha ha. Though I’m glad I don’t scare you off with my freak-ness. And I love being your birthday twin, Laura. Hope yours was swell! (And I was totally up late the night before my birthday finishing this post! Sigh. A blogger’s work is never done, is it?) And I chuckled at your VA comment because although it got cut for time, one of my longer responses to #15 was, “Oh wait. That’s what a virtual assistant does? Send me your resumes, people!” Looking forward to that day when I can REALLY say that! 😉

  28. Justine Holmes says

    Love this sooo much. Happy Birthday! Answer to #1- a soccer player (according to our 8th grade year book) which was right around when we became besties. And # 30- biggest irrational fear- that I will lose all my contacts and someone will hide my glasses and I’ll never be able to see ( I legit have nightmares about this). xoxo

    • says

      Thanks, sweet friend! And you were quite the soccer star in 8th grade if I do recall…so no wonder you had your sights set on a career in it! And oh my, your contacts nightmare sounds absolutely terrifying. Makes me want to send you back-up back-up glasses for your birthday this year! xoxo

  29. says

    Happy Birthday! I LOVE this video and as you know I’m also the president of your fan club so I’m loving me some Lauren too! My new favorite thing about living in Florida is that you’re here :) Lots of love and the happiest of days to you.

  30. says

    Happy Birthday… well, I’m a day late to the party. Isn’t that just like me. Anyway, I loved your video, you seriously crack me up. I’ll answer #1. As a little girl, and architect or a psychiatrist. From high-school until a year or so ago: a nobel-prize winning scientist… yeah, I was never afraid to dream big. Now (being out of the job market for now, I feel like I am not grown up yet), I just don’t know. In fact, I am not ready to dream about where life will take me once I don’t have kiddos at home all the time. I am happy to live in the moment, and a write a blog.

  31. says

    Happy Birthday! Love the video!! Since we both love and work in the theater, I’ll answer the musical questions.
    Favorite Musical: can’t pick just one
    Fav song I’ve done: Someone to Watch Over Me
    Song I’ve Always wanted to do: Dance 10,Looks 3 (really I’ve always just wanted the figure for it)

    I hope 31 is a great year for you!

    • says

      Ohhhh! “Someone to Watch Over Me” is such a stellar number. I would LOVE to hear your rendition of it someday. (At a Silhouette conference perhaps? Nudge nudge.) Also, “A Chorus Line” is one of my faves. Hope you get a chance to do “Dance 10, Looks 3″…even if just at a karaoke night with your friends! Thanks for playing along and for the birthday wishes, Suz!

  32. says

    Well I’m a day late to the party, but that was fantastic! Happy Happy Birthday and hope your day was great! Since I’m a fellow broadway-lover, I’ll answer my favorite show, except I have too many favorites! I’ll give a two way tie between Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Bye Bye Birdie. Sound of Music gets an honorable mention, but more for the movie than the stage version. PS, seeing that I will be joining you in the 31 club in a couple months, I’m all for supporting that “31 is the new 21”!

    • says

      Michelle! Thanks so much for the birthday wishes; it really was a marvelous day indeed. Also, I feel connected to you all the more knowing you have such fantastic taste in Broadway musicals. How can you go wrong with the Sound of Music and Bye Bye Birdie! (I don’t know Dirty Rotten Scoundrels too well, I’m ashamed to say…though I love the actors in the original cast!) Also, really excited to have you join the 31 Club soon! So far, the water’s fine. Happy early b-day to YOU, my dear.

  33. Polly Pedersen says

    HI Lauren. Very cute video and Happy 31st bday! Im a friend of your mom, through Mom’s in Prayer. Im a New Yorker living upstate (West Sand Lake NY) and I totally agree with your sun comment. NO SUN IN NYS FROM NOVEMBER TO APRIL!!! ugh.. So you’ve lived in Ohio?, my middle daughter (28) will be moving to Cincinnati in May. And my oldest daughter loves musicals too and has a God given beautiful voice as well. Thanks for pointing out your most favorite musical- I would have to agree on West Side Story..my dad blasted that all through the house when I was a kid. Hope you have a wonderful day in the Lord!! AND BY THE WAY: I LOVE YOUR MOM!! Sorry Im not going to make the 24hr state getaway next month and the biggest disappointment is not seeing her. Our kids are so blessed for having moms that pray for them. YOu are a great crown for Him and them. Blessings, Polly

    • Marmie says

      Polly, this is Lauren’s mom. LOL Thank you so much for watching Lauren’s video and commenting! It means so much to both of us! I learned more about you through this, too! I am going to MISS YOU so much at the Get-Away! You are one of the best parts for me as well! At least we’re now friends forever! SHALOM!
      Thanks, too, for praying for being a praying mom and praying for your children and that adorable grand-daughter of yours. Until we meet again!!

