Dinner out with friends

Tonight Troy and I met our wonderful friends for dinner at Olive Garden. During the past 4 years and crisis after crisis, our friends Mike & Sherry have been there for us. I can't even begin to tell you how much they have done for us. Put it this way, they are the kind of friends that you never even have to ask for their help. They just instinctively know and are there without hesitation.

To give you just a very tiny example of their kindness. Here is an idea of how awesome they are.

When Troy was injured, it happened about 200 miles from our home. He spent weeks in the hospital. I had been running back and forth and staying in a hotel. It happened right before Thanksgiving.

As December rolled around, It was such a stressful time. I'm generally one of those "all out Christmas" decorators but, that year, I couldn't muster any Christmas spirit. My mind was so occupied with Troy and praying he will walk again some day.

I remember sitting at the hospital and I used one of the public computers and sent Sherry an email about how depressing it was with no decorations at my home. I think I just fell apart for a moment and Sherry was the one I went all "pity party" on.

After a couple of days at the hospital I drove home to take care of things. It was late at night and I pulled up to our home and my whole yard was lit up with animated deer, snowman, Christmas tree and candy canes. I just sat there in the truck and cried my eyes out. I knew immediately who had done it. There was a beautiful wreath on my door and other outside decorations.

We were on a bowling league together but, I had to bow out at the time so, I knew exactly where she was that evening and headed to the alley blubbering like a fool.

A couple of weeks later, Troy could be released from the hospital as long as I had all the "required" hospital equipment in place. So, Sherry came over one day and we moved everything out of our dining room and into a storage unit to make way for the hospital bed and other equipment. Our living room became kind of packed in a bit too so, I had no where to put a Christmas tree. So, I just figured we weren't going to have a Christmas tree that year.

One evening Mike shows up with this beautiful decorated lit up tabletop Christmas tree. Although we go out and get a big fresh Christmas tree every year now, that little Christmas tree still has a place of honor in our home during the holidays.

After the holiday, besides taking care of Troy full time, dealing with all the medical people who were at our house everyday, I was working full time (from home) and generally a lot of overtime trying to bring some money in. So, I was extremely busy. I had no idea when I was going to get outside and take down the decorations. Well, with friends like Mike & Sherry, you don't have to think of things like that! One day they were all gone. Sherry had come over at some point, taken them all down and took them to her house until we got a chance to take them to the storage unit.

So, that is just one of hundreds of things they have done for us. Even at our worst financial point, you could not pay me enough to no longer be friends with them! They are literally PRICELESS! They are the very best friends any one could ever ask for!
We are so blessed to have them in our life.

Tonight, since things have settled down a bit in our lives, we wanted to take them out to dinner just to say thanks. I know, not a very big compensation for them for all they have done.

Wow, this is taking me a long time to get around to the thrifty part of this post! LOL

Right now at Olive Garden, they are having their "Never Ending Pasta Bowl". It goes on for a couple of months. It is $8.95. That includes all the breadsticks and salad you want as well as trying all the different combinations of pastas. This really is a wonderful price for a very good meal.

We sat there for almost 4 hours tonight just relaxing, gabbing and laughing. The staff is absolutely wonderful and were attentive to our refills and whatever we needed. These days, it is so great to go to a nice restaurant, get a great meal at a low price and fantastic service.

So, if you are ever in the Southgate, Michigan area, stop in at Olive Garden! You can even tell them Diann at The Thrifty Groove sent ya! (They have my blog card there) LOL

Here is the link to the "Never Ending pasta bowl" so you can check out their new sauces (YUM!) Olive Garden

Oh yeah, No, I don't work for Olive Garden. LOL I just figure when I have a really good experience, I should share it!

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