Monday, April 5, 2010

Friday, April 2, 2010: Onkel Manfred's 75th Birthday

We enjoyed a wonderful night rest and began final preparations for Onkel Manfred’s 75th birthday celebration. Within minutes of waking, the telephone began ringing with celebratory wishes from around the globe. We had a challenge keeping a surprise visit from his former working colleagues a secret as he wanted to a have a relaxing breakfast before we began enlarging and setting the table. Gaby worked diligently to prepare wonderfully decorated appetizers for the visit. I had to sneak out to Gaby’s to help her bring chairs with Marios. Timing was critical as the surprise visitors came within minutes of Gaby arriving. The surprise worked and the morning was spent visiting. By the early afternoon, the next venue was being prepared. Elke brought four amazing kuchen, each tasting incredible and a creative indoor waterfall, which was assembled immediately and displayed to everyone’s delight. Then Jorg came with his two children, Phil and Adriana. We enjoyed the coffee and kuchen. As part of the celebration, Sandra got out the cloth soccer ball (inserted a large balloon) and all the children played fussball in the back yard. We went through 20 balloons, many which last 5 minutes after hitting a thorn bush or the pointed leaves of the many new plants coming out of the flowerbeds. Once the balloons were gone (at least the big ones), the children attempted to float Alexander's ship he had made with piece of wood and pieces of paper. By late afternoon, Rainer joined us with his daughter Katie and supper of four large Italian pizzas found their way to the large dining room table. With 14 people around the dinner table, we enjoyed the food, the dessert, a number of toasts, many “lustige stories (funny) and the interesting entertainment from the children. They played with TechDek (mini-skateboards), spoons, facial impressions of animals, and then a DS and DSI MarioBrother’s race with teams. The evening continued with many more funny stories about family visits, jokes, and pranks. By 23:30, the last guests left, our children watched the last of YouTube with Marios and Katie and then we hit the hay. What a wonderful day to have the privilege to celebrate 75 years for a great Onkel, his family, and his friends.

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