Saturday, June 21, 2008

200th post...30th birthday surprises, flooding & much needed vacation time

flooded street
sewer backed up = buying lots of bleach and garbage bags
The girls!
Ready to hit the road!
Packed with plenty of extra room!
  • Yeah there may have been a major flood here the night Thursday June 12th, our street looking more like a river than a road...
  • Yes, we had sewer backup into our basement that night...
  • We had cold showers for the next four days prior to leaving for vacation...
  • I may have needed to take a sick day on Friday the 13th to sort through the remains of the basement with my hubby...

That was way way way outdone by what was to come on Saturday, June 14th and the days that followed. Good always outweighs bad and this was a major example of that!
On Saturday, it started out much like most of my Saturdays, Trevor went to work in the morning, mom came over to watch Emma (aka ERM) while I went to Weight Watchers (happily down another 2 pounds for a total of 31.5!) Then we headed to Milwaukee to shop for the day. As the day went on, mom's compaints of stomach problems and just not feeling well increased and she wanted to try to cut our day short. Thinking back, I never knew her to be such a baby like that since she's a migraine sufferer there's not much she can't handle...but, I was clueless! On the way to drop Emma & I at home she said we should stop at her house to pick up some laundry of mine she had and why don't we come in for a minute so Emma could say hi to Grampy. Ok, fine, kind of wanted to get home to start packing for our trip on Monday but no problem!
WOW! So glad I was not a brat about stopping at her house...I walk into the kitchen, then see the Nesco roaster on the dining room table, hmm, why do you have your roaster out, cleaning the basement still? Then, see a big 30 on the dining room table at the same moment I'm met with screams of SURPRISE and flying confetti being shot out of little guns, seriously, six-shooter confetti guns! TOTAL shock and surprise is then met with DOUBLE SURPRISE when I spot my fabulous blogger BFF Mary (Mert), double-take, see her hubs John on the couch, daughters Emma (aka ERK) and Anna next to him, again, double-take...tears immediately! I am telling you, this was the BEST birthday ever, the best surpise ever, I've always envied those who get surprise parties and admittedly was a little disappointed when my 30th birthday came and went with our usual birthday dinner at mom's and dinner out with my dad and nothing too special...yeah, spoiled brat I know...but really, I kind of had hoped for a little more fun for the big 3-0 and this was WAY more than I even could have hoped for!! I don't know how that many people (all of my family, a few friends and especially Mary) could keep that under their hat! I just had said to Mary the day before my actual birthday on the 10th that the only way I'd have a better 30th birthday is if she could be here to share it with me...I bet it was killing her to have to keep that secret and not tell me that in less than a week I would have her and her family here to share it with me! I give her hubs John BIG points for joining in and agreeing to this trip all the way from Iowa to be here for this surprise! I will never ever forget it and totally plan to repay the visit by going to visit them in Iowa sometime. We already have talked about visiting each other each year on our birthdays...maybe we can make it even more often since I was surpised to find out it was only about a 4 hour drive. Considering I've spent much of the last week driving to and from here to St. Louis & Memphis, 4 hours sounds like something I could totally handle doing from time to time!
I LOVE Mary even more in person than I ever imagined and honestly really do love her girls Anna & Emma & hubby John. They are all such fantastic people that my family cannot stop talking about them either. I didn't feel awkward or anything, just felt so filled with happiness and so amazed, like I was in a dream...still can't believe it! We truly enjoyed a wonderful day and another fantastic visit the next morning before Mary, John & the girls headed to the Milwaukee Zoo before they went home.
Mary, John, Anna & Emma THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart, and thank you to all of my family and friends who made my 30th birthday one that will surely never be topped!

After Mary and her family left Sunday I worked on packing for our trip and I am telling, I still felt like I was floating on cloud 9, I know it sounds corny, but really, it was such a special weekend and the timing of it just after that disgusting flooding and just before leaving on our much-needed was perfect!

Anyway, we packed up all of our luggage and entertainment for Emma and headed to St. Louis & Memphis Monday after some cold showers (our gas was off after the flooding and just got turned on today now that we were home for the gas-man to pay us a visit)!

We had a great time, I think top 3 favorite things this time around were:
  • Grant's Farm in St. Louis, MO with the Clydesdales, bottle-feeding the goats and all of the other animals

  • Memphis Zoo in Memphis, TN...lots of typical zoo animals but seemed to have a good variety of monkey, tons of different exotic birds and a beautiful carousel that Emma loved riding

  • Neely's in Memphis, TN...the best BBQ! Wow, that food was fantastic! Their little restaurant in Memphis is not what I expected from Food Network stars, I did think it was more "hole in the wall"-ish than I expected but aren't a lot of great restaurants?

We spent a lot of time on the road and I insisted on driving all of the way because that's just how I am, I would have nagged my husband too much had I let him drive! But it wsa great, in between all of the driving we had SO MUCH FUN! Thinking back to the last few days, it just all seems a lot like a dream, starting with the flood and the surprise and ending with the as I finish this post, I'm off to finish the planning for Emma's 3rd birthday party tomorrow! I'm sure we'll have fun and we're hoping for nice weather to grill out and sit outside a bit! It will be VERY difficult to go back to the piles of work sitting at my desk at work. I'm not looking forward to it, wouldn't life be grand if we could just party and vacation all the while?

You can check out all of the pictures in my Picasa web albums but I've posted just a few here, enjoy!

Here's slideshows...


~Virginia~ said...

i love that you and mert got to meet! how fun! :)

sorry you're suffering through the flooding/swamp! glad you were able to take a little well-deserved vacation break! and congrats on the additional 2 pounds!

Mert said...

I am so fortunate to have a hubs who is willing to be dragged a long... but really he owed me since I have been to his friend's houses and have always been a complete stranger to these people LOL! Like I said though, John had an awesome time, and had just as much fun as I did, and as you saw... wasn't shy a bit, which is VERY unusual. Which meant he felt very welcome and at ease :D

GF, I'm glad to hear that I didn't overwhelm you with my general self and general dorkiness. I loved spending time with you and your family, and your friends are awesome too!

BTW, it's funny how our cheetah pics are similar from the zoos!

I'm so glad you guys had a nice trip, and made it back safe, considering all of the flooding!

I hope ERM had a wonderful birthday party!

Anonymous said...

Happy everything all around! And that surprise sounds like it was awesome. I love how you never suspected anything while you were shopping with your mom and ERM. I love that too, ERM and ERK. Teehee.

I'm glad your vacation was such a blast. DO you plan everything out ahead of time, or just a few stops and wing it inbetween? I'd like to do a road trip next year with everyone.

And another congrats to 2 more pounds. You go girl!