We were supposed to go to Cristina's place in Karlsruhe, but I proposed that they come to ours instead. Then I emailed the Sommerhalters like 3 days before and the Nährings 2 days before and got them to join us. Hubby of course was in the dark, he thought that only the Dugands were coming for a simple lunch.
He was swimming in the indoor pool with the kids when the first guests arrived. As the Dugands are usually late for their appointments, he thought that he could afford to go ahead and take a dip. And the good thing was that of course he didn't bother to come out of the water when he heard the bell ring.
It was Stéphanie (the Dugands' eldest who came by on her own and she was starting to panic when she saw that the rest of her family had not arrived yet), followed closely by the Nährings. Then the Sommerhalters arrived and Hubby must then start to question about things as too many times the doorbell had rung. He must have also heard the noise made by the newly-arrived children (we had 11 kids in total yesterday), Mr Nähring's piano-playing...Voilà, that's why we called it a Surprise Birthday Party.
As you know, I do not have a BBQ pit. But I got the Sommerhalters to bring theirs plus the meat to be grilled. This Made in America charcoal pit shaped like an apple. The Dugands came with Cristina's famous Empanadas and Marinated Chicken (for BBQ). The Nährings brought the Birthday Cake.
Myself, it worked to my advantage that Hubby had his Team Building and could only fly home on Saturday night. I had some time to prepare a few dishes beforehand, e.g. Taboulé, a Chocolate-Coffee-Banana Cake, Thai Green Curry Chicken...and put them away in the second fridge before he could notice them. Then, it also worked out that he should decide to sleep in on Sunday morning, and I could get the Tomato Salad, Fruit Salad, Plain Rice, Strawberry-flavoured Whipped Cream done. He only saw me prepare the Foie Gras (Duck Liver) Toasts, the Prawn and Leek Risotto and the Spaghetti Aglio e Olio. Whew!
We had to keep the bulk of the kids away from the Playroom though, for if the older ones started to play the Playstation, the younger ones would turn up and smash the Plasma TV like they nearly did the last time. We have a rather big garden with a swing and a slide and the weather was really good, so you wonder why those kids wanted to stay indoors, don't you?
Towards the end of the day, Maria asked me to take out some of my recent purchases so that they could all admire them. That wasn't a good idea as I've been trying not to catch too much of Hubby's attention on them. But to say no would be to arouse too much suspicion so I took out a few items...
"Since when do you put on Sunglasses like those?"
"What's the point of paying so much for a pair of Sunglasses that you'll never wear?"
"I've never seen you in anything that you've bought in the past 3 years..."