I'd been planning a surprise party for my husband, since July, to celebrate his retirement from the Air Force. I started the planning so early b/c I know that all of his friends and family live hours away. His parents and his sister and brother live about 7 hours away, but his cousins and grandma (whom he hadn't seen in over 20 yrs) live in New Jersey, so they are a plane trip away and I wanted to give them time to plan ahead. I found out from my sister in law that they got a plane ticket for Mike's grandma and that she would be coming to the party. I was SO excited!!! Mike had his official retirement ceremony in November. He basically begged his parents to come and I felt so sad for him. I wanted to just tell him "Look. I have a party planned for you in December and they are coming down then." But I didn't, and I'm so glad I didn't! My parents did drive down to surprise him at the ceremony though. I continued to keep his party a secret from him. As the party drew near, I was just so excited! Then Saturday came...
RAIN, RAIN, RAIN....all day long. Early that morning I get a call from my mother in law. They are not coming. I was so disappointed. That was the main thing I was looking forward to for Mike. I couldn't shake that disappointment. Then things just started falling apart. The rain wouldn't stop. My mom had to attend a funeral and was running late to get back to the house to help set up. My dad wasn't feeling well. I was doing everything by myself and was so overwhelmed. The rain continued and just got worse and worse. Then, city wide flooding. Basically the flood of 09. Of all days!!!!! I called the DJ and asked her to come an hour later. Then the text messages started coming in. People couldn't make it due to the weather. I just kept saying the serenenity prayer over and over again b/c this was out of my hands. All of my planning and hard work seemed to be washed away in this stupid flood. But the party was going to go on. We were in a hotel in Algiers, so we drove back to the hotel to get dressed and there was horrible street flooding. By 8:30, the rain had stopped and when we left the hotel room the water was receding. Thank God. I sent a text to a few people saying that the party was still on and that we would just start late. Then on the ride to the party, I notice that my camera bag is empty!!!! No camera. Oh my God the devil was so busy :( Then Jayden is in the backseat saying "Wayne where are you?!?!" He gets frantic over that b/c Wayne is no where to be found. We left it in the hotel room...Turning around was not an option b/c of the street flooding and we couldn't be sure what roads were blocked or not. BIG SIGH and I was fighting back tears. My cousin called at that point, to say she wasn't coming. I just said "okay, it's fine b/c I don't think anyone is going o make it. But what can I do??" My cousin heard the defeat in my voice and she got dressed and came to the party. She told me that by the time she got dressed and on the road the water went down.
We got to the house and my mom had the house decorated so nicely! She screamed out SURPRISE about 4 or 5 times but Mike never caught on. My mom had to actually say "Mike, surprise, this is YOUR party!!" and we showed him his cake. Then he caught on! It was so funny. I was disappointed at first b/c I had high expectations for this party. I'm still disappointed in some of my family who never seem to come out to anything, but in the end I know that everyone who knew how important this was for us was there and celebrated with us. By the time the party the got started the rain was gone and so was the water. A few more people came by and said all of the roads were clear, but fog was setting in really thick. We ended up having a really nice time with those that did show up. It turned into a very fun night despite all of the set backs. I'm so proud of my husband!
Pictures were taken, but I didn't have my camera so I have to wait until I get the pictures from my sister and my brother. I'll share them when I get them :)
Contemporary Outdoor Kitchen
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