Friendship is not just the name of an ordinary feeling. It is the name of the feelings of understanding, honesty and frankness between special people. These feelings keep the very special people bound together and such a friendship lies in the three of us.
Wow. What a weekend. I have been looking forward to writing this blog post but also dreading it for fear that I would inadequately describe how wonderful it was. About 6 weeks ago, Mary Beth told me that she'd bought a plane ticket to come see me! I was really excited and looked forward to it. Along the way, I'd made comments to Melissa that she should come too, but she always said that it just wouldn't work out, blah, blah, blah (she's a liar!!!!!!) LOL
She even told me that MB had thought about surprising me, but she felt that I might not appreciate that b/c I'd want my house to be clean, etc. A surprise would have been fun, but yes, I would have wanted to be prepared. However, I kept thinking that if they just added Melissa into the mix, I would still be prepared. I questioned her. I questioned Chris. Everyone said that no, she wasn't coming. I wanted her to come but was of course really excited that MB was coming. I was prepared to have a blast with her!
I went to the airport Friday morning, prepared to meet MB in baggage. Along the way, I thought about calling Melissa, but I didn't for 2 reasons. 1.) I didn't want to rub it in her face that MB was going to be here and she wasn't. 2.) If she answered the phone at her house, I'd be disappointed with the confirmation that she really wasn't coming. I prayed to God that if He saw fit to bless me with her coming too that it would be great. I admit, I didn't really think it would happen though.
Once I got there, I decided to go upstairs in the airport and sit near where she would come out of the security area. I sat where I was kind of hidden behind a bush. I thought it would be neat to see her first and kinda jump out, maybe snapping a picture as I did. I sat & sat, watching people walk by. Every now & then, I would lean forward to peer around the bush to see if I saw her coming. While I waited, I texted with Cindy.
All of a sudden, I saw her! Yea! I leaned forward a bit and raised my phone to take a picture, thinking that it probably wasn't going to be a great picture. I'm not really sure exactly what happened...it all happened so quickly...but I think she turned her head as if she was talking to someone and I looked to see what she was looking at, and there was Melissa!!!!!!!! Aaaahhhh! I screamed & ran to them and hugged them! So fun! I asked them, "Did Chris know?" They said, no b/c they didn't trust him! LOL I then asked, "Did Cindy know?" They said no. Wow...they're good secret keepers!
We got a stranger to take a picture of us before we even went to get the luggage. It was so exciting, and I feel so blessed that they love me enough to even want to come see me, to make it such a fun surprise was so great! 2 of my very best girlfriends who love me unconditionally & despite so many things!
So....here we go! I texted a picture to Chris & Cindy. Of course, they were both really surprised! We made plans to meet Cindy for lunch and then go by her house. I was still kind of in shock that they were both here, and we kept talking about all that led up to them both being here! I'd made plans for MB & I to go to lunch somewhere, but plans changed and we headed to meet Cindy near her house. We went to Newk's, a nice little deli place. The 3 of us hadn't eaten anything all day, so we went ahead & ate while waiting for Cindy, who'd had to rush to get there. She was so excited that I was getting to spend time with both of them and that she would get to be with them as well. She's gotten to know them through me, and through a Facebook relationship, and we all have plans to go on a big trip together next year, so this was like a preview for us!
After we ate, we went to her house so they could see where she lived, then we headed back to Katy and shopped around a little bit, making a stop at Starbucks before MB, M, & I got really great pedicures!
By this point, Chris was texting me, saying that the girls were about to die b/c they wanted to see Mary Beth, whom they love! He was still keeping Melissa a surprise from them. So, after the pediure, we headed home. Cindy had to leave for a family event. MB & I walked in the house where she got her hugs from them (well, Ellie was unsure b/c of the excitement of the other girls & MB). Then, MB told them she'd brought them a surprise, and we opened the front door where Melissa was walking up the sidewalk! Yea! Of course, I think the girls were probably hoping MB & M's children were also part of the surpise (LOL) but they love Melissa too, so it was a fun surprise! Ellie didn't take too long to warm up.
