Friday is date day for Logaanna. Logan has the whole day off and each week when I get home from work at 1:00, I find him rested up and freshly showered, looking his handsome best. We usually go to Panera, order a couple of Chopped Chicken Cobb salads with extra Herb Vinaigrette and a whole baguette to split between us, then go home and snuggle up on the couch for an entire afternoon of our current favorite show on Netflix.
But today was special. A few weeks ago, beside the tortilla aisle at Wal-Mart, Logan informed me that in honor of my 27th birthday he had sent out a global request for money. “After all the money comes in,” he said, “I’ll take you on a date and we’ll go pick you out a camera.” I was ecstatic about the prospect of owning a camera at long last and couldn’t wait to sneak it out of my back pocket to capture all the fun things that happen around me. Well, then my dear family began sending their gifts. Oooo-ee, but I have some generous people around me. I suddenly had the door thrown open to cameras way beyond anything I had ever dreamed of. I think even Logan was giddy with the prospect of having the resources to actually buy my dream camera.
So today was my birthday date. It didn’t take me long to decide on Dragon Express as the restaurant of choice…I basically have a chronic craving for steamed dumplings. Mabel curled up in my lap on the way there and back, occassionally touching my chin with the tip of her cold, wet nose. It was almost depressingly warm outside, but I liked the feel of the sun on the back of my arms as I walked into Dragon Express and picked up our brown paper bag of goodness.
Back home we watched the pilot of Monk, a show that Logan’s dad has long been a fan of, and we were not disappointed. It’s a funny, quirky, often tragic take on Sherlock Holmes, set in contemporary San Francisco.
In the middle of the show the doorbell rang, and I opened the door to find a small package on the doorstep. Inside was a personal library kit that I had twittered about a few days ago. My sister Esther had sent it to me as a birthday gift! It was so unexpected and thoughtful that I couldn’t stop grinning for about an hour. Everytime I see the pretty kit I break into smiles again…come on, who wouldn’t?
Next we gave our neighbor Brandy a ride to work and then began our camera search. On our way to Best Buy we stopped at Starbucks and I got my favorite, a Vanilla Rooibos tea latte. Logan got something boring like a mocha. Starbucks always feels like such a treat and it was fun to be sipping on a delicious beverage while on our quest.
Inside Best Buy I had kind of a love at first sight moment. The Olympus Pen E-Pl1 is just gorgeous. It has this sleek, retro look and is stainless steel. I thought I would die when Logan read the specs and grunted approvingly. We still looked at about a billion other cameras, then came home and studied up some more on-line, but it was soon apparent that the E-Pl1 was the perfect camera for me. It has great image quality, as good as a DSLR, but it’s still compact and simple and easy to use. Weeks ago, when I was describing to Logan what I was looking for, that’s basically what I said. So tonight I clicked confirm on my order and that gorgeous baby is on its way to me as I type.
A couple people came over later this evening to finish up a video that we’re working on for Advent Conspiracy. This is the last of three videos that I have helped make along with two students in the youth ministry. It’s been a really rewarding project and I have particularly loved seeing these two students use their talents to serve The Body.
Right now it’s 11:11 and Mabel is curled up at my feet with her nose neatly tucked under a lime green blanket. Out of the corner of my eye I can see the lights of our first ever Christmas tree. We splurged and bought a real tree, but I am so, so glad, because not until it was up did I realize that the smell of pine tree will forever be the smell of Christmas. It has been a constant source of happiness to me since the moment Vova and Logan brought it home from Wal-Mart. Kristi says that it looks like Little House on the Prairie with the popcorn and cranberries strung around it. That is just one more happy thought for me.
I know this post is shamelessly detailed and totally boring, but every part of this day was a delight and it needed to be said.