Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Super Secret Birthday Surprise

I'm not sure why doing something special always seems so hard. Maybe it's just that I think too much about it. Or maybe I don't think about it enough. All I know is that after being together nearly 11 years, it just keeps getting harder to come up with ways to show my love/appreciation/admiration. Gosh, I even find myself choosing the same card that I have given before and I am pretty sure that I write nearly the exact same message for every occasion, be it a birthday, anniversary, Valentine's Day, etc. This year I got smart (or lazy, sometimes the two go hand in hand). I enlisted the help of others to help me wish Gabe a happy birthday.

40 is a milestone (though not one I am excited to experience) and it just seemed fitting to call upon the masses. About 3 and a half weeks prior to the big day I sent out an email and hoped for the best:

Dear friend or family member,

I have a little surprise I am working on for my most wonderful husband. You know, Gabe, the cute redheaded drummer/surfer/stay-at-home dad and all around good guy? Well, he’s turning 40 here really soon. August 26, to be exact. Can you believe it? I mean, truly he doesn’t look a day over 30! Anyway, back to the reason for the email. I have a favor to ask of you. You see, no matter how great our little family thinks he is, we have trouble convincing him how great everyone else thinks he is. So what I am asking is this: please write him a special note. It doesn’t need to be anything fancy. In fact, I’ve included a couple of templates should that make it easier. You can simply print it out, fill it in, and drop it in the mail. Of course, you can get creative here, too, people. Who needs a template when you’ve got creativity! I swear we must have some of the most talented friends and family on the planet. All I ask is that you mail it to me rather than email it. It’s just more special that way. (Of course if you are a total procrastinator and you cannot get it mailed in time, trust me I understand completely, emailing it will be acceptable!) Either way, just make sure I have it no later than August 25. On his birthday I am going to hang all of the messages in the house so that he can truly feel the love of his friends and family. I’ll even take pictures so you can see your contribution to the installation! Good idea, don’t you think?!

So get to it! Conjure up a memory, tell a story, draw a picture, or just fill in the blanks, but have fun and help me let this special guy know just how much he is loved/appreciated/admired/etc.

And because one of Gabe’s obsessions is getting the mail as soon as it is delivered, I am having to use an alternate address (kind of makes it like a top secret mission, doesn’t it?).

Thanks so much for your help! And shhhhhh!!! It's a secret!



Oh! And one more thing...I am not a very good hacker and therefore I was not able to send this to everyone that I would have liked from Gabe's address book (family and friends). If you can think of anyone who would like to participate, PLEASE either forward this to them or send me their email address so I can do so. As a matter of fact, if you do forward it, please just let me know to whom you did so that I do not email them again once my hacking skills have improved and I've gotten into Gabe's address book. ;)
And I think it turned out great:
Some messages were funny, some were touching, and some taught me a little more about the guy I married. But they were all special. It was fun to see how one person plays a role in so many others' lives. Despite the last minute printing, the frantic "am I too late?" texts and messages, and the fact that I had to send out a couple of harassing reminder emails, I am so happy I was able to give something to Gabe that he will always remember. He is truly a great guy and I think the response I received makes that pretty darn clear.

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