dirty thirty girls weekend, charlotte in january

My best girlfriends planned a “surprise” weekend to celebrate my 30th birthday with me here in Charlotte. I say “surprise” because they had been planning it for a months but told me about it right before Christmas so I could be involved a little (like they knew I’d want to haha). My best friend in Charlotte, Ali, reached out to my two best girls in Georgia, Bailey and Beth, and asked if they would fly in for the weekend, then all three of them rented a beautiful Airbnb* for us that was close to uptown for a fun girls weekend. They are all the sweetest for taking time out of their busy lives to spoil me. 

Eric had been out of town for work all week and Ollie was sick, so I waited for him to get home before kissing him goodbye again and heading over to our girls house. When I walked in, they had filled it with gold and silver decorations and giant balloons! Cue squeals. They ordered a couple pizzas and we sat around catching up before heading to bed much too late. 

Ali ordered an actual buffet of breakfast food to be delivered to the house Saturday morning, which we sat around happily eating while watching the Taylor Swift Reputation concert video haha. We got ready and headed to a dog bar that was hosting a “Pawgwarts” day… meaning people dressed up their dogs in Harry Potter scarves and costumes and I don’t feel I need to explain anything else about why I loved this. It was raining though, so we made our way to grab Italian food to go and went over to Carolina Beer Temple while we ate it. 

Group picture of Ali, Jess, Bailey, and Beth
Dogs in Hogwarts scarves
Toilet with a sign on the lid that says "Ministry of Magic this way"
Group selfie

I wanted to take the girls to Pinewood Social House but most of the games were full, so we found a spot upstairs and played Heads Up over a drink instead. We went back to the house to get ready for the evening, leaving enough time to pop open a champagne bottle full of confetti and take a bunch of photos together before the rain ruined our hair for the evening. 

Jess and Bailey
Jess and Ali
Jess and Beth
Beth, Ali, Jess, and Bailey sitting on the couch with birthday balloons

The girls managed to get a late dinner reservation at Fahrenheit, a fancier Charlotte restaurant on the roof of a hotel I had never been to. We ate three courses, laughed when the manager brought out a dessert that mistakenly had “Happy 30th Anniversary” written on the plate in chocolate instead of “Happy 30th Birthday,” enjoyed the views, and talked about our next move.

Girls selfie on the roof overlooking the Charlotte skyline
Jess looking at a cake with a candle lit
Dessert plate that says "Happy 30th Anniversary" written in chocolate

Ali knows a bartender at Roxbury, a nightclub that exclusively plays 80s and 90s dance music, so we decided to head that way. We skipped the line and walked in to find it packed from wall to wall. We walked downstairs to see if it was any less crowded (it wasn’t), but the DJ put glow sticks on our heads and gave me a flashing foam baton so that pretty much solidified we made the right choice. We had a few drinks, sing-screamed along to the best music of our youth, danced like idiots, and eventually caught an Uber back our house… where we all climbed in one bed and took turns trying to FaceTime our guys to see who would answer haha. We’re not as young as we used to be, but I feel like a teenager again when I’m out with these three.

Jess dancing at a club with glow sticks

The next morning, after popping the balloons and picking up the confetti all over the floor from the night before, Ali had to head home and I drove Beth and Bailey over to The Original Pancake House for brunch. Their flight back to Atlanta didn’t leave until the afternoon, so I got on Google Maps and found a scenic overlook of the city and the world’s tiniest nature preserve to walk around before dropping them back off the airport. 

I feel like the luckiest girl to have such smart, successful, thoughtful, and loving friends who would even think to plan a fun girls weekend for me. It was my perfect balance of chilling, eating good food, having a few sweet drinks, talking, dancing, and just the tiniest bit of rowdy fun. I can’t thank them enough for staying by my side all these years and being the friends they are to me. I wouldn’t be who I am without each of them. I love you girls!