i like life to be fun. (=understatement of the year century lifespan of the universe.)

i find that life is much more enjoyable when you make a point to laugh at yourself every day and live like any moment might be the best one you’ll ever experience.

kinda like a rock star…ya know, without the fame, and crowds, and global popularity.

i just have so much to be thankful for that i can’t help being enthusiastic, usually to the point of silliness. (and let’s be honest…it makes for some pretttty interesting photo opps.)

                             case in point.

i think enthusiasm is a key to a long life. (well, along with running & frozen yogurt, of course. )

and apparently the “my life rocks” mentality is an innate Hussey trait. we’re just born to be ridiculously excitable.

                as my dad would say, “i rest my freaking case.”

i usually find something to be tickled pink about every day, but if there’s one day that elevates my elation level far above and beyond any pretense at normal giddiness, it’s June 16.

i freaking love my birthday. there’s nothing like having that one amazing day of the year that is devoted fully to celebrating your very existence. call it selfish, call it juvenile, call it silly. i call it a fortunate gift from a mother who always made our birthdays the most wonderful days of our lives.

awww thank you, Mom. next year, i’d like to feel special AT the Oscars, if you can swing it…

i felt like this the night of my 30th birthday. not even the sheer fact of turning non-20s could damper my fabulous night — not to mention my first birthday in NYC. and thanks to my faaaabulous friends, it was one of the best birthdays ever.

                                    what’s a big celebration without your best friend in the world??

                                                                 friends you’ve had for years…

                                                                    & new city friends!

i chose a restaurant called Extra Virgin in the West Village that i’d heard great things about (especially in regards to their seafood, which is my faaaave), and it turned out to be a perfect choice for dinner. if you live in NYC and you haven’t been, do yourself a huge favor and please, go. asap. it was uh.may.zing.

photo by Nicolas Goldberg

although it seems more suitable for a small party or an intimate date setting, they accommodated the ten of us really well but tucking us into a table along the wall in the side dining room. (note: reservations only accepted for parties of 6 or more). the place was packed, which i’ve heard it usually is, yet the atmosphere wasn’t overwhelming.

and the food…the food was deeelish-ous. we started with wine & apps, including one of my new favorite white wine discoveries:

mmmmm, Sancerre. perfect with fish, which is what i had, of course. i chose their “Halibut Simply Grilled” entree, which included “fresh herbs, tomato carpaccio, arugula, & extra virgin (what else?!) olive oil.”

sooooo good, and a big portion too. i couldn’t finish it…and i’m glad for that, b/c my friends surprised me with the Flourless Chocolate Cake and a round of birthday singing. we all dug into this baby…

because it’s okay to splurge and share a lil chocolate with some fab friends on your bday.

i could not have been happier with my birthday dinner, from the atmosphere to the company to the cuisine. i will definitely be returning to this restaurant, hopefully to check out their enticing brunch menu sometime soon!

after dinner, we flitted on over to Bar Basque in the Eventi Hotel in Chelsea to keep the party going and do a lil dance party USA.   (because y’all know i love to boogie!)

photo by Katie Sokoler/Gothamist

photo by Katie Sokoler/Gothamist

this place was prettttty sweet…and really RED. perfect for a birthday dance par-tay!

such a fun ending to a terrific night, surrounded by great friends in a vibrant atmosphere with lots of laughter and dancing. and just when i thought it couldn’t possibly get any better, the DJ played The Outfield’s “Your Love” and Bel Biv DeVoe’s “Poison” at my friends’ surprise requests.

yes, those are our college songs. don’t hate. you know you love them, too.

thanks to everyone who made my 30th absolutely thrilling! i plan on turning 30 again next year, so get ready to try and top it.