Monday, November 19, 2012

Birthday Weekend

This past weekend, Scott and I flew to Chicago. Scott was helping to plan and organize the Southwest portion of the Magnificent Mile Light Festival - and since it was my birthday on Friday, I tagged along as a volunteer (and also because who wants to be alone on their birthday).

On the plane ride over, one of the flight attendants spoke into the intercom and announced that they had the privilege to fly with someone special this flight.

Everyone looked around and I was focused on my knitting - not really paying attention - and then they said my name. I got up out of my seat, face beet red, and made my way up to the front of the cabin which seemed miles away as everyone clapped and cheered like I had won a gold medal in the Olympics.

Scott had secretly told the flight attendants about my birthday when he told me he was going to the bathroom. Oh Scott. So sneaky.

When at the front, the flight attendants crowned me with peanuts, gave me a "birthday cake" made from a roll of toilet paper and led the entire cabin in singing Happy Birthday. The entire time my face was the color of a tomato, but it was fun.

Several people said Happy Birthday to me while walking back to my seat, and even in the airport because they recognized the crazy girl with the peanuts on her head.

Oh Southwest Airlines! I've never felt so special, LUVed, and so embarrassed on a flight before.  A great memory and what a great way to kick off the birthday weekend!

When we got to the hotel, there was a FedEx envelope waiting for us (my birthday present) and I think Scott was surprised that I made it up to our hotel room before I ripped it open. Inside were two tickets to see Les Misérables that night!

I had never seen Les Mis before, so I was pretty excited. And it was fantastic! I had read the book not too long ago so I new the basic frame of the story, but other than that, I was a Les Mis newbie. It was an amazing birthday present and a great surprise!

The next day, the weekend got better with the opportunity to be in the Magnificent Mile Light Festival Holiday Parade! Southwest Airlines was parade sponsor that year and the team of parade volunteers from SWA got to walk in the parade and bring Rudolf down the Mag Mile!

And of course, after the parade we topped the night and the weekend off by getting some Chicago Deep Dish Stuffed pizza - because its what you do. And it was as delicious as ever. Scott managed to eat two slices, which is amazing because I tapped out after one. It was just so filling, so good and a great end to a fantastic birthday weekend!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Papa Louie

My grandfather passed away not too long ago. He had struggled with lung cancer for about a year until he decided it was time to stop fighting and go meet up with his Father in Heaven.

Unfortunately, I was gone for most of that year - either off at school or visiting my parents in Thailand that I didn't get to see him sick. I didn't get to see him become weaker, so his death shocked and surprised me because in my mind, he was still healthy.

My last memory of Papa was at my wedding reception. He seemed healthy. He laughed and smiled his big toothy grin. You wouldn't think just by looking at him that he was struggling.

Papa was always so full of love. I have so many memories of big hugs and service. He never hesitate to help someone out and he always made sure that those most near and dear to his heart felt his love and knew that he cared for them. I know I will see him again and I am so grateful for the time on this earth I was able to spend with him.