When Janette Frith turned 50, she knew she’d have a memorable day – but she didn’t quite expect the surprises that husband Chris and daughter Lauren had in store.
Chris, 53, and Lauren, 22, had planned the trip of a lifetime and a surprise party.
‘We wanted to do something special to mark my mum’s 50th because she’s amazing and always puts everyone else first,’ says Lauren.
‘She knew she was going to New York with me, my boyfriend and my dad, but not that eight of our friends and family were going as well.’
Janette, the owner of 3Bs Catering, says her friends turned up on the family’s Hayling Island driveway on the day of the trip.
‘They said they were coming and I didn’t believe them, I thought they’d come to say bye. I was so overwhelmed,’ she says.
More surprises followed, as the group was then met by Chris and Janette’s nephew and his girlfriend who were waiting at their hotel reception. Chris’s brother and his wife joined a day later.
Lauren says: ‘My mum said she couldn’t cope with any more surprises, she was so happy everyone came.’
Janette’s favourite part of the holiday was a helicopter ride over Manhattan on the day of her birthday. ‘It was amazing, we made memories that we’ll never forget.’
But the celebrations didn’t stop there, as Chris and Lauren had planned a surprise party for Janette at The Royal British Legion, Hayling Island, the weekend after the trip.
Janette says she had her suspicions about a party being planned, but was unaware that 70 people would attend, with friends and family even coming from the north.
‘When Lauren had me pick out an evening dress that was kind of like a prom dress for a night of drinks, I knew something was going on, but I just went along with it because I knew she must be planning something special,’ says Janette.
‘It was a fantastic night. My family mean everything to me and I’m so appreciative of all the effort they made.’
Chris, who celebrates 30 years of marriage to Janette in July, says: ‘Jan is a very special person to myself and Lauren so we wanted this experience to be memorable.’
‘Jan could be having a really bad day but would still find the time to be there for someone else with a smile and open arms.’
‘She really is amazing.’