1) kick me really hard in the shins

2) tell me a very sad story

3) invite me to your wedding (I cry at weddings)

4) force me to watch “The Green Mile”

5) Give me an amazing, generous and sooooo exciting early birthday present.  OMG!!!!!  Wait until you see what happened today!!!!

But first….day’s recap.   We’re in Victoria visiting my parents.  Neva thought she was coming with us.  Not today Neva!  (Thank you “Auntie Anna”!)

It was a beautiful morning, but not so beautiful at the ferry terminal this morning.  There was all kinds of kerfuffles and problems, resulting in us missing one ferry and having to wait an hour until the next sailing and listening to all kinds of “darkness” from angry people around us (I heard the f-bomb  A LOT).  Here was one “small angry mob”.

There were also a couple of car breakdowns, which caused a bit of a traffic problem.  (Luckily, BC ferries have a “roaming” mechanic that helps out if needed.  He seemed to be really busy this morning)

However, we took the hoopla in stride, got some breakfast while we were waiting (and english muffin with an egg, ham, a piece of cheese and a piece of hash brown)….

I took a photo of a whale….

And we eventually got on the ferry.

We may have been unlucky in loading on time, but we WERE lucky once we were on, and got one of the spots RIGHT by an open air window on the car deck.  This was the view from the comfort of our car (we chose not to go to the upper deck with the angry masses)

Here are a few pictures from the sailing.  First one, can you spot the bird AND the seal?? (there must have been a ton of fish to feed on today, because we saw about 10 seals at one time)

Can you spot me in the next one???

Nothing to point out in the next few, just pretty shots….

My mom had lunch ready for us when we got home, it was quiche (yum) and salads.

Then my Mom and I ventured downtown to do a bit of thrift shopping, and check out the Chalk Art Festival.  Here are Mom and I making shadow art.  Who needs chalk? :)

And a couple of other shots taken downtown…

Here are some photos of the chalk art festival.  Good thing the sun was shining!!!  And how sad that these will be washed away when the rain comes.  However, for now, they were spectacular!

There were musicians and singers in the area…

My attempt at art….using a line of humans in shadow.

And these roaming “jaunty dressers” who seemed genuinely surprised when I asked if I could take their picture.  Hmm…maybe these is their normal Saturday outfits, and balloons are carried every day.  Dunno, but they enjoyed the attention.

On the way home, my Mom and I stopped at our favorite “honor box” hobby farm and bought some plums and cherry tomatoes.  Many of the tomatoes didn’t make it home…we ate them.  They’re like candy!!

Then, we had a little early birthday celebration.  My birthday is a couple of weeks away, but I won’t see my parents on the day, so they surprised me.  We had little cupcakes….

And a big orange box to match.

I thought when my Dad gave it to me that it was a new blender, because my Mom had been asking about the sad broken blender that died earlier this week.  Turns out, it was as far from blender as could be.  The big box had a smaller box in it, and that smaller box had another box in it….that contained THIS!!!!!

And THAT is when I burst into tears.  My parent’s generosity really touched me.  OMG….it’s AWESOME!!!  A new Canon Rebel T3.  OMG, OMG, OMG!!!!!  I am SOOOOOO lucky.  OMG, OMG, OMG!!!!!

Thank you Mom and Dad!!!!!  OMG, OMG, OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We went out for dinner while the Rebel’s battery charged.  The photos below are still from my Canon Powershot, which will of course continue to be toted around with me for point and shooting.  These are my parents looking cute.

And the four of us….

We started out with white wine, hummus and pita.

My dinner was chicken fajitas.  They were sizzling.

Word got around that a birthday was being celebrated and the restaurant brought me tiramisu.  Thankfully, they also brought 4 forks, so we shared.

It was awful as you can see.  NOT….

This is our new friend Christine.  She has been our server many times, she too had a birthday this week, so we birthday girls had a celebratory photo.  We’ll be seeing Christine again I’m sure!!!!

The sunset sky on the way home was lovely….

And the sun is setting on this post.  The Rebel’s battery is now fully charged, so I’m off to madly click and photograph everything in sight.  FUN!!!!!!  Hope all of your weekends are bringing good surprises and beautiful sunsets too!!!!  (and cake!)