I am just thrilled. Expect nothing and you'll likely be pleased beyond measure.
My birthday is Sunday. I try to ignore the approach of my birthday and treat that day like any other. Having expectations about my birthday in the past have led to some very bad birthday experiences, so I refuse anymore to allow myself to expect anything at all from anyone. Usually, my mom and sister (and now niece) and I go out to eat and shop a bit (my mother insists she buys me the clothes I pick out) and that's usually about it. But this year I caught hints of my mother and my husband scheming behind my back. "Whatcha up to?" I'd ask. "None of your business!" he would reply. Then on Wednesday he came home with a huge box in the front seat of his pickup truck. My mother bought me a brand-new color laserjet printer. The old one, we'd had it for about a decade, had finally printed it's last novel draft this last winter and died with me cussing it till its last pathetic breath. Since then I've had to email every doc I've needed printed, so my husband could print them off at his office and bring them home to me in the evening.
So praises to my mother, the best Mom on earth!
Then last night, after our LifeGroup get-together, my husband took me to Carino's for Italian nachos and tiramisu. Junk food city! After that, he said, "I gotta run over here for something." Yeah, that's vague. But he's often vague, so I didn't question him, just rattled on about whatever we'd been discussing. Next thing I know we're at the bookstore. He says, "Go to the magazine aisle and don't look over the shelf. Stay there." I give him the "I know what you're up to" look. But I don't want to mess up his scheming, so I hide in the magazine aisle, ignoring covers of sexy half-dressed men and women and try to find a magazine of genre fiction. (Sadly, there is only one, the new Analog, which I don't read b/c it's only Sci-Fi, but I bought it anyway b/c I can't leave a bookstore empty-handed.) A little while later James comes back and says, "They didn't have what I needed. Let's go." We paid for the copy of Analog I'm likely to never read, then went to the truck. In my seat was a bag tucked around two items. I had to laugh. My husband found what he came for, paid out, ran to the truck, then ran back inside to get me, and I was so involved in looking for a fantasy fic magazine that I missed it all. He's so sneaky, and so sweet.
So what was in the bag? Why, George was in the bag. Not the curious monkey. My favorite author, rather. The Ice and Fire guy. I guess it was three posts ago that I worried that I'd not get back to a bookstore to buy that particular calendar until too late. Well, that calendar was in the bag. Strange to be excited over a calendar, I know, but the art of Westeros's castles is outstanding! I'm gonna frame the suckers when 2012 rolls around and hang them up in my writing room for inspiration. The other item was "Warriors," the collection of stories edited by GRRM and Gardner Dozois. I had been eyeing that too, last time I stopped in. Started the first story when we got home. Late, it was, and I fell asleep dreaming of vikings.