When my friend Darla mentioned having a birthday party for me, I agreed only because it was a good excuse for a get-together with dear friends from high school.
"No presents, though!" I told her. "Make sure you tell everyone 'no presents'"!
I knew she would still go crazy on food and decorating... she's a Master Hostess. The Diva of Detail.
But I was still surprised by these...
The next big surprise was turning a corner and seeing faces I didn't expect to see. Faces of friends who live hours and hours away, like Patti who even traveled with her margarita machine and the necessary ingredients for her delicious 80 calorie margaritas...
I was pretty sure my friend Annie was going to be there, even though she and husband Dan had some car issues they had to straighten out before driving in from Galveston. And I knew she was bringing some of her beautiful paintings.
But I'd only seen photos of them on Facebook and Etsy up until Saturday. In person they are even more amazingly beautiful.
Getting to take two home with me was certainly a sweet surprise! (Thank you, sweet, talented Annie!)
(you can see more of Annie's paintings in her Etsy Shop)
But as if those weren't enough surprises for this 53-year-old heart, they made me sit down while Patti read a poem she composed for me... which made me cry...
and that ended like this:
So here's a little something to help you get that damn book written!
Then they plopped this huge box in front of me.
That's how I felt as I stripped the paper away and realized these sneaky, wonderful people had somehow managed to give me a new computer. A brand spanking new giNORmous Mac.
My husband and Darla were the main conspirators. Oh, sneaky, sneaky...
He had even gone by there earlier in the week (when he told me he was working late!) and loaded some photos on it!
I'm still not sure who all is responsible - I know my kids were as well as some people who couldn't make it to the party. Darla promised to let me know, and as soon as I'm through with thank you notes, I'm taping their photos to my wall. I'll feel their eyes on me when I'm working, reminding me to stick with it. Whether it's warranted or not, they're putting their faith in me to finish my book.
Or maybe they were just really tired of hearing me complain about my old computer. I know Tom was!
Whatever their reasons, I still feel breathless and blown away when I think of their generosity and the depth of their friendship. It will be hard to repay them, but I'll do my best.
"You don't have to have anything in common with people you've known since you were five. With old friends, you've got your whole life in common."
- Lyle Lovett