Brent made my 32nd birthday awesome. My fam is real low-key about birthdays, to the point that when I get a belated e-card from a sister or parent I feel all warm and fuzzy inside because they didn't forget. That's just how we are. And since we're all like that, no one gets fussed. (Actually, my dad is an exception to this. Knowing that he would be out of the country on my bday he called the night before he left to join Mom and Jarrod & Al in Honduras to say happy birthday, 9 days early.) But Brent is a real ritual-type person (go figure, right?) and birthdays and holidays are a big deal, not to passed over lightly or in silence. So not only was I showered with gifts, things that he either knew that I would like to have although I hadn't thought of wanting them yet (like gardening tools now that I have dirt to scratch around in), or things that I've wanted for a long time, like a bike seat for Clare and a frame for the hammock I bought years ago in Honduras when I visited Al and the kids there...but he also found a babysitter and a great local Italian place that was just right--great food and a nice but not stuffy atmosphere. I think it's been at least a year since we went out for dinner like that. It was so nice to just sit and relax and talk over some wine and good food. I totally splurged and got one of the specials--and lo and behold, it came to the table with half a lobster on top, had no idea what I was getting myself into. I even had one of those cute little seafood forks to eat it with. Special implements! Wow!
But Sunday night apparently the commander-in-chief of our mouse population ordered a surge. We found more droppings in cabinets formerly cleaned and sanitized, a real psychological blow. We're thinking of negotiating terms of surrender; but they'll have to be something we can live with long-term. I'll gladly give them the basement if they'll just stay out of the kitchen.