Everytime I wake up at a seemingly insanely early hour, my first thought is, "Aw man, I can't go back to sleep." And my next thought is, "Why on earth do I have to be awake two hours before sunrise?" On the bright side, it's much easier to wake up and be awake, rather than being half asleep for the first several hours of the day. So anyway, we got dressed and later Mom and Sarah and Steve came by and we all set out.
We got to the Los Angeles temple at about nine, which was two and a half hours before the ceremony. No one else was there yet, so we just hung out in front of the visitors' center, which was closed for remodeling. We were kind of sulking because as we were arriving at the temple, Steve was talking to some friends from Hawaii on the phone, who happened to also be in the Southern California area, and saying things like, "Irvine? Sure, we have no reason to hurry back to Fresno. So after we go to the Glendale Galleria..." Now we're actually not clear on the main geography of SoCal (despite growing up there), but when we hear Irvine, we know it's "past Disneyland." So we'd just been in the car four hours driving south to LA, then we were going to drive about half an hour or so north to Glendale for lunch, and now they're saying we're going to drive an hour and a half south again to Irvine before we can finally go home?
The Glendale Galleria (aka "the mall") thing also seemed strange, but we speculated it might be for Mom to buy Aurora and her husband something for their new apartment. That's fine--it's Aurora's day, after all. But then Sarah told us it was to buy her (Sarah) a prom dress. At this point we're like, "Why is it that we're finally back home and not only are we not going to Disneyland, but everyone gets to go gallavanting around the region doing random things they want to do except us?" Being cranky from waking up at four and spending four hours in the car, this was upsetting, so we asked, "When do we get to go to Kinokuniya?" Steve said, "Oh, about that, I'll take you to this other place in San Jose." San Jose being much closer to San Francisco, on the opposite side of Fresno, it sounded like what Steve really meant to say was, "We're not." And since we were being brats, that's the first thing we mentioned to Dad when we saw him and he asked how we were doing. It was the main thing on our minds. I really should have known that his first reaction would be to try and figure out if he could take us there himself.
Then Aurora finally showed up with her fiance, and so we all went into the temple. Ironically, the only endowed member of Aurora's immediate family is Mom (well technically Dad is (was?), but he can't get a recommend anymore, so it doesn't matter), so we all waited in the waiting room while everybody else (Mom, Steve, our aunt Zina, and the groom's two friends) joined them for the ceremony. While all that was going on, for some reason Athena and I couldn't stop ourselves from crying. We're really not sure why, because we're pretty sure it wasn't because our sister was going off and getting married, and it wasn't because of what we were sulking about. Athena thinks it's because we hadn't seen Dad in so long, and because we hadn't been to the temple in so long, and that makes a lot of sense. But I also think it might have something to do with our current mixed feelings on the idea of family. Dad seemed to have a hard time dealing with the tears though, because as soon as Athena said, "Maybe we should have brought those crackers (we hadn't eaten since five, and it wasn't much then)," he was out the door and off to the 7-11.
The ceremony finally finished, and so it was time to take pictures! Lots of pictures were taken, but, as I've mentioned before, we don't have a camera, so I have none to post. I know people will be e-mailing pictures to each other, and I think we'll be included in that, so we should be getting some. I'm not sure how Aurora would feel about having all those pictures posted online, so I think I'll just post the ones with us in them, but I think everyone's favorite was the one of the groom and his two friends. One of the grounds crew had happened to leave a wheelbarrow with a bunch of rakes and a shovel, so his friends had a rake and a shovel while the groom held the bouquet and they posed around it.
Next it was time to meet up at the Tam O'Shanter Inn in Glendale for lunch. But first, Mom had to pick some stuff up from her office. So we went over there and saw some old pictures of us at office parties and such. There was a really cute one with us and Sarah as Sailors Moon, Mercury, and Chibi-Moon. She was so little then, Sarah was.
We finally made it to lunch, where we found out what "toad in the hole" is, sort of. I always wondered what Beast Boy was referring to in the Revolutions episode of Teen Titans. There were lots of fun stories and jokes told. Zina told of the ordeal in getting the wedding dress. Aurora had given her measurements to Aunt Becky (an incredible seamstress) and so Becky made the dress. Zina was to pick it up on the way to the airport. But Becky lives in a crazy town that's not always very efficient, and there was a train stopped on the tracks between where Zina was and where Becky was. Becky had lived there long enough to know that the train would be there for several more hours, and Zina had a plane to catch. So Becky decided to walk the dress to Zina. I don't remember all the details, but I do remember she had to climb between train cars, and she had a runin with the police. Zina said for all she knew, Becky was in jail as we spoke.
Everyone was too full for cake, so they decided not to cut it. It wasn't a big cake, so there was talk of freezing it until Aurora and Josh's friends' wedding, which apparently was coming up. And then they would end up not eating it for some reason and it would just be passed along forever. Someone mentioned bronzing it. There were also miniature speeches, because we all agreed that people do that kind of thing at wedding events, but no one really cared enough to make a full speech. (Don't worry--Aurora and Josh didn't care at all.) One of their friends did say that the two of them are like two really weird-looking jigsaw pieces that somehow fit together. We all thought it was a fitting analogy.
After that, everyone went their separate ways. We went with Dad and his wife to Kinokuniya while Mom and them went to the mall. It was kind of fun along the way, because Dad had something that Aurora and Josh had forgotten, and we happened to pull up next to the car they were in at a stop light, so we were able to just hand it over then. But that seems like something that's only cool if you were there.
And then we were back a Kinokuniya. As expected, they've rearranged the manga section because it's freaking huge now. (Because they carry domestic manga, as well as imports.) So we had a bit of a hard time finding our way around, but eventually we got a copy of Saiyuki Gaiden one (for so long now, we've had volume two, sad and all alone--and now our collection of Saiyuki manga that has another word after Saiyuki is complete! (as for Saiyuki by itself... not so much)), and a bunch of other stuff, including Gakuen Alice 1. We're kind of sad we didn't buy more now, but yesterday we were like, "No, we can't spend all our money!" Even though we were using the birthday money Dad brought for us. We had to guess which volume of HaruToki we needed next, because it's been so long, but fortunately we guessed right.
Then we went and met people at the mall, and as it turned out they decided Irvine was too far away, so we went home. Athena had a massive headache by then (from waking up at four and getting carsick and crying), so we stopped at MacDonald's to get her some fries, since they're nourishment that doesn't take too much effort. And then we came home. About an hour or so before we got back, Athena was feeling much better and it was very quiet so we had Steve put in one of our Disney's Greatest Hits CDs and we had a Rousing Disney Sing-along! That was really fun. We haven't been doing enough singing lately. Maybe that's what we should do for our birthday--Disney karaoke!
And then we came home and held ourselves up just long enough to say prayer with Celeste and get ready for bed. The end.
Today I'm thankful for our first chance this week to play a lot of HaruToki, shiny new manga (now we have to figure out how we're going to make time to read it), more people remembering our birthday than we expected, yummy yummy ice cream at the Tam O'Shanter Inn, and themed restaurants that don't go halfway.