california, the morning surprise

I went to California a week and a half ago for just 3 days, to celebrate my dad’s 60th birthday and Father’s Day. It was a surprise for Dad. He knew that Christina and Mina were coming to his house to stay and visit for a few weeks, but he had no idea I was flying in from MI and Aria was driving up from southern CA, so that we could all be there together.

It was heaven for 3 days.

First of all, Dad was totally surprised, which is amazing, since all of us girls kept slipping and mentioning “when we’re all there in June” right in front of him. We’ve been planning this for months (Bethany came up with the idea) and we’re terrible at keeping secrets. But it worked. I flew in late Wednesday night and Aria drove in the same day. We had to keep our presence a secret from Dad, even though we were staying at his house that night. Then Thursday morning we surprised him by waking up before him (we were up at 4:45 am), getting donuts (gain, Beth is awesome) and being all together downstairs waiting for him in the front room when he came down to go for his normal morning walk at 5 am. But it was nuts orchestrating it all. Beth had the hardest time finding a donut shop open at 4:45 am and found herself yelling at a gas station attendant, “But I just need some donuts!” at 5 am …. kind of embarrassing. Then Aria had to wake up all three of her kids and haul them over to Dad’s house at 5 in the morning …. then Dad decided, for once, to not go on his morning walk and to sleep in. So all of us girls were sitting in the front room, drooling over donuts (Mina ate some) and almost falling asleep waiting, until finally we called mom’s phone from downstairs to upstairs in their room and got him up. Here are the pictures from the morning. Every single one of these shots makes me want to cry and laugh out loud at the same time.

Killing time before Dad woke up:



Then he woke up :) ….



This picture, with Mom absolutely giddy and clutching her hands is my hands down favorite, of the whole weekend. It just describes, in one picture, what we all felt being around each other. Sheer joy. Mommy is so cute. 

And the scene. ahhhhhh. This is just beautiful. Donuts. Family. Does it get better than this?

2 thoughts on “california, the morning surprise

  1. Wait… Aria has three kids? I need names and ages. And yes, that picture with your mom is SO cute. And descriptive. I’m so glad you were able to go. Happy 60th Anthony!

  2. These pics just made me cry missing my own sisters. You and I would totally be friends if we didn’t live in different states. Liz tells me so all the time, but when I saw the donuts I knew it was true.

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