Monday, May 17, 2010

Seattle was Fun, and now it's my Birthday!

We had so much fun this weekend, even if some sisters had to take a little rest on the hill from Pike Place Market.

We were in our hotel room changing for dinner by 7:30 Friday night -- having first tried to check into the Sheraton (after leaving our car for valet parking) instead of at The Westin where we had reservations. A minor Oops (someone knows Seattle well, but doesn't listen carefully. . . but that someone very generously did all the weekend driving so no complaints!)

The next day, we started shopping as soon as the stores were open, and we only stopped for a 15-minute mall sandwich break between then and our martini break at 5. For efficiency, we started with Macy's and Nordstrom's, but we also hit Banana Republic, Free People, The Gap, J. Crew, Anthropologie (a few stellar buys here --we love this store!) and Urban Outfitters (went in accidentally, thinking we'd opened the door to Anthropologie, v. disappointed by how far A. had fallen since our last visit 'til we realized we were in the wrong store -- very relieved and amused to recognize our error and leave quickly!).

A few shots from the change room hallways

The dress on the right went home with Rachel . . . and Hilary found her mother-of-the-bride dress (also on the right).

But don't feel bad for Leona just because she didn't get either of the dresses pictured above. That sister went home with many bags INCLUDING the dress that almost got away. She found a Calvin Klein dress she loved, but they only had it in an 8 and a 14. She was able to try it in a different print/colour in a 10 -- perfect fit! Between Macy's and Nordstrom's, there was a possibility of 1 left online, which she'd have to wait to go back home and order, crossing her fingers they'd ship to Canada. There were also 6 or 7 left in a few shops in the Eastern states, and she was actually calculating how many favours she could call in from travelling friends. She got the bar code and sent it to her husband, assigning him to calling department stores back in Vancouver to track down her dress, her size. Then when we went back in to pick up a few items in Macy's on Sunday, she insisted on going back one last time to search the racks -- and voila, one had been returned shortly after she left on Saturday! A size 12, so it will have to be taken in but she is now one happy sister. Even happier because I talked her into buying the 10 in the other print, pointing out that she'd remembered the dress being $190 and it was only $128 -- with the international discount, two for the price of one!

Another amazing-but-true shopping story -- Rachel proved her trainer's worth every penny when she decided that she'd join Hilary and Leona in some pooltime despite not having brought a swimsuit. No, no, she didn't opt for skinny-dipping, but almost as suprisingly popped into Old Navy to buy a bikini for $20 -- in the door at 5:45, back out at 5:50, with a v. cute bikini that she looked fabulous in -- and I can't say her age, but she's going to New York next year to celebrate the big one. . . Given my own dread of bathing-suit shopping, the number of suits tried on to achieve the least fitting-room uglies, I was stunned!

No wonder Leona ordered the Skinny Bitch Martini and raised her glass in Rachel's honour! And yes, since no Sisters'Shopping weekend would be complete without a martini break, we carefully honoured tradition.

Waiting for the drinksand all the healthy food . . .
Don't worry -- we balanced this all with chips and chocolate bars and cider to take back to our rooms. Sadly, I crashed while the younger sisters compared purchases -- this shopping is hard work and I need my beauty sleep.
But no worries, 'cause there was more of the same on Sunday with one more round of picking up items we'd deliberated over and, of course, discovery of Leona's dress.
Home now, but not yet on the island, because it's my birthday today and I'm trying to stir up a little something for tonight -- Pater might have fallen down on the job a bit and is trying to make it up with some swishy dinner reservations. Always a very good fall-back! But I'm crossing my fingers he might still be able to pull off a family meal in the apartment with a cute little granddaughter and a pile of CupCakes, and I think a daughter or two might help him out. We'll see. Meanwhile, I've already had a fantastic sunshine run around the seawall with Megan and her energetic little dog, and am meeting my sister Rachel for drinks later this afternoon. Sadly, the Fluevog shoe 40-year-retrospective exhibition at the Vancouver Museum is closed today -- as I found out only after the 25-minute walk. So that pleasure is still ahead of me, on
the summer fun list.
So I've officially left my mid-50s and am rounding the corner to the next big birthday, with a few years left 'til I get there. Happy 57th to me! Given the alternative, and given how blessed I am, I'm going to celebrate my long life so far -- feel free to raise a glass of whatever you enjoy and use me as your excuse!
For now, I'm going to kick back with my mystery novel (Reginald Hill, good ol'Dalziel and Pascoe) and enjoy some birthday downtime . .