Drum Roll Please!

The morning after Ryan's surprise party, I woke up feeling complete satisfaction. I had pulled off a complete surprise, and Ryan was surrounded by nearly 30 of his favorite people in the world! Ryan had already left the house before I had woken up because he had to play guitar that Sunday morning at church. While I laid in bed, it hit me - what was I thinking having ANOTHER surprise?! The party had truly been plenty, and the celebration was perfect. Why did I plan MORE surprises???

We went to church and did the usual routine afterward - nap. The rest of the week went by as if nothing fun and exciting was ahead. My last day of work was on Thursday (May 27th), and I spent Friday finishing last minute details. After Ryan came home from work, we grabbed a quick bite to eat and went to our friends, Dalia and Kevin's, house for a couple hours. Thank goodness we went because it for one, it's always fun to see them, and two, it was a GREAT distraction from the butterflies in my stomach. I had never pulled off a surprise like the one to come, and I would have been flipping out otherwise.

After bading Dalia, Kevin, and Baby Ava goodbye, we drove back home. I was getting all giddy inside but was trying to stay calm. When we got home, I went inside to get Kya so that we could all go on a walk when I heard dogs barking and car doors shutting outside. A smile spread across my face - it was finally time! I had been planning this moment and this surprise since February!

I walked to the driveway with a surprised look on my face (who knew I was such a good actress?) while I said hello to my dad, Danette, and their dogs. Ryan was asking, "What brings you guys here?" which was appropriate since they live 2 1/2 hours away. I was asking the same kinds of questions, trying to keep the surprise a surprise for just a few more minutes. My dad replied, "Oh we were just in the area...." Hilarious! We went to the backyard so the dog could play, and I went inside to get Ryan's last birthday present. As I walked back to the backyard, Ryan smiled when he saw the present and asked, "What is that?" I said, "You didn't think your birthday is over, did you? You know I like celebrating birthdays all month long." He opened his present and inside saw guidebooks and a possible itinerary for a trip to NEW YORK CITY! His expression was priceless - it's like he could not process what he was seeing. Stunned is a good word for it!

I explained that we were leaving the next morning for the airport, and that Dad and Danette were taking Noah and Kya back to South Whitley while we were away. My dad said, "Tell him when you get back," and I said, "Tuesday." Ryan's eyes widened like a deer in headlights, and he said, "TUESDAY?!"

Let's back up...

You see, I had asked Ryan to take off the Tuesday after Memorial Day so that we could have a four day weekend together. He said it would be no problem! When I had asked him a week before our trip if he had taken off work on Tuesday, he said he hadn't and that he had no recollection of me asking him to take that day off work. I could have KILLED HIM! Ryan told me that he had a meeting in Terre Haute with his boss on Tuesday, so he couldn't take that day off. GRR! I went upstairs and tried not to panic. I called a lady he works with named Jeanette and told her all about our surprise trip to NYC. She assured me that it was no problem. She would talk to Ryan's boss and get back to me. The following Monday, Jeanette emailed me back to say that everything was clear! Ryan's boss would have the meeting without him, and he wished us well. Thank you, Jeanette (and Mark)!!!

So back to the present, Ryan says, "I have that meeting in Terre Haute!" I said, "Don't worry. I got it cleared with your boss." He couldn't believe it. Then, the trip to NYC really started to sink in. He started getting really excited! I hadn't been able to pack for the trip, but the laundry was done and ready to go. After putting Noah to bed and visiting with Dad and Danette, we packed our suitcases and talked about the various things I had planned for our trip. We both were so excited!

After a good night's sleep, Ryan went on a run while I did some last minute packing. We played with Noah and visited with Dad and Danette for a bit until it was time to go. After a bit of a teary goodbye on my part - we had never left Noah for 4 days - my dad drove us to Kevin and Dalia's house, as Kevin was taking us to the airport (thanks, Kevin). We said goodbye to my dad and left for the airport. Kevin is a pilot, so it was interesting to hear some behind-the-scenes stories on our drive. Thanks again, Kevin, for taking us that day! We walked into the airport with our bags in hand.

Goodbye, Indiana! We landed in Newark, New Jersey a few hours later and the fun began!

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