A slow start to the week, but then a lot of excitement at the end! Got to watch the new Peter Rabbit movie and it was so cute. I really enjoyed it and giggled at the cute animals the whole time. Brian and I also did a mock interview with a Biola student for an Apple interview, and really enjoyed talking with him. He’s a student that I’ve mentored the past 4 years and he’s ready to graduate now! Praying he could get a job at Apple in one of our teams. I have really enjoyed being able to talk more with people throughout my time here, especially with students who are looking for career guidance.
The week started to pick up with lots of excitement as we neared the middle of the week, because this week was Brian’s birthday! The other main things that I worked on throughout the week was cleaning up after our visitors were here, getting some things sold off from our house, and looking for new tenants for our Livermore house. Brian turned 30 on Wednesday, and I made some cupcakes and took them to the office for everyone. We didn’t do a whole lot on his birthday, although I tried to make it special with a nice meal. I actually almost forgot to do something, because I had been planning a big surprise party for the weekend. I realized when someone at the office asked if I was bringing in cupcakes, that I should do SOMETHING so that Brian didn’t get suspicious; because it would be strange to not do anything! The end of the week bought a lot of fun, as I was preparing for Brian’s Surprise party, and also for my mom to come! Lots of prep throughout the week.
With my mom coming, it was a big ordeal. We had to get her a passport, expedited, and then she was going to fly Space-A, which means “Space Available”. So if she shows up to the airport and there’s no space, she doesn’t get on. The good part is that it’s only $18 to come here. The bad part is, you never know if you’ll get on. We were a little worried because Spring Break was the week before, and people had a really hard time getting off island the week before. I said that might have been a good thing, because then all of those people weren’t trying to Space-A back on! After Daily watching the number of seats available, we decided to take the chance and have her drive the 8 hours from Knoxville down to Jacksonville. My mom stayed in the Navy Lodge on Jacksonville Naval Air Station, and showed up at 5am to try to get a ticket on Friday. She did get a ticket, as there weren’t very many people even who were trying to fly Space-A.
One of the reasons we had her fly Space-A is because tickets to get here are at least $650 from Fort Lauderdale, and then she would have had to have purchased a ticket to get down to FLL. It’s just so expensive and far! So we decided to take the chance to have her come, but the only problem is that it’s risky. Since she’s not military (and neither are we), every time we fly Space-A, we are a category 6.5 (they normally only have category 6, as the lowest on the totem pole, but because it’s really hard to get to GTMO, they let non-military people fly as a 6.5). However, this means that you are the last person to get a ticket. Anyone that shows up with a lower category number, even if they were behind you in line, they get your seat!
So she finally made it, although the flight was supposed to leave on Friday morning, but there was a mechanical failure, so she ended up spending the night in Jacksonville with my friend Christie who lives there. I picked her up 3 hours before the surprise party was to start and she got to work helping me make pizza dough for the party.
It was an Italian themed party, since Brian loves pizza! We had a make your own pizza station, and an Italian history/facts game since Brian likes history and things like that. He was really surprised. I’m glad, because I thought I kind of gave too many hints about making him leave the house and such, however, he thought my mom and I were just making a special dinner for him to celebrate his birthday with her. Little did he know or expect that there would be 30 people in our (small!) house waiting for him to walk in the door! It was great. I am so thankful to all the friends who showed up to celebrate him, and was grateful that the food and decorations turned out well! We had just enough pizza doughs for everyone (I had been planning this for months, and so had Christie bring down GF pizza dough mixes when she came here last time).
Got to show Mom our church and she enjoyed seeing us lead the music that week!
Other interesting things: Found a pet cemetery on my walk! Didn’t know they had that, but I guess where would they bury them otherwise?
Went on a long bike ride with Mom toward the Cuban fence. We didn’t make it all the way there (and plus, you can’t go all the way without an escort), but we did end up going on a 6 mile ride or so!
Also, picture of the kids hunting easter eggs from our time last week at the beach. So much fun!
More pictures of Brian’s party and the video of his surprise are here.
As for the Little C’s? Jado got stuck in a tree, and Clemmy is still practicing his jumping over the fence, and getting really good, much to our chagrin. They were scared out of their minds with so many people in our house for the birthday party! Poor guys. I haven’t ever heard Clemmy hiss so much before! Brian gave them both a treat after the trauma. Here’s Jado enjoying his almond milk.