Monday, February 05, 2007

Happy Birthday, Al!

Almost Twelve years ago (I am horrified to even type such a large number.........12, really?) I was standing in the middle of the ACU Campus Center with my mom searching for my potluck roommate for Freshman year. I quickly spotted a girl wearing an identical outfit to mine standing with her mother and I realized that this was the mysterious Alison who was my assigned roommate. That potluck roomate ended up being my roomie for all four years of college and I am sure one day we will convince the husbands to move into the same retirement community so we can once again be reuninted as roomies. She has seen me through finals, pledging, stress, joy, grief, a wedding, the birth of my first child (she brought me Jason's Deli to eat the moment I popped that baby out), and the trials of motherhood. Yesterday was her 30th birthday. In honor of Alison and of the four years that we lived together, I feel the need to reflect back on her four birthday celebrations in college.

Freshman Year: Living in West Texas meant unpredictable weather and during our Freshman year a slight snow storm hit the weekend of Alison's birthday, preventing her from returning home to her parents to celebrate. Feeling the need to cheer up Alison, I decided that we (myself and some fellow Gardner Hall residents) were going to take Alison out for dinner, ice or no ice. The five of us loaded up in my Honda Accord, somehow searing the floorboard carpet with Alison's electric ice scraper in the process, and headed out to Long John Silvers. LJS!!! For some reason that neither Alison nor I can remember, she chose to eat at Long John Silvers for her nineteenth birthday. For those ACU readers, remember when there was a Long John Silver's close to campus (we think on Ambler)? It closed shortly after this birthday celebration.

Sophomore Year: By this time we were in club, which meant Sing Song (didn't attend a private Church of Christ school and have no idea as to what I am refering to here? I guess google it because it is too complicated and such a weird entity to attempt to explain.) and extended practice sessions were always going on during Alison's birthday. This did not hender any birthday celebrations. Leigh Ann had entered the picture by this point (future 1017 roomie) and we decided to throw Alison a suprise party. Alison was already dating Greg at this time, so he helped us with the planning. For some reason we thought it would be a great idea to invite about 30+ people to this party that was being held in Alison and my efficency apartment at University Park (approx 400 sq feet). This is when the infamous boob cake made its first appearance (a McKay's Bakery special.....oh how I miss McKays). The pictures from this party are hilarious because some random people ended up coming to the party and at one point we were on the radio station (103.7 and Trace Michaels). Oh yeah, we also had shoe polished Alison's car the night, that didn't go over too well. Sorry about that, Al!

Junior Year: Again, Leigh Ann and I felt the need to throw a suprise party for Alison. This time we became much more creative and mailed out fliers with her picture on it inviting everyone to her party at 1017 Washington Blvd. Knowing that she was going to be absent from chapel the day the flyers went out, Leigh Ann and I giggled constantly as we watched people open their bright green invites with Alison's face printed on it. I don't recall as many details from this party, likely because it was Sing Song time and my Junior year I took about 372 hours both sememsters, but fun was had by all. I do remember that Tobe brough Alison a mop (our "family" had grown quite a bit by this time and our house was often full of fun people--how did we even manage to graduate with high honors, girls?) because they called each other "sop" at the time. Fun times.

Senior Year: This was the best surprise party ever, because we had it on a random Sunday night WEEKS after Alison's real birthday. It took Alison a good ten minutes after entering the party to even register it was her birthday party. I believe one of the main reasons we planned this party was for me to apologize for busting Alison's lip the weekend during a Sing Song celebration (that Minnie Mouse costume will never be the same).

Saturday Night 2007: This year I was only a participant in the suprise party and not the facilitator. There were no lime green invitations nor did anyone attempt to decorate Alison's car with balloons and streamers. Refreshments were not served on an octagon-shaped table from the 80's and no one had to walk the plank. Rather, six couples dined in a refined manner at PF Changs in downtown Fort Worth. Alison was quite shocked to see us all there waiting to celebrate her 30th year, although I think she was slightly disappointed to see the Great Wall of Chocolate cake and not the boob cake when it came time to blow out the candles.

Happy Birthday, Alison!

(The blogger tool bar is not working--which means Spell Check is not working! Aargh! Please ignore my feeble atttempts at correct spelling!)


Alison said...

Thanks, Lynley, for this trip down memory lane! You guys were always so sweet and thoughtful in your surprise parties. Although, I'm pretty sure most of them involved me being embarrassed in some manner! Speaking of embarrassed, please tell your readers that I was not drinking on Saturday night (as my picture would otherwise imply!)

Thanks again for such a lovely Shmu tribute!

Alison said...

BTW- I just updated my blog. I know, it's a miracle!

Kelli said...

It sounds like Alison will never be able to say she never had a surprise birthday party when she's in the retirement home with you.