We made homemade pizzas for dinner and then went to Ooh La La for dessert. It was such a nice night (except for the mosquitos) so we ate outside at home. MB, M, & I went to the movies afterwards.
Katie & MB have always had a very special relationship, so Katie enjoyed playing basketball with her.
Ellie enjoyed having Melissa push her in her swing.
I love the look on Melissa's face. (Click on it to make it bigger.)
Katie loves her Mary Beth!
After Ooh La La, we went to the movies while Chris took the girls home. He was so amazing all weekend, taking care of the girls pretty much the whole time so I could enjoy my time with my friends and not have to worry about anything at home.
We headed down to "The Heights," a part of Houston I'd never spent much time in. It's a neat little area, full of funky stores, antique stores, etc. We ate a little bit at a neat place called, "Shade." The weather was very nice, so we were able to sit outside on their patio. The weather really was such a blessing this weekend!
At some point, Cindy got a little dramatic! LOL
Mary Beth & I shared this this pasta & shrimp dish. Those shrimp were amazing!
After dinner, since we thought we hadn't eaten enough already (ha), we headed over to 'The Chocolate Bar.' One thing about Houston: we have LOTS of good places to eat!
After Bible Class & church, we went to Pappasito's for brunch/lunch. MB & M decided to share an entree that included filet & garlic shrimp. Unfortunately, the cooks decided to add some habanero peppers to their shrimp, making it basically unedible. After talking to the manager, just to inform him that something seemed wrong, he sheepishly admitted that the orange things Melissa pulled out were habaneros and he didn't know why they had been added. Their $19.95 entree was given to them for free! I hate that their experience wasn't that good b/c we love that place! Poor things, their mouths were on fire!
We went home, intending to go back out shopping. We all 3 laid down on the bed and almost went to sleep. Finally, we were all able to get each other up. We headed out to Sugar Land Town Square, not too far from here. It is a cute area but had mainly restaurants we decided. It was a nice day for walking around though....and we found a Ben & Jerry's for a little snack! :)
We then went to Starbucks with Ellie and enjoyed sitting outside on the patio, using the coffee to help warm us up...it was chilly!
It was really sweet..there was an older lady inside the Starbucks, and she & Ellie had a silent conversation through the window. The lady would put up her hand and Ellie would put up her hand, too. It was very sweet and made me think of my own grandmothers.
After Starbucks, we went to Mardel, a great Christian bookstore here in town and made a quick stop at Garden Ridge. We then met Cindy for their last Houston meal....until next time of course. MB had eaten at 'Taste of Texas' the last time she came, and M was interested in going, so we did!
In our defense, Cindy got soup & salad, while MB, M, & I shared a steak. That makes me feel a BIT better about eating yet again!
One of the things I love about these friends is that all of them love God & desire to please Him! One of the things I love about Cindy is the depth of her spirituality and her prayers. Here, you can see that her prayer before we ate brought tears to her own eyes & MB's eyes. I didn't get a picture of my own eyes & Melissa's, but I'm quite sure you would have seen tears there as well. She prayed a prayer of thanksgiving that Melissa & I had a friendship then Mary Beth & I had a friendship which joined her & Melissa as well. Then, Cindy & I had a friendship which has now joined her to them. God works in such good ways & has good plans for us all!
After enjoying a nice lunch, we parted ways with Cindy and headed to the airport (after a quick stop for me at Target). I dropped them at the door which is always a sad thing to do. I hated to see them go, but life is the way it is. I am so thankful that God has helped Mary Beth & I and Melissa & I to sustain our friendship over the miles & through the years. I'm so thankful for Mary Beth & I meeting at the school when Hunter & Gracie were in Kindergarten and Melissa & I meeting at church and Cindy & I meeting at church here and forming a friendship. I'm thankful they all get along so well! I look forward to many more fun times together!