So below is the story of Brooke turning 16, getting a car, and getting her license.
As many of you know, we celebrated her birthday on Sunday the 20th (her bday is the 23rd) because of daddy going in the hospital on the 21st. Little did she know, we had bought her a car and her uncle Jack was deliving it to us that day. He arrived at my parents, we hid the car in the backyard, papa, uncle J, and daddy gave it a quick wash and nana and mom decorated. More on the car later....
So here is Brooke in her Sweet Sixteen birthday hat (which she wore most of Sunday and most of Wednesday) getting ready to head to her birthday dinner.
She decided on TGIFridays because she LOVES the Jack Daniels burger. We decided to save cake for our house since she wanted a Cheesecake Factory cheesecake and I didn't think TGIF would appreciate a CF cake coming into their place of business. So off we went, Brooke, Brittany (DD2-SD), nana, papa, uncle Jack, aunt Debbie, cousin Jaclyn, uncle Ronnie, aunt Debbie (yes we have more than 1), mom, dad, and frend Sarah.
Here are Brittany, Sarah, Jaclyn, & Brooke
After dinner we headed back to the nana & papa's house to open presents and eventually have that wonderful cake! After opening wonderful gifts, she finally got to the littlest bag. Inside was a key... all we heard was screaming and "where is it?". I don't think they got out the deck doors fast enough (LOL) and were falling over each other to get in the car.
She was so excited. We ended up with a 2008 Hyundai Elantra GLS and we love it as much as she does. (My sales pitch for those of you interested in a new car...it gets about 39 mpg hwy and about 32 city. Hers has the aux plug & button so she can plug in her iPod...very cool and it has XM radio...which I am totally loving. Plus you can't beat the warranty. It is the #2 sedan in the country between the Accord and the Camry and it is listed as one of the top 5 "greenest" cars for those of you who are very into green. And that is pretty good since it is not a hybrid or flexfuel. And if you live in Virginia...check out Gateway Hyundai of Richmond and ask for Shawn as your salesman. Tell him Jack's sister sent you his way and make sure Jack knows when you get to dealing with the finance manager.)
So below is her car pictured outside Uncle Ronnie & Aunt Debbie's house:
Now there is a little more to the birthday story......(for my "belles", I have mentioned a certain boy to you before now here is more to the story). There is a certain boy that has been friends with Brooke since kindergarden. When we originally started planning a Sweet 16 party, his name was first on the list. Well when we decided not to have the party, I knew she still wanted him to join us. She asked permission (we don't call boys at our house) to call him and invite him to "dinner" with us. Well, he didn't respond. Not like him. So the day before, I took matters into my own hands and called his house and left a message for him or his mother to call me back. Mom called (he was working) and I mentioned the party. She said he had to work but he could probably come over after work, got the directions to where we would be. She said the reason he didn't call back was he couldn't...they were on vacation, can't get a signal at their lake place, and didn't get the message and therefore didn't respond. I told her we would be more than happy for him to come have cake with us, but it would be OK if he didn't come, yet if he felt like coming, we would love to have him over. So after the girls drove the car about 100 times around the circle my parents live on and decided to take a break, they were standing in the yard when HE showed up!! So he took a ride in the car around the circle (unfortunately friend jumped in the front seat even though precocious little cousin Jaclyn yelled that he had front seat and HE himself yelling shotgun) and then they came in. I offered him cake and he replied No thanks, I don't eat cake or sweets or anything like that. So I am quite impressed that said boy came over for cake even though he doesn't eat cake! I think this is a very good sign for maybe something developing here. When it was time for friend and HIM to leave, they all walked outside to say their goodbyes....friend left, Brooke walked him to his truck, and precocious little cousin hinted that the fam was watching from inside...so she missed out on the birthday hug he was getting ready to give her. GEEZ!! But she had a wonderful birthday celebration anyway.
Wednesday came and we were at the DMV at quarter to eight (yes in the AM) and ended up being #2 and #3 in line (I figured I would renew my license while we were there). Brooke took the road test, passed with flying colors, and sat for her new DL picture:
Here she is coming out of the DMV office into the waiting room with her license in hand:
And here she is in her car with her DL:
I turned her loose at that point (or so it seems). But everything worked out well, I went back to the hospital and she went "off". She came to the hospital twice that day and she and her sis went off somewhere else (can't remember where now) and they went to church that night. Worrying about my daddy and making sure he was taken good care of helped me not worry about my baby out there driving by herself. I wasn't really worried about her, she is a very good driver and from day 1 @ 15, I have never been scared to ride with her. And I let her drive often and in all kinds of situations so she would be prepared when the time came. But just the thought of me not being in the car in case a situation came up, makes you worry.
But baby girl, don't you worry...you've worked hard and accomplished so much in your short 16 years of life, and I know you will continue to do the same things...drive off into the sunset sweetheart and know that I am very proud of you and that we love you so much!! (By the way, when do you start paying for your own gas??)