A stealthy stampin' surprise!

Last weekend, having been invited to coffee with my mum because "I haven't spent time with my daughter for AGES!", I was blindsided by the most incredible bunch of women in the most amazing and touching way I can imagine.

The "coffee date" was a front for a group of my wonderful stampin' team to throw me a surprise 40th birthday high tea and encourage my current, enormous aspiration to achieve the Stampin' Up! Grand Vacation for this year.

And a surprise it was.  I had absolutely no idea that there had been such a massive amount of sneaking around, a large number of little white lies and huge porkies told, plus a high level of skullduggery involved in the space of the week that it took them to pull together the most delightful afternoon that I'm about to share with you...

We got to Caroline's house - just a couple of streets away from the venue of the planned coffee date, to "drop off a stamp set that she wanted to borrow from my mum".  I had parked across the footpath out the front of her house and left my bag in the car, as I was only going to be a second while mum dropped off the stamp set, and I showed Caroline the card that I had made mum for her birthday the week before.

I was simultaneously rattling on about how I had discovered the wonders of hybrid card making using a combination of MDS and traditional methods and wondering why she was dragging me through her front entry way by the wrist, when I got around the corner to behold the beautiful sight of a table full of delights surrounded by an array of lovely ladies shouting "SURPRISE!!!"

The moment was captured beautifully by SJ, after which I promptly burst into tears...

"What the...?!"  *tears*

"What the...?!"  *tears*

Here are some more images from the delightful afternoon...

Helium balloons in Pool Party, Coastal Cabana and Crisp Canteloupe...

Helium balloons in Pool Party, Coastal Cabana and Crisp Canteloupe...

Pretty tea things...

Pretty tea things...

Delightful cupcakes...

Delightful cupcakes...

Birthday banner in keeping with the colour theme...

Birthday banner in keeping with the colour theme...

Assorted deliciousness...

Assorted deliciousness...

Cheers!

Cheers!

Pretty flowers...

Pretty flowers...

Amazing embellishment...

Amazing embellishment...

Beautiful card and an incredibly generous gift...

Beautiful card and an incredibly generous gift...

Cake!

Cake!

The "I'm about to get teary again" hand flap...

The "I'm about to get teary again" hand flap...

The "taking it all in and getting misty all over again" look that I spent much of the afternoon displaying...

The "taking it all in and getting misty all over again" look that I spent much of the afternoon displaying...

I almost don't have the words to convey how truly stunned, amazed, grateful and humbled I was on the day and continue to be at the incredible love and support that envelops our team.

Thank you, my beautiful friends, you are a blessing in my life.

And to think it all started with rubber stamps...