The reason I borrowed my nieces at the weekend was so I could take them as a birthday surprise for my father, whose birthday was on Sunday. He loves all his grandchildren, but has a special bond with the 4-year-old, as when she was a year old my sister was very ill and my parents spent a lot of time looking after them.
My parents knew New Man and I were coming, but weren't expecting anyone else. When we arrived on Saturday, I went into the house and said, "I'm afraid I can't leave your birthday present in the car until tomorrow, so can you come out and help me bring it in?"
His face when he saw the children was a picture, and he had an absolutely fantastic weekend with them.
The other surprise we had for him was that the 4-year-old and I had made him a birthday cake - and that WAS left in the back of the car for the next day. We had made the cake together on Friday afternoon, then I iced it after she had gone to bed and she decorated it with jelly babies and chocolate chips before we left my house in the morning. She was very conscious that it was a surprise, and kept reminding me not to tell Grandfather about it.
Unfortunately, she did let the cat out of the bag... Just after we arrived, he said, "It's lovely to have NewHouse and New Man here, but to have you as well is the icing on the cake."
My niece hastened to correct him: "Oh no, Grandfather, it was Aunt NewHouse who iced the cake."