About a week and half ago I got a crazy idea. My parents bought my plane tickets to come home for Christmas several months ago in order to get a good deal. Since they bought the tickets, I had received offers from two good friends to drive home to Tennessee and back for Christmas break. I turned them down, explaining that I already had made plans to fly. Then, it hit me. About a week and a half ago. What if I switched my Christmas tickets to Thanksgiving and then took up these offers to drive there and back for Christmas? Genius. I know. That's why I'm a college students. So I called my dad, we switched the tickets, and kept our mouths shut. No one knew but my dad and I. He picked me up from the airport on Thursday and we went to my sister's swim meet. I casually walked in and stood next to her and just asked how the meet was going. She looked up and seriously jumped back 5 feet as if she had seen a ghost. Maybe she thought she had. "What are you doing here?!" Nice to see you, too. She was shocked and I couldn't stop laughing. My mom was helping out with the meet so we snuck down to the pool area and I asked my same casual, "How's the meet going?" question. My mom slowly turned around and looked at me. Silent. She was beyond confused. She just kinda stared for a few seconds - it seemed like forever, then her eyes went to my little sister. "She thinks I'm Alia," was my immediate thought. Later, she told me, "I just looked at you and couldn't figure out why Alia wasn't wearing her suit, then I saw Alia and it clicked." She screamed and hugged me and cried and didn't let go for about five minutes. She says it was the most surprised she had ever been in her life. She had no idea. I guess I can keep some secrets :)
The stressful week before trying to get all my school work done before I missed 3 days of classes, knowing I'm going to be driving all the way to Tennessee and then back to Utah, the extra money it took to switch my ticket and the gas money I'll be spending in December - it was all so worth it, to see my mom's face (her shock and complete joy), to be home, to have a break from school before things get crazy, to spend Thanksgiving with my family for the first time in three years - totally worth it. I feel so lucky, so blessed, and I'm so dang excited to see my adorable niece! I will miss having Thanksgiving with Reni and Will and my grandparents - but this sure is nice. (Plus I hear its snowing, and sleeting, and freezing there, today it was 70 degrees in Tennessee - you can be jealous :)
Happy Thanksgiving from the Volunteer State!