Monday, July 25, 2011

Who Needs a Bow?

I was looking over my week, which happens to be filled with birthdays of people I love, when I thought about my friend Kelly's daughter Megan turning 17 on Wednesday. I first had a heart attack that such a thing is even possible because she was just 12 yesterday, and then remembered that in the commotion of all the emotional things happening last July I forgot to tell you all about her 16th birthday!

Why would you care? Mostly because I got to be involved in the celebration and took lots of pictures. Which means I have a story that I've yet to tell you. :)

It was just a few days after Dad died and Kelly was at my house helping to keep me occupied, when she told me the big news that they had gotten Miss Megan a car for her 16th birthday. She also told me they were planning on having it in the driveway on her birthday with a big red bow.

And for the first time since I got the call about Dad's death, this news jolted me wide awake.

Not because they were giving her a car, but because they were just giving it to her. Without hoopla.

If you were to know Megan, you would know that hoopla must be involved because she takes embarrassing other people on their birthdays very seriously. So I told Kelly that unless there was a treasure hunt and embarrassment planned, they could not give her the car.


The first step was to make the signs. So I got out markers and paper and we started strategizing who would be involved and where.

It started with her mom at home giving her the first clue, after making her dress in ugly clothes.

Because ugly clothes are always a good first step.


The clue sent her on a chase to find her grandma {on the left} at our favorite Pretzel Maker in the mall. And Grandma Mary Jo did not disappoint as she gave her a ridiculous hat to wear and asked every single cute young man in the mall if they wanted to sing Happy Birthday to Megan.

After traipsing her all around, she gave the next clue to find her Great Aunt Karen {on the right} at our typical birthday dinner restaurant, Tokyo. Karen gave her the ridiculous sunglasses and sent her to find her dad, who added a lei and gave her the clue to get to my house.


And she showed up looking like this. :)

I gave her the final clue, which told her that Riley held the key to her future.


Needless to say, when she found this strapped around his collar, she about lost her mind.


And when we told her she walked right by her new car on the way into my condo…


she took off like a shot…


ran to the car…


got inside…


and promptly left us.


Seriously. The stinker just drove off and left us!


But she had the good sense to drive herself right back…


to hug her dad…


and thank her mom…


and give Riley the love he so richly deserved.


And despite the fact that she had called me that morning to declare her excitement over passing the test and getting her license, she didn't have the good sense to bring her purse with her on the treasure hunt, so her dad had to drive her and her new car home.

It was such a great day for me to get to be a part of it and see her face, and I am happy to report she's made it through a whole year of driving in one piece.


Riley's just happy to report that he survived the craziness of the day with {most} of his sanity intact.

Beats a big red bow in the driveway, don't you think?

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