    • says

      Polly, any friend of my Mom’s is a friend of mine…especially a Mom’s in Prayer mom. (Especially one who loves West Side Story, too!) Thanks for being such an incredible prayer warrior!

      Yes, we lived in Columbus, Ohio for three years…and we road tripped to Cincinnati once a year to shop at their IKEA! That’s neat that your daughter will be moving there. We found Ohio folk to be good people, and I trust she’ll find the same to be true.

      Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by the blog. Hugs and blessings back atcha, Polly!

      • Marmie says

        Polly, I think you and your daughters and I (or is it me) and my girls would have such fun together. One day….

  34. says

    Happy Birthday and loved the video. The question that fired my imagination was “And to what do you attribute your perkiness, my dear?” You answered your family are upbeat. This is interesting because I am also very upbeat but my family are not. I think I am upbeat because I made a conscious choice along time ago to only associate with positive people. I don’t mean my dear friends don’t have problems from time to time, but they are a positive bunch. They are loving and nurturing to me. Their marriages are still going strong and their is love which is the most important thing in the world. (I believe) I have bought my son up to celebrate life and his creativity and these are my two favorite pics. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

    • says

      Love those pics of your son, Sharon! Especially the trampoline one. Yes, I dare say you have done a fantastic job in raising him…especially when I hear stories of how likes to join you in your crafty / creative endeavors. Also, I think it’s quite empowering to learn that even though your family may not have been upbeat, you chose a different path. And you are living a vibrant, creative, love-filled life as a result. You’re an incredible example to us all. Thanks for the birthday wishes and for sharing a bit of your story here. HUGS to you in Aussie-land, friend!

  35. says

    This was SO fun to rewatch! Happy Day Aftah Ya Bday Sis! 😀 There are some classic Lauren moments here: the hat reveal, ALL the beauteous singing, WSS snaps, WHO causes your joy, your motivational speaker moment, about no guilt for downtime, ain’t nobody got time for that!, mangey photobomb, the literal bottle of perkiness, I could go on and on. Basically I love the WHOLE THING! I also heart that your earrings are mismatched…it’s better that way imo! And that picture up top with the mason jars on the fence…did you take that? It’s SCHWEET. Love that you felt so loved on your 31st, girl. Because you ARE SO LOVED! Blessed are you, dear one. Oh and what musical song would I love to sing someday? Yikes…that’s super hard to limit it to one. I think it would have to be the Trolley Car song!

    • says

      Thanks so much for the love and blessings in this comment (or should I say “peace and blessings”…wink wink). It made me smile to hear all of your favorite “classic Lauren” moments. Oh, and I kid you not, Mark and I sing the “Ain’t Nobody Got Time For That!” remix version you introduced us to when cross-country skiing this winter on a regular basis. It’s one of our favorite tunes to rock out to! Also, thanks for celebrating my hot-mess-ness with the earring debacle. I didn’t even realize it until the final stages of editing when I finally saw the video full screen. I was like, “Oh well, I’m not going to re-shoot and edit it now! It’s goin’ in!” And isn’t that mason jar photo super cool! I WISH I had snapped it. I actually got it from an amazing site that shares free photos. You would like it for your image/gif round-ups. http://unsplash.com/ I’ll go back in and add credit for the photographer since I forgot to do that!

      Oh, and you would totally knock it out of the park with your rendition of the Trolley Car song. One of my favorite parts of the video from your surprise birthday party last year was watching you sing that song. So. Much. Joy.

  36. says

    You are such a fun person to watch, loved the video, and getting to know you more. #1 I actually wanted to be a lawyer and a teacher, which got combined in high school when I decided I wanted to teach political science. Didn’t do either and became a Stay- at- Home- Mom. #15 How hard it is to get a good picture to represent your work. Just let me create, not spend 3 hours posing and editing only to find out I need to do it again.

    • says

      So happy you enjoyed it, Brenna! And thanks for playing along, too. It’s so interesting to learn more about each other, isn’t it? Like your passion for political science! I had no idea. Though being a stay-at-home-mom is definitely one of the most respectable professions in my book! And I’ll be curious to see if your poli-sci proclivities intersect with mommyhood in any way (post idea, perhaps?). And oh yes, I hear ya on the photo front. I work at a snail’s pace when it comes to editing photos. Here’s to hoping we both can get faster at that step in the blogging process!

  37. says

    Happy birthday!

    I loved the video! I’ll admit, I’d classify myself as a “blurker” but I’m hoping to change that and get to know fellow bloggers.

