"Oh Ali, this outfit is adorable, you have to get it," I said pulling out a newborn baby grow which said 'You can do it dad' on the front and arrows pointing to each of the arm and leg holes which were labelled as 'arm', 'arm', 'leg', 'leg'.
"Excellent!" Ali said taking it from me, "Only problem with that is that it will be the only baby grow Jak will be able to put on blip!" As Ali said it, I could just visualise Jak battling with a baby grow, trying to work out what goes where and we all burst into laughter.
"What about this one?" Cara said, pulling out a baby grow which said 'Party my crib 2am, bring a bottle' and a picture of a baby bottle.
"I think I am going to get both of them!" Ali said taking the baby grow I was holding and the baby grow that Cara had picked out. "You found anything Megan?" Ali called as Megan had been stood in the next isle flicking through some baby clothes,
"Yeah, I think this would be cute!" she said holding up a baby outfit which was red with white spots on and had a picture of Mickey Mouse on it. "I figured this was unisex as I know loads of people who love Mickey Mouse!"
"Love it," Ali trilled, bouncing up and down in silent excitement, "I just want to have this baby now!" she said happily,
"You don't believe me, sleepless nights Ali," Cara reminded, "You want Blip to stay in there for as long as possible!"
"Yeah I know, its just preparing for Blips arrival is making me so excited for his or her arrival. We still need to decorate the nursery too!"
"Woah hold your horses, your only two months gone Ali, you have a whole seven months of pregnancy to endure first!" I said,
"Yeah, don't remind me, I am sick of morning sickness and cravings already! You know the other day I had to send Jak to the all night shop to buy Ben and Jerry's ice cream and peanut butter!"
"Please don't say you ate them together!" Megan said looking disgusted,
"Hey, that's what I wanted to eat! Don't you like ice cream and peanut butter?"
"I love ice cream but I can't eat peanut butter as I am allergic to nuts,"
"Aww no that sucks! I love nuts," Ali said.
"You love nuts do you Ali?" Cara said before dodging out the way of a swipe from Ali,
"Watch it you," she warned Cara who just chuckled.
"I'm am really going to miss all of this! I can't believe I am not going to see Blip come into the world either!" I said as we all made our way towards the checkouts with the baby items for Blip. We had tried to find something for Cara to wear for her evening at the gallery but she couldn't find anything she liked and some of the outfits Megan, Ali and I were picking out for her, although we liked them Cara did not so we just settled for buying baby clothes today. As Cara had pointed out, she had weeks before the art show.
"Don't worry Anna, I promise you now that not a day will go buy where Blip doesn't know her aunty Anna and aunty Megan," Ali said giving me a one armed hug and smiling at me as we walked. Ali placed the baby clothes on the counter and the lady behind the desk made polite conversation whilst scanning each of the clothes, folding them and then placing them neatly into a bag. It had been a really nice shopping trip even if Ali complained that she spent far too much and that her bank account was not going to like her!
"Finally FOOD!" Liam cheered as we all reached the chinese all you can eat buffet, he must have been hungry as he filled his place with so much food he found it hard to carry it back to the table without food sliding off the place. I immediately filled my plate with my usual dish which was sweet and sour pork with egg fried rice and was eager to dig in.
"So how was your shopping trip?" Liam asked, his mouth full of food,
"Excuse me?" Cara asked, "Can you try that sentence again without a mouthful of food in your mouth,"
Liam swallowed his food, with great difficulty as he had shoved so much in his mouth in the first place, coughed and then said, "Sorry Mum," before looking sheepishly at Cara.
"How was your shopping trip," Liam asked again, a lot clearer than before.
"Was such good fun!" Ali enthused, "We bought tons of baby grows and baby things for Blip. He or she won't be short on clothes that's for sure!"
"And dare I ask how much you spent missy?" Jak asked trying to give Ali a stern look but failing miserably,
"No, you don't dare," Ali said looking sheepish but then grinning broadly at Jak, "I love you Jak!"
"I love you too!" He replied, blowing a kiss across the table to her.
As the evening drew to a close and everyone was getting full the talk returned to the fact that Megan and I were leaving, everyone raised a glass and said 'To Anna and Megan and their new adventure,' before we all took a sip. I realised in that second that I was so lucky to have a group of friends like this, so lucky to have so many people who cared about me and who loved me and would do anything for me. I cherished each and every one of them and would miss them all so much but I knew that I was doing the right thing by moving to America for a year, it would make me a more independent woman, America would most definitely be the making of both me and Megan and to say no to that kind of opportunity would have been crazy!
That night I didn't sleep very well, the nerves has kicked in, it was really happening, Megan and I would be boarding the plane to America at ten in the morning and my brain was in overdrive, thinking about everything. Had I packed everything? Was everything sorted for when I got to America? What if I couldn't find where I was going when I got there?
"Are you okay?" Megan whispered, cuddling up to me in bed and kissing my shoulder,
"Yeah, just nerves now,"
"Yeah me too babes, but we will be fine.
My last comforting thought before I finally dropped off to sleep is even though I was nervous, at least I wouldn't be alone, Megan would be with me.
"Have you packed everything?" Megan's parents asked both of us as we loaded everything into their car so that they could take us to the airport. I had not heard from my parents since I had told them and although that saddened me, I knew I was doing what was right for me instead of what they thought was right.
"Yes, everything is packed Dad, the bags are weighed and we have not gone over the weight limit and we only have two carry on bags each," Megan said as we both climbed into the car and I took one last look at my flat.
"Right, lets go!" Megan's dad said, starting the engine and setting off towards the airport.
"Are your friends meeting you there?" Megan's mum asked us,
"Yeah they are going to help us check in and are going to wave us off," I said distractedly watching my familiar surroundings flicker past as we drove.
"You have a good set of friends there!"
"Yeah, we are very lucky to have them!"
We arrived at the airport and Mr Warwick put our bags on a trolley for us and helped us into the airport with them. We managed to check in rather quickly and despite being told to arrive 2-3 hours before departure we found ourselves sitting in the departure lounge with time to kill, however Cara and the others had arrived by then so we had someone to talk to whilst we waited.
With ten minutes until the departure gates were due to open we started saying our goodbyes, both Megan and I went around everyone and gave them a hug, I kept catching people twice.
"Ring me as soon as you get there!" Cara said into my shoulder giving me a tight squeeze,
"Don't worry, we will!"
I smiled at them all through tear filled eyes and then turned to Megan just as the departure gates opened,
"To our new adventure," I said as I took her hand and headed through the gates and towards America.