I’ve been sneaky lately.

I’ve been plotting, scheming and nearly ruining surprises for over a month. Seriously. I’ve had to lie and cover up and bury email chains and all of these things I am not programmed to do.

My husband had a birthday coming up and I wanted to surprise the heck out of him with a trip back home to see family and friends. I wanted it to be a huge surprise. Not just like “Hey. Look. I made you waffles. Surprise.” but like “SURPRISE!! We’re going on VAYCAY!  OMG, DID YOU JUST PEE YOUR PANTS?!” That’s what I was going for. You know, something subtle.  It worked. I don’t think he peed his pants, but he was definitely in shock. It took a solid thirty minutes before it all set in and he realized he best pack a bag.

So, off to Washington we went!

birthdayweekend-5888blogMy brother-in law picked us up from the airport and helped coordinate a bunch of Pete’s oldest friends to meet us at an Indonesian restaurant. There was a lot of food. This was the only picture I took that night. I was really busy stuffing my face with Nasi Goreng, drinking too much vodka, and reveling in all the merriment. At least I captured the trick candles. This is the third time Pete tried to blow out that cake. Why does that never get old?

birthdayweekend-6075blogThe next day we headed out to Port Angeles to visit Pete’s parents. Once again, I took nearly no photos. I blame this view from their back porch. I was too busy sitting here, drinking tea and eating too much Gouda. There is a large hunk of Gouda in the fridge. My in-laws are Dutch…so, you know… when in Rome (er…Amsterdam?). It’s so hard to capture this view properly, but it’s magic.

photo (1)This is Lake Crescent. We went out here to eat some breakfast. We wanted to come back later and hurl our bodies off of the dock and into the water, but unfortunately, it started to rain just as we were leaving. You win, Washington weather.

birthdayweekend-6068blogWe went to a wedding. This was the sunset. We drank tequila and danced like rap stars to Baby Got Back. My husband is a really enthusiastic dancer and I find myself having to get creative to keep up with him. I love this man.

birthdayweekend-6064blogI couldn’t be bothered to change my lens… so here is us at that wedding REALLY CLOSE UP. Tequila + Dancing = Greasy Bangs. Lesson learned. No one tells you about the whole greasy bangs thing before you get bangs. It’s definitely a thing.

birthdayweekend-6086blogAfter dinner the following day, we took a drive up to Hurricane Ridge. This is another place that can’t be captured properly with photos. It’s vast and beautiful. Lots of mountains. Lots of fresh air.

birthdayweekend-6091blogSee that fog creeping in over that mountain? We had to drive through a whole mess of that to get up here. It was spooky.



birthdayweekend-6104blogA deer being a jerk-face. Pete managed to capture this one. He claims it’s his favorite photo he has ever taken. I get it. We both like sassy animals.

birthdayweekend-6085blogSpeaking of sassy animals (what?! weird transition)…this  is my father-in-law, or “Pop” as we call him. He spells it “Pap” in all of his cards and letters. Still, we pronounce it “Pop” like “Popcorn”. To be clear, we don’t call him “Popcorn”. However, sometimes at Christmas we DO call him “Papa Noel”. This went a bit off the rails, didn’t it? He’s just sittin’, taking in that view. We like views.

birthdayweekend-6112blogThis pretty lady is my mother-in law. Pannekoeken whisperer, passionate fast walker, and all around wonderful woman. Do you see those mountains back there? Jeez. No big deal. Why do people live here? 😉

birthdayweekend-6125blogWe have one of these pictures from nearly all of our trips to Washington. It’s a tradition.

I kind of wish I had taken more photos, but really, it was so nice to just relax and take it all in. Operation Birthday Surprise was a total success!  I’m super glad that I can stop sneakily directing emails into a totally inconspicuous email folder titled “THUNDERCATS”.  Phew!

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