Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Birthday Celebration With Elvis

Yesterday was a very BIG day for Viola. The day started out as any normal day for her would. Breakfast, daily morning routines, but normal ended there.  About 1:00pm she got a Royal surprise when her grand daughter Kelly and grand son Rob and his girlfriend Danette, walked into her room and told her they were there to go with her on a very special trip.  Kelly helped her pick out a pretty blouse and slacks, and a warm coat.

Then it was off to Hood River for a train ride on the Blue Blue Christmas Train with Rayvis, an Elvis impersonator.  But she didn't know that until she was on the train.

The Depot was all decorated for Christmas.  The Polar Express was also running that evening so there were lots of people and very little place to park.  Joe managed to find a place very close to the depot.  She had special help getting on the train also.

We had assigned seating with linen table cloths silver, and glass. Very, Very Nice.

This was our menu and we all chose the Lasagna.
Appetizers:-House smoked salmon mousse with smoked paprika and White Oak Farm organic micro greens. Served with handmade lavash crackers

-Sliced baguette bread and whipped sweet cream butter.

Main course:

-Top Sirloin Steak. Certified Angus top sirloin, 8 oz steak, grilled and served with Tuscan roasted mashed potatoes, sautéed green beans and beef demi-glaze.

Vegetarian Alternate:
-Handmade Fresh Pasta Lasagna, baked in individual platters. A combination of Ricotta, mozzarella and sharp Grana cheese, with slow roasted tomato sauce, herbs and extra virgin olive oil.


- Hood River Apple and Marionberry cobbler with Vanilla Chantilly cream

After our meal, we were ushered into another car (the Train stopped at the little community of Odell (end of the line for this particular train) where for almost an hour,  while he was singing, he would remove a scarf from his neck (that his helper kept replacing with more) and put the scarf around a lady's neck and a very sweet kiss on the cheek. I don't think Viola will ever be the same. No, the men didn't get scarves.

He sang a mixture of Christmas songs, love songs, and rock and roll.

After the show, he changed costumes, and came through the cars, posing for pictures, handing out buttons that said I SAW THE KING ON THE MT. HOOD RAILROAD and thanking each one for coming.

I think the smile on her face says it all don't you?

Rob (the apple of his grandma's eye)  and Danette

It was a long day but a fun day. We loved the fact that we were told to stay in our seats until everyone was off the train. Then the train was backed up even to the track side depot door.  A lift was put in place, and Viola was helped on to the lift by Joe, and lowered to the ground and we exited with the steps after the lift was removed.  Once inside, we stayed with Viola while Joe got the car and brought it right up to the other door of the depot. I can't say enough thank yous  about  the attention of the Mt. Hood RR staff  making her day so special. After church today, I went to Fred Meyers and had prints made of some of the pictures we took so she can share them with her lady friends at her birthday breakfast at a local restaurant on Tuesday.  The first Tuesday of each month, they meet for breakfast and those who had a birthday in that month get their breakfast paid for by the other ladies.  Wednesday is her regular day at Milwaukie Senior Center and I'm sure she will share her pictures there also.  Then Thursday, the 6th is her actual 98th birthday and she will be spending it with her sister Marlene.

One final note. A long time ago, I made plans with my sister to take her and her friend to the airport this morning to go to Hawaii for a week.  When I made the plans for Viola's special day I totally forgot about it.  But Jan and I worked it all out. She arrived just before Kelly and Rob and Danette got here. So we had a quick visit and to my great joy, when she comes back from Hawaii she is going to spend a few days with me.  I have nothing on my calendar for those days and it's going to stay that way.  I need some sister time. She enjoyed the quiet time here by herself while we were gone. So it was a win win situation in the end.