My wife is turning 40 this week, and is feeling a bit down about it. I remember a couple of years ago I kind of felt the same way. It’s kind of random in that it’s really just another year, but at the same time, emotionally, 40 is kind of a turning point. Many of us simply start to feel… well… old. Physically and emotionally there’s really no difference between one day and the next, except on our birthdays. For some strange reason, on that day WE’RE different. But not really.
Anyway, she was feeling a bit down this past week due to the demise of her 4th decade of life. Now, my wife normally LOVES to celebrate things. Birthdays, holidays, imaginary holidays (like monthaversaries and half-birthdays), etc. She decorates the house, buys balloons, etc. We don’t get rid of the balloons until they sag enough to get in the way. Last year our birthday balloons last about 10 months. We REALLY were hoping they’d go the whole year, but oh well.
Now obviously you can’t plan your own birthday party. Someone has to throw you one. But she was conflicted on if she really wanted to celebrate or not. So, I told her I’d organize a small get-together at a friends house. Just a handful of her favorite people. Something nice, but mellow. She thanked me, and I could tell she was bummed we weren’t doing something bigger.
It’s okay, because that plan was a total fabrication. A lie, if you will. But a little white lie. Because what I REALLY planned was right up her alley: A little kids style birthday bash at the little park in our community.
Now I’m notoriously bad at keeping surprise events from her. Not others. If someone else is doing something for her it’s no problem. But if I’M throwing her a party, or taking her to dinner, or something like that I almost always blow it before the event. Not this time (although there were some CLOSE calls!).
We left the house yesterday to “go to our friend’s place for the party.” I drove a couple blocks, and told her I needed to make a quick stop at a neighbor’s house to grab something. This neighbor lives right against the park. She looks over and says, “OH! Someone’s throwing a party! They have a bounce castle! Wait… that girl looks like my sister.” Huh… so it does….
She was TOTALLY surprised. I invited her friends, family, and co-workers, and told them all to bring their kids. Everyone sang happy birthday as we walked over to the party. Ordered pizza’s, played little kids’ party games, at birthday cake, sang happy birthday again (obvs). What else am I forgetting? Oh yeah, A GIANT BOUNCY HOUSE WITH A SLIDE!
Yup. I went there. A giant bouncy house for my princess who was turning 10 (x4). We had a great party. We also played ring toss, horseshoes, and corn-hole. Naturally we had to do a round of Pin The Tail On The Donkey.
I actually had a few other games planned that we never got to do: Egg and spoon races, water-balloon toss, 3-legged-races, and a few others.
Well, I suppose there was one other game we had to play, that no little kids party could do without… POTATO SACK RACES!
So we had loads of fun, the birthday girl got to feel like a little kid again, and everyone ha an awesome time. And, frankly, if giggles like these don’t indicate fun I don’t know what does:
Happy Birthday pumpkin-pie, I love you!
As always, thanks for reading, and you’re welcome.
Living the Dream,