Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Big Surprise

Last Thursday morning, unbeknownst to my sister, I boarded a plane headed south to the Big Peach.  Later that day, I stuffed myself inside a box and waited outside her house until she came outside to find the surprise her husband had planned for her.  It was epic!  Even after I popped out of the box my sister was still so confused as to what I was doing in her front yard!  Hahaha  I blame it on the pregnancy brain.  (I have a video but unfortunately, when it was sent from my brother-in-law's phone to mine, it got all blurry and scrambled.  And it's also too long to email for some reason, so I apologize but I unfortunately won't be able to share this magical moment with you.)

A little background here:  My sister is currently 36 weeks pregnant, a mom to a 1 year old and 4 old and literally JUST moved into a new house (like a week ago).  To say she has a lot on her plate right now is an understatement.  My brother-in-law knew she was feeling super stressed lately and so a month or two ago he approached me about coming down to surprise her, help her and just generally lift her spirits as only a sister can do!  And dare I say it was a raging success!

I had a few goals for my 5 day visit, number one being to get the crib for the new baby assembled.  Mission accomplished!  I put this crib together with my own two hands.  Credit also goes to my 22 month-old nephew who assisted with his plastic hammer.  Definitely a key factor :)

I also helped her out by watching the kids while she ran around like a nut trying to get things done in the new house!  Hanging out with kids is just what I do, so no arm twisting required there.  Plus, I mean, how can you resist these faces?!?!

The answer to that question is that you can't. 

Bedtime selfie!
We ran a lot of errands while I was in town and it never ceases to amaze me, every time I'm in ATL and out with my sister, the number of 'twin' comments we get.  Literally every sales clerk at every store we were in asked us if we were twins.  A woman in Lowe's actually shouted across the aisle - 'Excuse me.  Excuse me!  Are y'all twins?!'  Hahaha I dk what the fascination is there.  Even more interesting is that SEVERAL of my sisters friends, who she sees on a very frequent basis in her neighborhood or at my niece's school, actually thought I was her, that I had delivered the baby, and returned to my pre-baby body all in the span of less than a week! HAHAHA  Someone actually called her to congratulate her on having the baby and she was like WHAT?!  
This pic is from a visit last year.  We didn't manage to get a pic together this time around.
My sister is a big smoothie fan and during our visit, she introduced me to my new favorite concoction.  It is delicious and super easy and once again, I forgot to take a pic :(  It contains only 3 ingredients:
Coconut/Almond milk blend
1 frozen banana
Generous scoop of Hershey's unsweetened cocoa
Try it! You won't be disappointed.
Oh I also found these cookies, in a gas station of all places down there.  I had heard about these for awhile but never came across them in Baltimore.  Vegan.  Protein.  Chocolate.  All wrapped up in a giant cookie.  SOLD!  Now I just need to find them up here.
While down in Atlanta, I also had to keep up with my half-marathon 'training' (I use that phrase loosely here since this has been the shortest training schedule ever).  With the heat and humidity down there, I honestly wasn't sure how I'd make my last long run happen.  I wanted to get in a double digit run since we are literally less than 2 weeks away from race day (let that sink in).  So far, I've squeezed in multiple long runs (a 10mi, 11mi, 11mi the last 3 weeks) so I've been feeling pretty good about the race, but I wanted one last long run 2 weeks out. 
I decided to run at night, after the sun went down since the daytime temps were about 97 degrees and 75% humidity!  I've visited my sister many many times over the years and knew her old neighborhood well, but I knew zippo about her new one.  In hindsight, setting out alone in the dark in a place where I had zero sense of direction may not have been the best decision but my lord it felt great!  That night I had one of the best double digit runs of this training cycle.  I absolutely loved running by the light of the moon.  I'm a night owl naturally (definitely not an early morning runner) and running in the dark was so peaceful.  I did 10 miles and my legs felt light the entire way.  I honestly felt like I could have run several more miles but it was already after 10pm so I decided to call it a night.  When I arrived back at the homestead I was completely drenched from head to toe.  I don't think I've ever run in humidity like that!
I always have a great time when I visit my sister.  It doesn't matter if the trip is more about business or pleasure, I'm just happy to see her and her fam.  I hope having me around for a few days gave her some sense of peace and lifted the stress she had been feeling lately.  In hindsight, scaring the crap out of a nearly full-term pregnant lady by popping out of a box on her front yard may not have been the smartest plan, but it sure was fun!

What have you been up to the last few days?
Ever surprise a family member in a big way?



  1. This is great! I imagine the video was hilarious, and that your sister loved the help :)


    1. The video was SO funny! I wish I could have shared it here. My brother in law's narration was so silly and I couldn't hear much of it since I was in said box, so watching it back afterward was hilarious!

  2. awww I love surprises! a few years back my sister and I surprised my mom. she thought it was just me coming to visit her in Georgia and i told her my bag was lost by the airline. when we returned to the airport to grab my "missing bag" we retrieved my sister instead. my mom was so shocked.

    your sister must have been so happy to have you!

    1. What a sweet surprise! I love surprising people and I love surprises myself. I think the planning and the anticipation are half the fun of planning big surprises like this too!

  3. Awesome visit, and I love to surprise people by showing up--that said, it is always a good idea to make sure that they aren't busy (because that would SUCK). I've surprised my mom and one of my best friends (whose birthday is today, coincidentally), and it is fantastic every time. Does everyone in your family have the same curly hair? Just curious--as a straight hair girl (but in a family of all sorts of straight hair), curly hair will always be foreign to me. Again, such a great trip and HOLLA fo ATLLLLL

    1. Holla ATL represent!!! I love your southern hometown btw. Always will.
      My little sister's hair is not as curly, just kind of wavy. I believe we inherited our thick lustrous curls from my mom's Italian side of the family. My grandfather had curly dark hair and always told us when we were little that eating the crust of the bread would give us curly hair, so apparently we ate tons of bread crusts through the years. HAHA

  4. Replies
    1. Thank you! I love surprising family and friends. Making them feel special and loved is the BEST!

  5. I love it! Sounds like a wonderful visit.

    1. Thank you! Indeed it was! My sis was so surprised and happy to have me around for a few days :)

  6. It was a great surprise!! I wish the video would have been better quality to post. Thanks again for all your help while you were here! The kids always love having you here too! And we'll be seeing you again real soon!!!