The Traveling Steve's

Happy 61th Birthday, DOS!

This weekend was Steve (DOS)’s birthday, and we celebrated with a quiet and lately rare weekend at home in Orlando. I wanted to take DOS out to dinner for his birthday, but as we were going away the next day to Daytona Beach Shores he said I could take him out for lunch instead, as we would be eating out every night for the next week, so a nice dinner at home was perfect.

Coincidentally, my neighbors across the street were having a big party for their two year old twins and lots of other kids, and had rented this huge jungle gym, which DOS had to try out.

I love it – DISNEY comes to our neighbor’s house!

Ok, I made him, as well as wear this Disney birthday “top’ hat for a couple pics. DOS would not go down the slide though, but at least he was a sport and posed on it!

Wow – they didn’t have this kind of stuff when I was two years old!

After the jungle gym fun, we headed out to Chili’s to meet our friends who had just gotten back from a Med cruise from Barcelona. As they had both had recent birthdays in late September and October, we had a gift exchange after lunch, and caught up on their travels as well as ours.

Lunch with our friends Ben and Tom, just back from a 12 night Mediterranean cruise.
Looks just their dog too!
This is really a bottle opener? Yes, DOS and a souvenier from Italy too!
This gift has to be better than that bottle opener I just know it!
I like this better -it’s a candle from one of our favorite places in Italy – Positano!

I grilled out a nice steak dinner (as if there is anything else I know how to cook – LOL!) and served it up indoors with shrimp cocktail, salad, steak, and a nice red vino, followed by a couple slices of cheesecake. We actually both love to dine at home as we are out of town so often, and this night was no exception. It’s nice Fall weather here in Orlando at the end of October, which means nice outdoor walks, and enjoying the outdoor poolside setting without the humidity, which is nice while I’m grilling the steaks, or having a pre-dinner drink. And yes, we keep the Christmas lights up year round, although we will add a couple things such as a light-up wreath in a couple weeks.

After dinner, my brother Andy, his partner Art, and adorable two year old dog Barnabas, called us via Face Time to sing Happy Birthday to DOS, as well as watch him open the present they had sent him from Virginia.

Happy Birthday from Andy, Art, and Barnabas in Virginia!

This huge box had been sitting in the living room all week waiting on DOS to open it on his birthday. (Overhead color-changing spot lights added for effect!)

At least this time we don’t have to bring a huge gift home on the plane!

As DOS struggled and eventually opened the box, out pops a huge (miniature) giraffe! Well a plush stuffed giraffe obviously, it looked quite real and stood some four feet tall!

What the hell is this?
It can’t be . . . can it?
Ok it is – just what we need for our collection!

Wow – for the person who has everything – it will actually go nice against the wall with some of our Africa souvenirs, photos and canvases.

It’s so fluffy and lifelike too!

After saying by to Andy and Art, and finding a temporary area for the giraffe, we finished up the evening with dessert. As it was just the two of us and we were going away in the morning, I had bought two slices of cheesecake. I displayed the cheesecake on two separate plates, side by side, with two candles, a ‘one’ and a ‘six’, and set them on the table in that order. (instead of the correct order of six and one.) No it’s not sweet sixteen, DOS; you know it’s actually sixty one! DOS took the ‘six’ piece but blew out both candles, handing me the ‘one’ piece, commenting that the six looked more like an eight. I’m really not trying to premature aging you I assured him!

I made it easy for you to blow out with only two candles instead of 61.

I then gave DOS a couple small canvas prints (11 x 16, and 12 x 12) I had made from a couple photos on our trip to Finland in February. I used Walgreens for the prints as I was rushed to get them done in time, and the quality was unfortunatly disappointing. The color is not very good in the first photo of me standing by the window in our log cabin there, while it’s downright terrible in the second one on the snowmobile.

Canvas print processed at Walgreen’s from a photo of our log cabin stay in Finland.
Terrible color and grainy texture of this outdoor canvas print from Walgreen’s.

By comparison, the 24 x 36 canvas print shown below, which DOS had made a while back at Costco, is amazing. All three photos were taken by the same camera (my iPhone), but the difference in quality is no comparison. Costco’s canvas prints take a week or more to process, as they send their canvas prints out for processing (vs Walgreens in-house one hour canvas print processing) and the quality is well worth the wait from Costco.

Excellent quality 24 x 36 canvas from Costco. This was taken in the main lodge in Inari, Finland, standing by the fireplace with a photo painting of the Northern Lights hanging on the wall. It really captured the essence of that wonderful trip!

Fortunately Walgreens does offer a 100% money back guarantee, so I’ll return them when we get back from our next trip.

Tomorrow we are heading to Daytona Beach Shores for a week of more birthday celebrating, but for now, good night, and Happy Birthday DOS and your new friend!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *