I've been friends with Carla since we were giggling elementary pre-teens. We both grew up in the Dallas area, and our smaller girl scout troops merged into a large troop, and we've been partners in crime since the merger. I'd need a separate blog to document the years of friendship, and amnesty before I could share some of our adventures, but....we've had quite a few. Her Mom moved the family to Austin when we were sophomores in high school, and somehow-despite the lack of internet, void of free long distance phone services, or texting plans-we kept up with each other, grew closer still, got together, and made memories along the way. Six years ago (before I blogged), I hosted a bridal shower for her, and stood next to her as the Maid of Honor at her wedding. A year later, I hosted a baby shower in anticipation of John Ross entering the family circle (pictures, lost forever, though she claims to have a few on her computer). I've traveled down I-35 for baptisms, birthday parties, and 'just becauses.' Alexis is now on her way, and she needed a welcome from the gal that plans to add her to the 'kids to spoil' list. The list is getting long!
I chose to host the shower in Austin because that's her home base now, despite my best efforts to get them to come 'back' to Dallas. Carla and Chris have an amazing back yard, and since we were going with BBQ, that's where we headed. Even though the party was FOR the family, I know it's hard to have a party at your house, especially lugging around a belly full of baby, but they threw themselves into helping get the house, and yard ready while I pulled together the decorations, and food. Chris agreed, more than willingly, to grill the meat because I can't be trusted to grill meat. I like it dead, very, very dead. Someday I'll learn how to do this correctly, Saturday was not the day. This meant he was manning the grill while the guest were socializing, though I know they kept him company, it did carve a big chunk out of his time, and he never complained.
In fact, he never complained about any of the 6,543 things Carla, myself, and her pal Gretchen (who flew in from Omaha) asked of him, lots of which we didn't actually ever have to ask, he just did it. He may never let me come back, but I sure appreciated his help.
John Ross was a little bit shy with the stranger who only shows up a few times a year on special occasions. He did identify that I drive a Chevy, and I think this moved me up a notch in his book, he is apparently a fan of the Chevy, and gives lectures to people who drive cars from other continents. He is a smarty, and he kept me entertained.
The extended family came out, along with new (to me) friends from work and play. I love Carla's Mom, and Aunt...always have, always will. They are fun ladies. I can't wait to see Alexis added to the ranks of these strong women.
After hours of talking, eating...
...and present opening...
...a few presents caused some disturbing reactions. I think John Ross has been indoctrinated into the UT way of life because he knew when the gifts he helped unwrap aligned with his father's alma mater, and things like THIS started happening.
...and then there was more eating, and talking. Gretchen, Carla, and I stayed up later talking girl talk, but then something scary happened when I finally headed to bed. Carla and Chris willingly let me stay the night before heading home (Alexis' first slumber party), but....I should have known there would be a catch. Their laughter from the nursery (turned guest room for the evening) should have told me to be afraid....very afraid.
UT?!?!?! They assured me there were no other options. I wanted to steal John Ross' Car comforter, but Gretchen had already claimed it. I don't know what's going to happen to me now. Will Baylor take away my diploma? I'm pretty sure I'm coming down with a rash. And so, this comes full circle. I met Carla in Girl Scouts, their motto was to 'always be prepared' and I forgot the first rule of survival. Next time, I'll be bringing my own bedding. It will be green and gold.
Toffee Pecan Pie Bars
5 days ago