family, fun and a 50th

my three kids / elizabethcraneswartz.comI've been keeping a secret FOREVER and it's just about killed me. we threw a surprise dinner for my parents' 50th wedding anniversary this weekend and it's been torture trying not to ruin the surprise. they thought they were having dinner with me, Bob and my three kids (ALL MY PEOPLE WERE HOME THIS WEEKEND!!!) but what they didn't know is that my sister and her whole family, my brother and two of my mom's sisters were all coming into town, too.

do you know how hard it is to not casually mention surprise-y things in conversation that will give it all away? for me it's like the idea of maybe saying something paralyzes me and then my mouth goes haywire. a better example is like when you play hide-and-seek and as soon as you find a good hiding spot, you have to pee even though you just went before you started the game but the idea that you CAN'T pee makes you have to. do you know I actually emailed my parents the details for dinner to avoid calling them? they probably thought I'm a jerk. my mom called me on friday morning and I had to sit in my car for 30 minutes talking and pretending I was on my way to CT to pick up the girls (my sister kindly picked them up on her way up from PA). on saturday I had to call my parents again to find out where they were so my two aunts could enjoy boston for the day without worrying about bumping into them. I NEVER talk to my mom two days in a row so it was pretty suspicious but it all worked out.

my girls / elizabethcraneswartz.comthis will mark the second successful surprise pulled off in two weeks. for abby's 16th birthday I made pancakes the day before, drove to CT for an all day company meeting, stayed in a hotel near her school, got up at the ass-crack-of-dawn and surprised her with birthday pancakes in bed. she had no idea and was totally shocked to see me. I LOVE THAT! but... I barely talked to her for a few days and had to stay off social media all night wednesday because I worried she would see some kind of geotag that would give away my hiding spot.

anyhoo - in the spirit of living in the moment and enjoying the ones you're with, I have zero pictures of my family all dressed up. I have a sketchy/dark video of the "SURPRISE!" but none of my parents that night. I do have some group shots from sunday brunch at my house but I need to get them from my brother. this just proves the point that sometimes, you have to get pushy about taking pictures and making sure to preserve the memories.