Shannon's birthday was last week and I knew by experience with the kids that I could not plan anything prior to the big day or they would let all the cats out of the bag!
So I woke up the morning of his birthday and made my plan for the day. After breakfast, we were going to get dressed and load up the car. A great birthday gift idea came to mind and that was our first planned stop - Bradley University for a baseball hat. Shannon had mentioned a few months ago that he had never had a Bradley hat and he did not have any red hats, which is his favorite color! Tragedy. Then we would go to Culver's for an ice cream cake, followed by Alwan's for steaks, and Menards if we had time. My route was planned.
Of course the kids took off their listening ears for the morning and it took an hour to get dressed and out the door. I found a cooler to put the groceries in and got the kids strapped in their car seats. 10am and the clock was ticking. I turned the key in the Expedition and nothing. Dead battery. My heart sank. Of all days when I was trying so hard to plan something nice for Shannon. Fighting back tears of disappointment, I called my neighbor to see if she was home. She was helping another friend in need but offered that friend's husband to come give me a jump start! My hero for the day!
Within 30 minutes the kids were strapped back in and we were on our way, hopeful I didn't have any more problems that morning. So many hats to choose from at Bradley, but I think we made a great pick. Off to Culver's. Turtle or Brownie Explosion? After a few minutes, the kids settled on Brownie Explosion, which was a big hit with Shannon. Then to Alwan's for a hotel steak cut into 1/3 thickness and put in a bag to marinate, a few potatoes for the oven, and carrots to steam. Sounded wonderful already!
The kids decided on the way home that they didn't want to put the present in a wrapped box and instead leave it in the bag and hide it on Adam's bed. Shannon got home from work and they were beside themselves with excitement! Sara asked if she could start singing the song she had created. Adam wanted to give him the present right away and came running out of his bedroom with the bag. "Hang on, Adam, go put it back and give Dad a minute!" As soon as Shannon came out of our bedroom, Adam ran up to him empty handed and screamed "Dad we bought you a hat!" Then he turned to get it from his room, pulled it out of the bag, and put is on his head. Shannon got a good laugh out of that.
The steaks turned out awesome, some of the best I've made. And the ice cream cake was a big hit - chocolate ice cream with a chocolate cake base, chocolate drizzle and chocolate candies on top - how can you go wrong?!
Not the greatest picture of everyone but what can you do?
Happy birthday, Dad. Hope we made you feel special on your day. And big thanks to Rick for saving the day with the jump start!