As far as I knew, the DH and I were going to have dinner with my parents on Saturday at an all-you-can-eat Chinese food buffet to celebrate Mom's birthday, Father's Day and my birthday since my folks were running off to the Mediterranean for a cruise that would have them out of town for the last two occasions.

It was going to be a low-key event, which is what I really needed after that wild trip to NYC and a week chock-full of work, events and other stuff. I even had my fat jeans on and everything.
So the day started out fine with a trip across the city and lunch with Lara and Michelle before our Toronto Romance Writer's meeting. After the meeting Michelle gave me a ride home. As we drove into the sunny west, she asked me what I'd be doing that evening.

"Just out with my folks. I hope it doesn't go too late, I'm beat," were my famous last words.
Little did I know that my father had arranged a birthday ambush at the neighbourhood Mandarin restaurant. The four of us were escorted to our table and, as we entered a room near the back I wondered where the heck our table was, because all the tables around us were full and there were only a few empty chairs scattered in a corner, next to a very large party.
Oh great, I thought, we're gonna have to sit right next to the rowdy bunch. And that's when it hit me that everyone looked real familiar...

Okay, the shouts and waves might have tipped me off. Just a little. ;)

Friends and oodles of family (even my Grandma and Aunt Rita from Picton and Bath) made the drive to pig out on the all-you-can-eat birthday-buffet madness. Joanne gave me these fabulous sunglasses so that I could celebrate discreetly and my new name tag.

And just when I thought it was safe, we went back to Aunt Susan and Uncle Bob's place (yes, Bob really is my uncle) for a very cool cake (despite the meringue mushrooms -- which inspired some to think the cake was "special").

No, what was special, or specially embarrassing, was the photo demonstration in which my loving father had assembled as many authentic "Life of Bonnie" photos for all to enjoy...or heckle.

Oh, and here's the photo from the front of the party invitation (I miss the 80s, don't you?):

The fact that my loving husband kept quiet about this for all this time totally impressed me. I thought I was the sneaky one in this relationship. ;)

How everyone got this to happen without anyone letting the cat out of the bag, including my NYC travel companion Michelle, who I had also spent most of Saturday afternoon with, makes me even more nervous about the day we're all going ziplining -- the birthday celebration I know about. They could have the Hoff making a cameo appearance at the other end or something.

The evening was FABULOUS and, despite the Kodak moments I'd have much rather kept in a sealed bin in my parent's attic, it made me realize how damn lucky I am -- even though people sometimes call me ma'am. The idiots. ;)