So here's the story (and a long one). My sister and I originally wanted to do a surprise party. The problem with that was I had no clue what their schedule was for the week. The orignal party was to be held on Sunday the 21st. The problem with that was my aunt, unknowingly, already bought them Cirque du Soleil tickets for that day. I immediately thought, "Hey, that's great!" because I was looking on sending them out of the house for a couple of hours at some play and then bring them in for dinner and the guests. But with the tickets came a free admission to the Toronto Exhibition. My parents haven't gone there for about ten years, so they decided to go. The second desired day was over the next weeked (this coming). But the problem with that is that they are taking a road trip to Windsor. Then came the actual day of their anniversary, the 23rd. But they were leaving to go to Niagara Falls on the 23rd and back on the evening of the 24th. That's where my sister and I had an idea. My parents have always wanted to remove the carpet in our family room, but as my parents told me just yesterday, no one wanted to do the job, probably b/c it's a small job. We decided to take it up a notch and not only remove the carpet, but redecorate the room. It seemed like a fun project, but the deadline had to be made (and we just made it, too!). The funny thing is that neither myself or my sister knew what to expect when we pulled the carpet. We knew there were tiles underneath, so we knew it was going to be hard work to pull out the staples and the nail boards, but we also had a dog. And anyone who has a dog can tell you, they see the carpet as a giant toilet. Talking to my cousins/friends, they told us we were in over our heads. I kept hoping that they were wrong. At 11:30 am on Tuesday morning, my parents headed off. I started off right away by moving all the furniture from one room to another. Anyone ever lift a ten year old 27" Sony Trinitron? When I finished moving the tv, I felt confident "this" could be done. Then I tried to move the three-seater couch and got stuck at the threshold. I called a friend to help out(since my sister was working 9-5). This was really a stressfull, yet fun project. We couldn't really buy any supplies or new furniture b/c we have no place to put it. So on the evening of Tuesday, we hit Ikea and Home Depot. Ikea was a funny story b/c they were sold out of the tv cabinet we were looking at. So I had to drop my sister/friend off at home and drive half an hour to an Ikea at another city to pick it up. I just made it too! As soon as I walked in, they were just closing up. Luckily, the other store called ahead to put the unit on hold for me. Total time I sent out of the house just driving: Approx. 2 hours. The next day went a bit smoother. I still had to go to Home Depot to pick up a few extra supplies since we measured wrong. I also had to go to the electronic store to pick up some extra cable. But otherwise, it was pretty smooth. BEFORE AFTER I have both still pictures and video of the whole thing. Right at the start when they pull out of the driveway to their reactions and the stuff inbetween like my close call at Ikea and our pit stop at Wendy's. It should be a neat addon gift when I give them a DVD containing all the footage. And yes, they loved it. My mom kept saying, "it's magic". They left at 11:30 on Tuesday and were back at 6:30 on Wednesday. We finished about 5:30 with my sister getting the cake around 6:00. They called around that time, saying they were close to home, so I stalled by telling them to pick up dinner.