Her (formerly) good friends Julia, Amelia, and Talisha helped me pull off the big surprise. The only real potential slip-up was my cleaning the house 2 days in a row. I came up with a logical explanation which for once she bought. My parents are coming out for Thanksgiving next week and I told her that I wanted to go the extra mile for her on her birthday so she wouldn't have to clean as much over the weekend. Julia and Amelia had already purchased all the decorations and Talisha had taken care of the food for the party. My biggest challenge was finding a legitimate reason for coming back to the house. So, here's what I did:
I dropped the kids off at Julia's house before Lori and I left for a date. I intentionally "forgot" my phone at home and then made a big production out of locking the door from the house to the garage, which normally I never do. I made sure that Lori watched me do it. So, we dropped the kids off at Julia's and ran over to do some Christmas shopping per Lori's request. Forget those romantic dates...gotta get that shopping done. Meanwhile, I had given Julia our garage code and the girls got inside to decorate and set up the food. At sporadic instances throughout the even, I made comments about how I couldn't believe I had left my phone on the desk. After we took advantage of some good deals, we went over to Olive Garden for dinner. I had told Lori that I really wanted to see the new Bond movie, Quantam Solace. So, I asked the waitress if we could get our food ASAP because of the movie start time. They did a wonderful job of getting our food right out. I had asked Julia to call Lori's cell phone at 6:30 asking to take the kids over to our house due to a meeting Dave was having. Julia pulled it off perfectly. Lori, remembering that I had locked the house door apologized to Julia for not being able to just give her the garage code and told her that we would have to meet them somewhere to give her our house keys. I knew that's what she would do. So, I piped in that I would like to pick up my cell phone anyway. And, that did it. Lori had absolutely no clue. So, we got to the house and Julia was sitting in the Suburban with all the kids inside. Lori did notice that someone had switched the outdoor light off. She kept on saying what happened to that light? I know it was on. I made up some excuse to get something out of the trunk and told Lori to unlock the door for Julia. Well, someone had unlocked the door, too. And just as Lori put the key in she said, "Hey! This door's unlocked!" She opened the door, the lights went on, and everyone yelled "Surprise!" She was shocked! Oh, it was awesome.
We had a blast! So many of our friends showed up for the party. I'm not going to comment on all the pictures below, but let me just say our house was packed. It was the best party I've been to. Thanks to Talisha, Julia, and Amelia for helping me pull this off. Lori did admit it was a happy birthday. That's all I wanted.
I'm not sure who these guys are, but they ate all the food. The middle guy kept on giving that creepy smile.
Josh and Amelia, great friends of ours. Josh was worried that with Lori being pregnant and all she wouldn't have the emotional stability required for a 40th birthday party. He kept on telling Amelia to take it easy on Lori.
And, a fun time was had by all.