Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sara: Mama D's 50th Birthday Surprise

My mom turned 50 today, October 30, 2011.

She is a loving wife, best friend and mother to 3 daughters, and super-grandma extraordinaire to 3 beautiful children who call her "Gaga."

Gaga is, however, only one of her nicknames. We have also lovingly dubbed her Kitty. Ever seen That 70's Show? Remember Eric's closet drinking hysterical mother? Well my mom also enjoys an occasional cocktail and has been known to spike her coffee with Kaluha.

The fellow gals with which I share this blog, have also provided another nickname for my mother: Mama D. It all started when  we decided to go to trivia night at a local bar, invited my mom, and named ourselves, "Mama D's Chickadees." From there it stuck, and became forever added to her list of alibis.

Anywho. Mama D has turned 50. This weekend we planned a surprise treasure hunt for her around town. I wrote cute little rhyming phrases that would lead her from one stop to the next.

So her travels led her all over our wee village, starting at a flower shop where she picked up a pretty bouquet I pre-ordered for her and her huge obnoxious-look-at-me-I'm-50-birthday-girl-pin.
(The Birthday girl pin I made for Mama D! 50 years later and still as cute!)

From there, she ventured on to a local pizza shop, where both my sister and myself have worked. Here, she picked up an over night bag with a wrapped gift inside (PJs) and another clue that led her..... to the drive-through at the bank! They ladies here sent her out her next clue and a travel-sized toothpaste (all wrapped up of course--she was under strict orders not to open any gifts yet!). She was then directed to the local salon where she goes to ger her hair done, where she was presented with another gift and clue (mini shampoo and conditioner, and her favorite perfume). The next clue, which I'm sure was her favorite, led her to the local bar we frequent for a much needed "OMG I'm turning 50" drink. Next, the clues took her to the grocery store in town where she went to pick up her chocolate peanut butter birthday cake :)

(As a side note here.. when my sister went to check that everything was in place on Friday, the clueless woman behind the cake counter was fully prepared to write "Happy Birthday Pick" on the cake.... because I had asked the lady who I gave the order to, to just put in a pick that said happy birthday. )

Finally she was led to a local Italian restaurant, where she was told she would be picking up take-out for her dinner. When she arrived, however, she was greeted by 11 smiling faces and a very off-key rendition of happy birthday in which we all called her gaga.

It was here that she opened her gifts, and put it together that she would be going somewhere! My dad had made arrangements at a Bed and Breakfast nearby for the next evening. Her treasure hunt had also helped her pack :)

This birthday surprise was very special and couldn't have gone smoother. My mother is an amazing, kind-hearted and completely self-sacrificing woman. She has been the ultimate role model for me and I was so glad to be able to put something like this together for her special weekend.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Bryn: The Introductions.

Throughout my 26 years I have always had a group of girlfriends.  My very first friend was my little sis Jill. Although we were oil & vinegar in the personality department, we have always been close and have remained closed. Then I had my tight clique of pals throughout grade school (nicknamed JAB for our initials…brilliant). Then onto high school I had my new besties. (nicknamed the Fab Four…vain?) College came & I joined Chi Omega sorority and made some exceptional friends there as well.

I have always appreciated the gossip sessions, shopping buddies, and junk food movie marathons that come along with good friends. It was great having my pals through the silly little breakups, school dances, college parties, and lazy summers. But it wasn’t until a few years ago when I got a true grasp of real and longstanding friendship. Kayla, Sara, & Kayla are the kind of friends that you hold tight to and don’t let go. My friends let me be my crazy self. They are funny girls who don’t stare at their cell phones at a dinner out or laugh at everything a cute guy says (unless its actually funny of course). They aren’t the type to only hang out when its “time to party”. My girls are interesting to listen to and are the very best listeners themselves. My friends don’t compete with each other for attention or try to outdo the other. They don’t take a mistake and never let you live it down. I can talk to KS&K about beliefs & fears or shoes & travel.  These 3 girls are really everything you could want in a gal pal.

It took me a long time to write my entry because giving the girls the credit they are due seemed like a daunting task. It was hard to know where to begin when the moment I think of one wonderful thing to say another pops into my head.  I could literally go on for pages and pages letting the world wide web know what makes my friends so special. Instead I will keep it simple.

If a tornado swept me up to the land of OZ I would need my girls. I would need Kayla to be my heart.  Kayla sees the beauty in every person she meets. She loves people without condition and there never seems to be an end to her kindness. There isn’t a grudge Kayla has held or an unkind word spoken to a friend. With Kayla, what you see is what you get too. There is no sugary sweetness to a person’s face that is followed by a nasty remark behind their back. It’s amazing to me just how genuine this girl is. I am so grateful to have reconnected with my old friend. Sara, I’d need her there to be my brain. She is 3 years my junior and because of her maturity I have to remind myself that she hasn’t reached her quarter life crisis just yet. Sara is thoughtful about every decision and is detailed in her planning. She is constantly taking the reigns on organizing wine tours, festival outings, and outdoor concerts. If it weren’t for Sara “the gals” would not have as much together time as we have.  Sara has the initiative to make things happen whether it’s weekend fun or finding the job she wants and deserves. Sara never seems to stop learning either. She has a thirst for knowing that I wish more people had. This girl has got her act together. K2 would obviously need to be there to be my courage. Nothing shakes Kayla up. She is brave and bold and afraid of no one.  Even when the going gets tough, Kayla carries on taking control of her own life. I love that Kayla says what she means and means what she says. When I am out with Kayla I feel like we’re the coolest people in the room because she just oozes confidence and sex appeal (weird? I hope not kayla!) Guys love her and girls want to be her. If ever I feel insecure, Kayla talks sense into me and genuinely gives me the encouraging words that I need.

It’s amazing what good girlfriend can do for your mind & soul. I feel like I am a better person for associating myself with these ladies. I really look forward to turning this blog into a story of our friendship.