Monday, October 12, 2009

...20 Candles on my Birthday Cake...

This past weekend my parents came into town for my birthday! It was so good to see them. Not only was it nice to get out of the center for a little bit, but we had so much fun exploring London together! On Friday we went for a walk through Hyde Park (my very favorite place), and had lunch at a cafe on the lake. My mom and I shared a pizza and my dad had fish and chips. We just talked and talked and caught each other up on everything going on at home and here. After that we went to Westminster Abbey because I had to go there for a class. The tour guide thought my dad was Chevy Chase...seriously! It was really fun and interesting to walk through the Abbey now that I've been learning about all those people in history. When we got back from the Abbey they went to take a short power nap and I came back to the center to change and get Catherine because we were going to dinner and a show with them. We ended up going to Covent Garden for dinner. We ate at an outdoor cafe that was really good. Then we were off to see The Lion King! I was so excited because I have never seen it and have always wanted to. It did not let me down. I absolutely loved it. The costumes, the music, the characters...all of it was amazing. I was honestly sad when it ended. On our way home my dad decided to try calling Carli and Allie in one of the phone booths. After a couple tries and a few phone numbers we finally got to talk to them. It was a pretty funny ordeal (Cath was highly amused). I had a great first day with them!

On Saturday I was in Stratford-upon-Avon so I didn't get to see them, but I know they had a great time in Stonehenge. However, on Sunday we had another fun day! Cath and I woke up early and went for a morning walk through Hyde Park with my parents. It's always a really nice way to start the day. After that we all parted ways to shower and then met up again for the afternoon. It was so strange that they were constantly going to a hotel and I was going to my "home". Anyways, once the four of us reunited, at my mom's request we went to Portobello road. It was fun to wander down the road, go in and out of shops, and have a couple treats. We definitely got a couple Hummingbird Cupcakes...delicious. Once we felt like we had seen enough we hopped on the tube to go see St. Paul's. That cathedral is always such an incredible sight. I love it. We also walked along Millenial Bridge. My parents loved it, and it was a crystal clear day so you could see all the way down to Tower Bridge. After that Cath headed back to the center and we went to Fortnum & Mason (the first department store ever). I loved it. They had tons of Halloween decorations and candy. I can't wait to go back there at Christmas. When it was close to 3:30pm we made our way to 27 Palace Court. My parents got to join us for Conference Brunch. I am so glad they came. Not only was the food out of the world (thank you JaeLyn), but it was fun for them to see where I live, who my professors are, who my friends are, and just why I love it here so much. I could tell they really loved seeing it too. After eating 10 different dishes including: french toast, quiche, salad, eggs, muffins, fruit, and biscuits we watched the Sunday morning session of conference in the classroom. I loved that I got to sit next to my parents, in London, and watch conference. It was such a perfect scenario. When it ended I was surprised to come downstairs to everyone singing "Happy Birthday" to me! Our final course was homemade cinnamon rolls and cute JaeLyn put a candle on mine. It was a moment that I will never forget. It was another perfect ending to another perfect day!


On Monday it was my 20th birthday! I feel so old now...goodbye to being a teenager. I started the day by going for a quick jog through Hyde Park with my mom and Catherine. Once again, a perfect way to start the day! After that I ate some breakfast and went to my morning Humanities class. Luckily this was the only class I had to go to that day so it wasn't too bad. At 11:30am Cath and I met my parents at their hotel and I opened up some presents. My cute parents are too good to me. They gave me some new clothes, and a Kindle! I was so excited! I also got a necklace from Allie and Wendy, a theatre ticket from my Grandma Pat, and some money from Grandma Bonnie and Grandpa Nate. Carli gave me Grey's season 5, and most surprisingly I got a birthday card straight from Greek Row. Apparently Sam took it upon himself to have people sign it up there for me, so thanks Sam! I loved it! After that we decided to go to Harrod's for lunch. We ate at the Pizzeria. It was delicious. We decided to wander through the store for a while when we were finished. We (me, my mom, and Cath) couldn't resist peeking in Tiffany's for a minute. So many jewels, it's just fabulous! My dad made sure we didn't linger too long and we kept making our way through the store. I ended up getting a fun hat. I'm excited to wear it! When we were ready we said goodbye to Harrod's we headed down the road toward The Office shoe store in search for some boots. I found some! They are perfect for me--leather soles, but bright and colorful everywhere else. With my successful purchase in hand we wandered down to a tube stop and headed back to Palace Court. When we got there we changed and grabbed Abby for a night out on the town. My parents took us to dinner at Zizii (an Italian place just down the street). It was delicious. I had a chicken caesar salad and I  could not have been happier (I've been craving one for days). Cath wrote me the cutest card and gave me a necklace with a crown charm on it. I love it! Abs wrote me a sweet card and gave me a clock necklace from Portobello. I've been wanting one so I was so excited. When we finished dinner we went to see Jersey Boys. It was so so great and so fun! We were singing, dancing, and just having a grand ole time. I want to go back and see it again. When we got back to the center Cath gave me another present...rain boots! She is seriously the best and is too good to me. I had to say goodbye to my parents after this and it was really sad. I had such an incredible time with them this weekend. It was truly magical. I am so happy they got to come to London and see how I'm living my life these days. They are honestly the greatest parents anyone could ask for and I love them so much!

Thanks for a perfect Birthday Mom and Dad!

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