the birthday that was

had a wonderful birthday yesterday. i slept in, and jeannie and the kids woke me up by singing happy birthday loudly from outside the bedroom. i couldn’t figure out why there were singing from outside the closed door; but they kept singing, more and more loudly and badly. turns out, they’d created a streamer woven barrier across the door opening, that i had to crash through (victory!). coffee was placed in my hand, and max gave me his gift: an extremely generous handmade coupon book filled with coupons for things like movies with him, meals with him, and other stuff (all at his expense). the kid has a wonderful combination of being good at saving money, and generous at giving it away.

then we got ready for the day, and hit the road. we went to my favorite breakfast place in san diego: kono’s. there might be fancier and tastier breakfasts in terms of the food; but kono’s is just the best all-around breakfast experience – a tiny little cash-only join in pacific beach (right at the base of crystal pier). their breakfast burritos are stunningly good, and their outside patio seating hanging over the beach (there were tons of surfers to watch yesterday) is the best restaurant seating in san diego.

then we walked up the beach a bit, and liesl gave me her gift: another coupon book. this one had 46 little coupon strips, most of which were for hugs or kisses. but there were lots of coupons for meals with her and dates with her. the funny difference between max’s and liesl’s is that liesl’s are coupons for her time — i’d still be paying for the meal or movie. i’m not complaining — time with my 15 year-old daughter: i’ll take it!

we drove to fashion valley mall, where jeannie gave me her gift — a beautiful message in a card, along with instructions to go to the tommy bahama store and pick out a shirt (i have an old one that’s pretty worn out, and had been wanting a new one). once we got in the store, and i started debating between a fun one and a conservative one, she told me to get two!

while at the mall — jeannie and the kids took me to two movies in a row (yeah, a double feature!). first, we saw terminator salvation (which i’d seen at a midnight movie wednesday night, but the kids didn’t know that), and night at the museum 2. with that, our family time was done, and we took the kids home.

then the adult portion of the day started! jeannie and i met two couple friends (the freeses and the palmers) at hoffer’s cigar bar for pre-dinner fun. then we went to the riviera supper club — it’s this funky steak restaurant with amazing steaks and a rat-packy vibe to it. but the unique feature of the place is that they bring your steak to your table raw. and there’s a massive grill in the middle of the dining rom, where you grill your own food. it was totally a kick. and we had bacon chocolate cake for dessert. seriously.

after that, everyone came back to our house for drinks and more laughter. good time.

what a great day!

happy memorial day everyone. enjoy the day off — and watch for a big announcement here tomorrow morning…

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