We ran away from home. Well, actually it was a little weekend escape to Hot-lanta which really wasn't very hot at all temperature-wise. Somehow shopping always seems more appealing in the big city, and for contending with the crowds, parking and everything else that goes with being in a mall this time of year we can reward ourselves with a nice dinner at a restaurant found only in a metropolitan area. Birthday presents were the priority but we did make a sizable dent in Christmas as well. There could have been a stop at a scrapbook store too...just saying.
And here's the birthday girl we stopped in to spend the afternoon with on the way home. Seventeen...I don't know how that happened but there doesn't seem to be a way to stop it so I just shake my head in amazement at how fast the years have flown by. And what a delightful young lady she is. We talked boyfriends, SAT tests and cake decorating over dinner at the restaurant of her choosing which this year was Carrabba's. Why cake decorating? Because she had to demonstrate her prowess with a pastry bag as part of her Health and Wellness class. Where was something fun like that when I was in Home Ec? We made Egg Salad Boats. And she readily admits that very little of the food she's learned to prepare falls under the heading of "healthy."
One of the birthday traditions is for me to ask her a series of questions and it's fun to see how her answers have changed over the years...or not. The favorite color has gone from pink to blue to orange and now seafoam green but she's been almost unwavering since about age 6 in picking steak as her favorite food. And she's far less certain about what she wants to be when she grows up now that she's nearing the time to make that choice. I keep assuring her that's OK. I like gaining this little bit of insight into how the last year has affected who she is and she must like the tradition too because some years she'll remind me that I need to ask her the "birthday questions."
The black Vans she's holding in the photo above were part of her birthday present from us and I had to laugh when I saw them on the list as I think there's a tradition there as well. I can remember us having to hunt down Vans for her dad when he was about the same age. And if I'm not mistaken, he took a black pen to his white Vans for a customized design. Maybe we should have gotten Kayla a white pair too so he could continue that part of the tradition for her.
At any rate, we had a nice little escape and a fun time celebrating Kayla's birthday with her. And this week we'll have to get serious about Christmas...I can't put it off any longer.