(Amanda Lauer / Slots winner)

How do you make your big day even bigger?

Ask Nanaimo woman Amanda Lauer, who recently won a cool $250,000 just days before celebrating her birthday; talk about a gift that keeps on giving!

Lauer won the life-changing quarter million dollars by playing a game called “Bonanza”, an online slots game on PlayNow.com.

“I had realized I was a winner, but I didn’t realize it was that much,” said Lauer.

“I just looked at my screen and it took a few extra seconds to really process. I went downstairs to tell my dad and I think we were both really shocked.”

After Lauer played through a few free spins she acquired for Bonanza, she made a few more spins when the symbols on the reels lined up to make her $250,000 richer.

The recent university graduate plans to use some of her winnings towards a down payment on a home in Nanaimo, as well as to pay off student loans.

With plans to work in the social-services sector, Lauer says the win gives her the freedom needed to pursue her dream career.

“It’s huge to come out of university with no student debt, and it really takes some of that stress off your shoulders,” Lauer said.

“I know $250,000 won’t last a lifetime, but I do feel blessed at this moment.”