Time Flies …

Funny how life intervenes in its documentation.

Probably why recorded history is so chock full of inaccuracies and controversies…

Well, since we last checked in on the world of That Darn Kat, the plot has thickened. My recently widowed Dad has *gasp* re-entered the scary world of dating. The family is still adjusting to it.

About a week ago, TDO and I had our lucky 13th anniversary. Which seemed as good a reason as any for me to throw a surprise vow renewal.

Really, it’s not as odd as it sounds. TDO had told me several times that he wanted to renew our vows. He loves parties. But he stresses out over the planning and the “will everyone we’ve invited come or will they reject me?” angst. So I figured, planning a surprise wedding was an excellent way to accomplish it with a minimum of stress on both our parts.

I must say, if you want a feeling of accomplishment, take a week where your entire family is already coming over for dinner on Tuesday, add in a surprise outdoor wedding you’re assembling on a week’s notice, and throw planning a dinner theatre production on top of that. It’s quite the exhilarating experience.

I managed to get all the invitations in the mail by Monday, confirmed all the RSVPs by Wednesday, and had most everything (including precooking three different pasta sauces) by Friday.

An Uncomfortable Encounter with Dad

On Friday, I had an unprecedented event. My dad dropped by.

I don’t recall that my dad has ever just “dropped by.” Or that he’s ever voluntarily started a conversation with me. So it was a day for all kinds of firsts, there. After briefly playing with the kids, he was awkwardly trying to broach some sort of subject, and being the perceptive daughter that I am, I figured he was trying to tell me what my sister had hipped me to previously–that he was dating.

“So I hear you’re seeing someone?” I said, finally putting him out of his misery. And thus began our very first conversation about relationships. Believe it or not, by the end, he had loosened up and really seemed relieved to be able to talk about it. He wasn’t sure if he was ready, or if it was the right person, etc. etc. In short, all the typical angst a person goes through when re-entering the dating game after a long time on the bench. Long story short, the conversation had been prompted by the fact that he had already scheduled a date with his new squeeze, and would have to duck out of the party early on Saturday. Which was cool with me. I was shocked that my entire family even agreed to come in the first place.

Spiderman 2, Confetti, and True Love

So I know you’re probably wondering how I managed to pull off a wedding where the Groom was a surprise guest. To be honest, I’m still trying to figure that part out myself. Thursday night, I realized I hadn’t bought the garlic bread. So how does one buy enough garlic bread to feed 25 people right in front of your husband, without him hipping to the fact that perhaps a few folks might be stopping in soon?

You throw yourself into Drama Queen overload and pretend to be awed by the fact that this store carries CHEESE garlic bread. Which Wal-Mart never has in. So we better stock up. Darn it, don’t you hate Wal-Mart? They get you addicted to a product and then stop carrying it? Let’s move on to the dairy aisle, hon…

Similarly, how does one bake a big ol’ chocolate cake for no apparent reason? Well, you claim that you’re making it for your Sunday School class, because you’re all rotating bringing in treats and tomorrow just happens to be your week…

And how do you sneak 25 of your friends and family into your house without your spouse noticing? Well, you can’t. So you take him to the movies to see Spiderman 2 while your sister takes the key you have cleverly hidden in your mailbox, goes to your Granny’s house to pick up your pasta sauces, and heats them and the garlic bread, while a friend comes in, pulls the decorations out of your infant daughter’s closet, inflates the neon helium balloons, and otherwise decorates your back deck for the wedding. Then after the movie, while you’re picking up your kids at the sitter’s, you call ahead to make sure everyone is there and ready.

And that’s how you end up pulling onto your cul de sac, while your husband wonders why on earth there appear to be ten or fifteen cars parked in the yard, completely caught off guard when you pull him out onto the deck, drop to one knee, and ask him if he’ll marry you. Right now. Right here.

So anyway, a few vows, several pounds of metallic confetti, and lots of pasta, cake, and laughter later, it was declared the best, most fun surprise wedding anyone had ever attended.

Just one word of advice, though. If your friend’s child should happen to come up with your son’s SuperSoaker and ask where he can fill it, it’s a good idea to check with his Mom first before showing him the outdoor hose…

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