I don’t know about you, but I love surprises! My hubby’s birth mom turned 80 on February 11th. For several weeks, we planned and schemed with his five siblings in the Chicago area and Ohio about a surprise party for Mama Penny.

We flew into Chicago, late on Tuesday the 8th, from California. The next morning we called her and talked for a few minutes and then headed to her house. We let ourselves in and she came around the corner from her bedroom. Kevin said, “Mind some company?”

“What are you doing here? I just talked to you in California!” she said.

We visited with her, Jennifer, one of his sisters, her boyfriend, and his sister’s son. Mom just kept saying how shocked she was. That evening Kevin and I went to Kevin’s sister Virginia’s to finish her birthday surprise party plans.

On the 10th, Kevin’s brother Steve came up from the Pullman district of Chicago and took us to Wells Brothers Pizza in Racine, Wisconsin. Wells Brothers Pizza has been in business hundred-and-one years. Good time, great food, fantastic fellowship.

When we returned to mom’s house where Kevin’s sister Amy surprised mom by flying in from Ohio. Another great reunion. That evening Kevin’s youngest brother Joey came over to Mom’s.

Mom’s birthday, Kev and I went over and spent the day with her while others of the family shopped and decorated for the evening’s event. Our girls called to wish their grandma a happy birthday, and her great-grandbabies sang “Happy Birthday” to her over the phone.

4:30 we received the awaited call. Kevin’s brother-in-law Tim (husband of Virginia, the eldest sister) was having “car trouble” and asked if we could pick him up before heading to their house for birthday dinner.

At the Lilac Cottage in Waukegan, Illinois, were 22 eager loved ones waiting to yell “Surprise!”

What a lovely evening with terrific tributes to a wonderful woman. Love you, Mama Penny.

Saturday, three family members who couldn’t join the party came for a visit. Wonderful reunions all around!

Sunday, another birthday in the family and we all gathered at Tim and Virginia’s to celebrate Penny’s youngest granddaughter Lizzy turning 12.

Time flew by and Amy flew home on Sunday. Monday, we enjoyed our last day with Mama Penny and other family members. Then, (sigh) off to a hotel by Midway Airport for an early morning flight back to our home in California.

A whirlwind trip, to say the least. So much happened in so short a time. Loved every minute. This week of joy will be well remembered.

2 thoughts on “Surprise!

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