Ralph Retires

Ralph retirement inviteI had the BEST WEEKEND!!  About a month ago or so my mom called me and we cooked up a scheme to surprise my dad at his retirement party.  I booked my plane tickets and flew into SLC the morning of the party.  I took the Front Runner train down and my mom picked me up in AF.  We had a quick lunch and then gathered all our supplies to go help decorate at the hospital.  Dad’s coworkers gave him strict instructions that he was not to come down and check how things were going.  They told him they wanted it to be a complete surprise, but really, we just didn’t want him to see me!

The theme was so cute.  It was a travel theme and we had tables representing Europe, NYC, Hawaii, Mexico, etc.  And Vicki made my Dad the neatest quilt!  It was so beautiful.  2019-02-07 14.29.292019-02-07 14.30.162019-02-07 14.36.00

It was getting close to Party time, so I ran home to grab my costume.  Just a few days prior Landon had said, “Wouldn’t it be funny if Tara dressed up like how dad did when we surprised her in Hawaii?”  Best idea ever!  I brought Rusty’s braces teeth that he wore for Halloween and Natalie had a Mullet wig for me.  I wanted to wait for Natalie before I surprised Dad, and as fate would have it, Simon threw up right as they got off the freeway.  Luckily the DI was down the road so Nat ran in and got Simon a new outfit.  I got some pretty strange looks as I was out in front of the hospital waiting for her.  2019-02-07 16.01.02-1

Mom told me that the night before Dad had a dream that he was in the AF house where he grew up and that I came bounding up the stairs.  He must have had a premonition I was coming!2019-02-07 17.12.45-1

Landon came out to film me, but he accidentally turned it off when he wanted it on, and on when he wanted it off.  So, we have some really great footage of Landon’s feet, but none of the surprise.  Oh well.

When I walked in, he was surrounded by people and I panicked and didn’t know what to do.  So, I ducked down and was sneaking my way toward him. This was making people very nervous because I looked so creepy, so finally I just had to interrupt with a “Special Delivery for Ralph Cornell!”  It was so fun to see his face as he realized it was me.  He said, “It’s like looking into a mirror almost 20 years ago!”

It was fun to get to chat with neighbors and friends and coworkers and celebrate my Dad.  He is hardworking, steady, fun, just the greatest.  I’m grateful for all he did for our family in raising us and providing for us.  2019-02-07 17.11.252019-02-07 17.11.59

We picked up Mi Ranchito for dinner and gabbed the night away.

The next day Dad had to finish up some work so Mom and I went up to SLC to spend time with Nat and the boys.  We went to the Natural History Museum at the U.  It was really fun!  Then that evening we went down to Landon’s house to play VR.  Seriously, I want one so bad!

I was leaving Sat night, but got up early and met Jamie and Kasey for breakfast.  It’s always a good morning when I get to chat with my fun friends.

Then my parents and I went to the Pulitzer Prize Photograph Exhibit at BYU.  It was really neat!  And really sad.  Lots of heartwrenching situations.  But it was beautiful to see how an image could convey the sense of emotion like words never could.  I yelped us a lunch spot and we stumbled on THE BEST TACO PLACE EVER.  I heart these tacos.  Can’t wait to go back and eat them again.  Dad texted me the next day and said that, unbeknownst to all of us, they had just opened a location in AF! So, that pretty much means every day I’m in Utah for the rest of my life I shall eat these tacos and follow it with a Raspberry Dream from Swig 🙂 . 2019-02-09 14.41.35

I don’t think I’ve spent time with just me and my parents in years and years.  It was such a great day.  I felt so renewed and happy.  As we were driving to the airport my dad told me how much it meant to him that I had come out.  It meant a lot to me too!  I was so glad I got to be there.  Thanks Mom and Landon for the brilliant ideas and letting me come play for a weekend.  Ralph retirement letter

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