On Sunday evening (October 9), I boarded a plane in Salt Lake City and landed in Fiji (after layovers in LA and Sydney) on Tuesday evening (October 11), which means that, thanks to the International Dateline, I almost missed my 50th birthday!
I’m not sure how I feel about that! It’s a milestone birthday, for sure. But since I don’t feel 50, I don’t mind pretending it almost never happened! (smile)
But I can’t really do that this year. In fact, the festivities began well before Tuesday. I mentioned in my Founder’s Circle blog that our wonderful demonstrators surprised me there with a box full of hand-stamped (is there any other kind?) birthday cards, along with a pile of 6x6 scrapbook pages. I didn’t open them all at Founder’s Circle, choosing instead to take them home and save them for the real birthday celebration.
Which I guess took place on Friday night!
My sweet husband and girls planned a surprise party for me! You’d think at 50 I’m too old (and too wise) to not figure the surprise out (the girls said later that each of them had almost blown it several times throughout the week). But I’m gullible. I always have been and probably always will be.
When Sterling suggested we go out to eat on Friday night, I was all for it! Shanna has been out of town this week, and since she’s the one who normally cooks, it made perfect sense to me that we’d eat out.
I didn’t blink twice when I saw my brother Kurt and my niece and her new husband at the restaurant. I gave them both hugs and teased Kurt about coming into town without calling me. “I was planning on it,” he said vaguely. “Just hadn’t gotten around to it yet. . . “
Sterling got several text messages throughout dinner . . . nothing too unusual about that, although it did seem like there were a few more than normal. After dinner, when he suggested we head across the street for a yogurt dessert, that didn’t raise any red flags either. I was just happy to be with my sweetheart. I had no idea that everyone else was at home, frantically getting everything ready and texting Sterling to stall a little longer because not everyone had arrived.
We finally headed home when Sterling got a text and said, “Oh, Sage and Jason are at the house, and Jason needs to talk to me about a few things. . . .” Since Sage was going with me to Fiji and I knew she had a mile-long list of things to do before leaving, I told Sterling we’d better hurry.
Our garage is in the basement of our home, so when we walked inside from the garage I heard a few footsteps above. Again, I didn’t think anything of it, just assuming it was Sage and Jason and the boys walking around. When I got to the top of the stairs, though, there was a flash of light, a shout of surprise, and I was caught completely unawares by a roomful of family (including Kurt) and friends--what a great way to celebrate!
I gave everyone hugs, we enjoyed goodies (with Shanna gone, the other girls and a friend had divvied up the treat assignments), and then I opened presents! That’s the last thing I expected, and can I just say that I was absolutely spoiled with so many thoughtful gifts. I couldn’t have asked for a better party!
And it didn’t stop there. I took a few long minutes to enjoy my Founder’s Circle box this weekend. I loved looking at the pages (many of which had pictures of me with different demonstrators throughout the years) and reading the cards. Thanks to all of you who participated in that, especially Janet and Dee for organizing it all.
When we boarded the plane in Sydney to fly over to Fiji, a couple of demonstrators were on the flight, as well as Aaron, our country manager, and his wife, Karen. They all wished me happy birthday, so I guess it wasn’t a secret. And when we had our mid-flight snack, Sage told me it was my birthday treat!
We were tired when we landed, but staff members greeted us and whisked us away for one last birthday surprise—a tasty dinner. It was fun to finish the day off with wonderful people who love Stampin’ Up! as much as I do. (I would have taken a photo, but our luggage hasn't made it to Fiji yet, and Sage and I definitely feel like we've been in the same clothes for a long, long time. . . )
So, I guess I’m 50! Can’t hardly believe it. While I have to admit there are a few more aches and pains than there used to be, and I do need more sleep than in years gone by, I just don’t feel 50. Or at least, I don’t feel like what I thought 50 should feel like. Maybe after all these years, it turns out that 50 isn’t too bad after all!
I know I’m enjoying it so far!