    #17: sewing baby bibs. I love deciding what fabric to use and mixing and matching!

    Nice to meet ya!


    • says

      Thanks, Eldie! And I was a blurker, too. But once you start commenting and engaging with other bloggers, you’ll find it’s hard to stop! And I’m so glad you took the time to comment here and say hi. Oooo, I bet sewing baby bibs would be heaps of fun. I’ve only ventured into burp cloths…but I think bibs might have to be my next project. Do you have any tutorials on your blog or other blogs that you recommend I check out?

  38. says

    Happy Birthday Lauren! I missed your big day, but your birthday video was fantastic! And I’m feeling so much better now that you’ve shared a bit of that bottled perki-ness with us. Blessings to you this first weekend of Spring!

    • says

      Ha ha. Glad you enjoyed it, Linda! I had a lot of fun with the video – – with your questions in particular – – so thanks so much for playing along. And I hope that bottle of perkiness comes in handy on days when you need it (though you always amazed me with your spirit and energy…so you might have a perkiness bottle business in the making yourself!). Blessings to you this spring, as well!

  39. says

    So since my email has been wonky and my attempts at sending you the most epic birthday email ever (kidding, it wasn’t that great) have failed! So… happy belated birthday! I am SO impressed with your video and your mad editing skilz, girl! I loved seeing your pretty face and hearing you break out into song, which I also do, though not NEARLY as well as you! I hope you had the happiest birthday ever and I just know that this year will be another amazing one for you!

    • says

      Oh no! I’m sure it was an epic email because that’s how I feel about ALL Thalita emails…even if they’re only a sentence long because…well…you have a way with words, my dear! We’ve already established that long ago. 😉 So, thanks for the attempts and for this amazing comment!

      Ha ha, yes, there was some mad editing going on…I really did feel like a madwoman by the end. And thank goodness I didn’t lose everything when iMovie crashed in the final phases; I was about to have a complete and utter meltdown the night before my birthday. Thankfully, it all worked out!

      And it makes me smile to think of us breaking out into song together when we get to hang out IN REAL LIFE. (Has Alex found a way to bring the band down Orlando way yet? Nudge, nudge.)

      Thanks for the well wishes, dear friend. I’m excited for my 31st year…as well as for your 30th! Hope you’re feeling better and that we can squeeze in that Google Hangout soon. I miss your face.

  40. says

    Ok. Picked my question. “What did you want to be when you grew up?” I wanted to go to college. Not for anything in particular, but when I was a kid my dad made such a big deal about how important doing well in school was. I had no idea what I wanted to do in college, I just new that I wanted to be one of those people who went. And now look at me, working on my PhD! Now the question I always get is what I’m going to do when I’m done, and that’s no simple answer!

    • says

      Ha ha. Yes, you totally went after your dream…and then some! Your Dad must be very proud of you. And I know that whenever the “end” of your PhD is, it won’t really be the end of your education. You are one of those life-long learners who will never stop growing or learning or discovering. And I think that’s fantastic.

  41. says

    You just brought a big dose of Florida sunshine to Montreal with this video – can’t stop smiling!
    Visiting from Under the table –
    Happy Birthday!

    • says

      Thanks for stopping by and checking it out, Summer! Oh, and I’m with you on the chips and salsa / queso. I’ve definitely had that for dinner MANY a time! (Without regrets.) Tee hee. Thanks for the birthday wishes, too!

  42. Marmie says

    Just watched this again and was delighted!! On your birthday I watched it several times, too. I can’t believe I didn’t wish you a happy birthday here and comment the day it came out. I think I thought I had (and maybe I did and just couldn’t find it among the numerous comments) but think I may have only commented on another comment. too much information.

    Well done! Very creative! and it was fun to learn a few things about you that I didn’t know already…like your favorite dessert! May the Lord bless you richly this year and always! Thanks for the effort you put into this and I’m glad you didn’t re-do it because you had two different earrings on. That just endears you to us and gives us all permission (I constantly need to be reminded of) to embrace our imperfections! xxoo

  43. says

    That was awesome.

    I’ve never heard anyone else say they’re afraid of something crawling in their ear at night, but I get freaked out about it all the time, too (except, I think spider instead of roach).

    • says

      Ha ha, glad I’m not the only one with the irrational fear of an insect crawling in my ear. I have such a vivid imagination and after hearing one too many stories about the same thing happening to some of my husbands’ patients, well, I keep imagining it happening to me! Ahhhh!

      Thanks for watching, Rebekah!

  44. says

    I know I wished you a Happy Birthday girl but I just got around to watching your video. How lame am I? You are SUCH a natural talent, girl!! LOVE this video! You should have your own crafting talk show. I’d tune in every single day!


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