Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Best Birthday Present Ever

Flickr user Bennigan

Remember how I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was thankful for booking a secret trip to surprise someone special? Husband thought it was silly for me to say something like that because it would ruin the surprise!


Well, my dear mother (pictured above with my dear father, taken this past summer) doesn’t read this blog – at least, I don’t think she does. I’ve given her the link but she’s so busy being a lawyer with a major Fortune 50 company I’m not sure she looked at it.

Last Friday, I took off from work in order to get on a plane and head to Fort Worth. Husband was able to come with – and we were on a mission! Nothing could stop us…

My mom has been complaining the past few months that we don’t visit enough. We were there for Christmas but other than that, visits have been few and far between. I really miss living in the same city as my family – it is SO tough not to be able to pick up the phone and have coffee with my mom later in the day.

So when my dad and I were talking about what to get mom for her birthday last Friday, I came up with the idea of surprising her in person. She had NO idea we were coming – she was totally surprised!  Since we didn’t end up getting any pictures throughout the whole weekend, words will just have to suffice.

Mom took the day off from work after a long week of meetings and also, because it was her birthday! No one should have to work on their birthday, you know. So Dad set up a lunch date with her. That’s the scene.

7:00 am – Arrive at STL airport, check bags and head to the gate. All is well.

8:00 am – Flight leaves STL, getting a bit nervous now.

9:00 am – Southwest Airlines pilot tells us we’re going to land 20 minutes early. Damnit. More time to kill before we surprise Mom!

9:40 am – Flight lands. Meet up with Dad, grab bags and head to Arlington.

10:15 am – Ask Dad to stop by Walgreens to pick up a card because, of course, I have forgotten one. We’re the present, but you need a card of course!

10:45 am – Head to La Madeleine, our favorite French cafe; commence the waiting.

11 am – Decide that we have a half hour to kill, head to Best Buy; show Dad all the ways we can spend his money on new laptops and TVs and printers for the house.

11:15 am – Mom purse dials me and I proceed to FREAK.OUT. I don’t answer.

11:30 am – Mom calls Dad and says she’ll be running about ten minutes late. That means we have another half hour to kill. NOTE: We were supposed to meet now.

11:45 am – Back at the La Madeleine parking lot, waiting for mom.

11:50 am – Mom calls me AGAIN. She says she saw I called earlier and was wondering how things were. Says she’s headed to lunch with Dad and can we chat. I tell her that I’m heading to lunch and she asks with who. I stumble and then say um, just going to grab a bite. Ask her if I can call her back later after lunch. Hang up and feel even more nervous about the surprise.

11:55 am – Mom drives up; I proceed to squish down in the front seat of Dad’s car in case she sees me. I’m REALLY excited – and so nervous!

12 pm – Drive over from our hiding spot to the front door and go inside.

12:01 pm – Enter the front door, see Mom by the order taker.

12:02 pm – Mom sees me. Then looks to Husband. Then sees Dad behind us.

12:03 pm – Confusion sets in. She looks from me to Husband to Dad and then to me.

12:04 pm – We finally get to each other, hug, and she clearly is confused. We’re supposed to be in St. Louis and she’s in Arlington. What are we doing there?

There are tears and she can’t stop crying and looking at me and hugging me, then hugging Husband and then of course, hugging HER husband.

She looks at me and says “Are you here all weekend?” :) :) :)

Of course we were! We set aside the whole weekend to just do nothing – we ATE a ton, shopped for living room furniture, went to Mass, saw a movie, slept in. It was LOVELY.

My mom said it was the best birthday present EVER – even better than the year she received two copies of Black Beauty. If you knew my mom, you would realize how much of a compliment that is! She’s a big reader. :)

I missed her again the minute we stepped into the airport to head back to St. Louis. It’s so hard to leave, because the visits are never long enough.


  1. Wait just a minute. Are you from Fort Worth or Arlington?!? Where did you go to high school?! Did you go to La Madeline's on South Cooper at the Parks mall, or did you go up north?

    But also, your weekend surprise sounds just wonderful! I'd love to surprise our families every once in a while and we only live a 3 hour drive away. Which means we must be lazy ;) So thoughtful and fun of you!

  2. I know how awesome it is to be with family. My parents are half way around the globe.

    I can totally feel what you are saying :)

  3. How fun! What a great birthday gift for your mom!

  4. @lawschoolwife - How crazy is that! So um, yeah, I went to the second half of high school in Ft. Worth- it was a private Catholic co-ed school. We went to the La Madeleine at the north one because it was on the way home.

    Where are you from?!

  5. @lawschoolwife - Please do! It's on my profile. :)

  6. THAT IS SO CUTE!!!!! :) You are awesome. :) Yeah for Moms! :)

  7. Oh, how fun and exciting!! That IS the best birthday present ever!

  8. Awww what a cute story! I live close to my parents but I know it's hard to be away from them-I'm glad you got to spend the whole weekend just hanging out!

  9. You are such a great daughter! I bet you made her year!