We received a bonus on Christmas Eve from Steve's work. So, after being practical and paying some debt off, and since there was a little money left over, and since Steve rarely gets to have fun with the money he makes, we decided to spend some on an early birthday present for Steve & me and a Christmas present for him.
We told the kids, and they received the news less than cheerfully. I was nervous about leaving them, especially in leaving Michael, but we had several talks and when it all came down to it, I was no more ready to leave on Saturday morning as I had the week before.... but we did, and everything turned out excellently!
Amber called and checked on the kids all weekend. She even prepared dinner and a treat for the kids and asked Josh and Karen to bring it to them when they picked up Aiden on Saturday night. Everyone pitched in and had a good attitude and did what they were supposed to do. Steve & I didn't even get any phone calls!
When we were preparing for the weekend, I was talking to Steve about which room he wanted. He opted for the one with the jetted tub. After seeing our room and knowing that it was less than $20 more than the cheapest room, we wondered why we haven't upgraded sooner!
Here is the room:
It had a sitting room/kitchenette when you first walk in, and solid French doors separated that room from the bedroom.
The bedroom was large and spacious and seriously had the most comfortable bed I've ever slept on! The comforter was a duvet; it was light and full and oh so warm.
One of the best parts? We turned up the heat to 75*. We'd never do that at home, because we don't want a super huge heating bill! But it was WONDERFUL! Especially after staying slightly chilly for the past week of sub 0* weather the week before.
Before we checked into the motel on Saturday, we went to a matinee showing of _The Hobbit_ and ate an early dinner at Cracker Barrel.
The rest of the evening we hung out in the room, soaking in the tub and enjoying each other's company. (did you see that tub?! It was HUGE! It was probably 4'x5'. So nice!)
The motel that we stayed at offers a full breakfast.
Bacon, eggs, yogurt, cereal, waffles, fruit, juice, mini danishes and poppy seed muffins.... so yummy, so filling, so wonderful!
We woke up in time to go down for breakfast before it ended at 10, but I think morning came much too early for Steve.
Steve labeled this picture: "This *is* my happy face!" LOL
After check out, we took the long way home. We drove up the canyon and admired the winter wonderland. Afterward, we drove around the lake.
As we were driving, we saw three enormous birds in a tree. As we got closer, we saw that at least one was a bald eagle. I think the other 2 were just hawks.
We tried to get a picture, but it was on a farmer's land behind a fence; we got as close as we could:
I actually think it might be the same eagle that we saw a few years ago:
How I wish that I would have had a telephoto lens to capture a close up! Ah well.
I also took pictures of the view that I love most :)
As we drove around the lake, I was surprised to see that the ice was thick enough for cattle to walk on! A herd of 5 or 6 were walking around on the ice. I was amazed! There were several inches of snow on the ice too; it had obviously been around a while in these sub 0* temperatures lately.
It was sunset as we arrived at the lake, and the scenery was gorgeous:
As I was photographing the sunset, Steve was too, but he was also photographing me:
He posted those pics on facebook and added the caption: "Beautiful!!! (the scenery is nice too)" It made me feel very loved and happy :)
It all ended with a shoot out:
Then we finished driving around the lake, watching the sun as it finally set on the horizon, and drove on home.
The kids were happy to see us and we were happy to see them.
And they told us that it had been a nice break for them too. :)
Bill said that he had expected some arguing and problems while we were gone. He was happily surprised that everyone got along and did what they should all weekend. He said it was a very quiet weekend.
I am so glad that we ended up going. I was nervous. The kids were nervous. Steve was nervous. Bill was nervous. But it ended up being perfect. It was the best birthday present ever!
And this guy that I'm married to never ceases to amaze me. We've been married for 17 years, and yet he still treats me like his girlfriend. He is sweet and thoughtful and says the nicest things.
Yes, we argue. Not a lot, but some. And I have quite a temper; I've gotten angry. Plenty angry. And so has he.
And life? It is not perfect. In fact, that was one reason for the weekend. After looking out at what we know 2013 has in store, we knew we needed to gear up for it.
But I can honestly say that he is the best thing that has ever happened to me. He is the yin to my yang. He is just similar enough to hold the same basic beliefs, and yet he is just different enough to give balance to our life. He is exactly what I need. And what I want. I am very thankful to have him in my life.
I hope that you enjoyed taking a photo journey with us. And that I didn't wax so romantic that you threw up in your mouth. Not even a little. ;)
See ya later alligator!