January 29, 2011

Northern Exposure

The Monday after we arrived in Utah for the Christmas holidays, 16 inches of snow plummeted to the ground. It was Dean's first experience with so much white stuff, so I bundled him up and turned him into my kind of snow angel.

He had a gay ol' time, though I worried about his cold tolerance. I shouldn't have - once I got him back inside and undressed, I realized he was sweating up a storm in that thing. I need one in my size.

January 28, 2011

Best Early Birthday Present EVER

I got a message on my phone weeks ago from someone I didn't know but whose area code was unmistakably from Utah. She said I was to reserve a particular weekend in January to stay in town, prepare our guest room, and don't ask questions. I was perplexed, intrigued. But with planning to leave for Christmas and everything that went with that, it slipped my mind. I figured that with no more notice or clues, it probably wouldn't end up being anything.

I think I mentioned it to Ted during our 3 weeks in Utah, but I'm not sure.

Sleep deprivation does many awful things to one's brain and body.

Then after we were back, I got a letter with no return address, postmarked Salt Lake City. In it was the same instruction, all typed out.

So mysterious!!!

As the day approached (and I told the news to Ted), we tried to figure out just who it could be. It had to be someone who knows I love (LOVE) surprises, but who would also have the gall to just tell me to be ready for, well, any ol' shmo.

But shmoes they were not! At the stroke of midnight Thursday night, there was a knock on my door and I opened it to behold....


I didn't get a picture of their arrival because I was too busy picking up my jaw off the floor. My bestest college friends all left their husbands and multiple children with babysitters and carpools and pre-made meals so they could hop on a couple of planes and fly all day to see me. I'm still shocked over it all.

Like all bestest college friends, we didn't have to do much to have a grand weekend. We ordered pizza, watched The Notebook, played Speed Scrabble and Mexican Train, made deep-dish cookies and grilled cheese sandwiches. And we laughed and laughed and laughed!

Amid the cacophony, we did manage to get out of the house for a little sightseeing, hence the Duke Chapel in the background and the grand doors below. There was someone practicing a most incredible organ in the Chapel while we were there, and Shannon, a rather fab organist herself, was in heaven. I, however, was in heaven the whole weekend and still haven't been brought down.

Shan, Val, Ker-dog, thank you so much for your many sacrifices to fly across the country to grant me a most fabulous few days. I heart you guys!

The Cooling Rack

Baked goods are only half the story...