Sunday, October 14, 2007

Oh, What a Busy Week-End!

As you may have picked up on in past posts, I am a self-described fairly "laid back" (read lazy) housekeeper these days. My dear husband does the floors every week, and has ever since I went back to work full-time years ago. I hope he continues that wonderful habit when I retire next fall. But, I am much happier delving into a book on Saturdays than dusting, and decluttering. I get the laundry and the grocery shopping done, but on nice sunny Saturdays, I love to sit on my patio, or under a shade tree (depending on the intensity of the sun) and read between loads. I haven't always been this way, and I know DC hopes my clean gene comes back when I'm home more. For most people in our stage of life, the house pretty much stays the way they left it, and they can come home from work every night and find it just as neat and tidy as they made it on the week-end. Not when you have little munchkins in your house every afternoon! It is a constant battle against toys, fingerprints, and general chaos. But that is not a complaint, just an observation! Grandma doesn't mind the mess nearly as much as Grandpa does. But, I digress from the original topic.

I said all that to say this - I finally got busy on my house and even caught up on my ironing. Now, don't expect to come here and find my lightbulbs polished, as you would in Barb's house. But I did change some light bulbs that had burned out, so at least they are nice and clean! I also managed to move the very heavy dresser from the wall so that I could unplug a lamp that's not working and take it to Dad to see if he can fix it (I know he can, because he's always been our Mr. Fix-It and loves to be needed!) This energy came about because of - NO SUNSHINE! It is currently raining, and has been all night, and much of yesterday afternoon - very unusual for our arid land. In fact, poor DC, Kevin, and Sema sat at our university football game in the rain and cold - at least until the third quarter when they couldn't stand the cold and wet AND lousy playing!

One of my projects yesterday was getting the church ready for the annual Navajo project which we do at Christmas. For many years each church on our district buys gifts, pinto beans, flour, and other necessities for our friends on the reservations in New Mexico and Arizona. They are so appreciative and it has been such a great thing for us as well. Every year I, as chair of the missions program of our local church, come up with a new way to promote the project and let the folks know who needs what. Often I have placed some sort of ornament on an artificial tree in the lobby of the church, and they take the ornament telling them what age and gender to buy for. This year, I did it like this:


We'll have Christmas in November. I usually like it to be Christmas in October, but we got a later start this year - thanks to guess who, so we're putting it off until November 4 after the evening service. Everyone digs out their Christmas goodie recipes and makes something yummy. We'll have cider, have carols playing, and gather our gifts. Then in early December. all of the gifts from the entire state will be loaded on a huge tractor trailer, donated by a man who drives truck for the company my husband works for (owned by our wonderful Christian friends from our church), several people from the district will head down to the starting point, and head for the reservations to distribute the gifts. One of our great SS teachers, who teaches Anakin's class, is taking her class of 3rd, 4rd, and 5th graders on this mission trip, and I am so excited that she has caught that vision.

Once I had that project taken care of, I was free to concentrate on the house, the laundry, the shopping, and getting ready for DC's surprise birthday party. Now Dwight's birthday was in July and he turned 65. I was on my way home from my Minnesota trip on his actual birthday. I had arranged for flowers to be delivered to him that day, so he'd know I'd hadn't completely forgotten this important milestone. I kept trying to find a time all summer when the most people would be home, and not on vacation, so that we could celebrate appropriately. It never happened. Poor DC thought he was never getting anything for this significant birthday. Finally, on the day we celebrated my 60th, I gave him a gift certificate to buy a new suit - yes, he still wears suits!

So - finally - I announced a pot luck dinner for today after church for our SS class. Kristen made some really neat invitations, which I sneakily passed out to those members of our class, as well as our choir friends, family members, and others in church who know him well. It is called a "Baste," instead of a "Roast." Kristen's idea. We will share fun and humorous things about DC after we eat. On the surface, my husband appears to be a very quiet, retiring kind of guy. But he can come up with the funniest things on the spur of the moment, and people are very surprised when they see this side of him. So today should be fun.

But that meant a lot of work, self imposed, for me. The ideas just finally started percolating Thursday, so I've made many trips to the dollar store and the grocery store for both this event and the previous one mentioned.


The party went off beautifully. It took me a long time to figure out a way to get him away for the hour between Sunday School and the end of second service so that I could get the place set up with all the decorations. Then I thought of what I should take as my "pot luck" item - fresh rolls. This recipe is mixed up the night before, left out on the counter all night long, then rolled into the lightest, most heavenly crescent rolls imaginable. It occurred to me that I could roll them out at 6:00 this morning and they would be ready to bake just at the right time for him to come home and do that task for me. He was cluelessly very willing to get himself out of the church for the hour it took to bake 3 pans of rolls, cool them, and bring them back in time for dinner. When he finally arrived with rolls in hand, we sang "Happy Birthday" as he walked in the door. As you see, I managed to pull off the surprise! I will have to admit that he was mugging a bit for the camera!


Here are a few shots of the decorations:



Here are some of the photos I had made into 5x7's and placed in the middle of the tables.

Dwight's baby pictures

Dwight's baby pictures 2

First time fatherhood

dwight's baby pictures 3

First time grandfatherhood

Dwight's baby pictures 4

Here's the cake - the incorrect usage on the first word was not my fault! I guess I should have written it out for the girl at the bakery - You're, not Your! And following that, the picture that was put on the cake, so you can see it better.



Many people shared stories, and there was much laughter. The food was wonderful. The fellowship was priceless. I am so thankful for friends and family who love the Lord and love each other and love us.

One more project - when I woke up this morning (after about 3 hours of sleep), I remembered that I had signed up to bring dinner tomorrow tonight to a couple whose wife has just gotten out of the hospital with unbelievably serious surgery. DC suggested Swedish Meatballs, and I totally forgot when I went to the store - so back tomorrow for the ingredients I need.

Have a wonderful week!


PEA said...

That picture of him arriving at his party is priceless! lol What a wonderful surprise party you made for him and congratulations on being able to pull it off! hehe Everything looked wonderful and I've no doubt he was thrilled with it all:-) I love the board you made for the Navajo project, what a great idea!! Thank you so much for the birthday wishes you left, dear Dawn, it's friends like you that made it so very special for me. xoxo

Sherry said...

So sorry we missed it, we would have loved to be there! We do love Uncle Dwight LOTS though!! Make sure you pass the word along for us.

I have to say the improper use of your and you're, here and hear, their, there and they're...ALL time pet peeve-my 6th graders do it ALL the time!

Glad your weekend went well!

Barb @ A Chelsea Morning said...

What a great surprise, Dawn. It never would have occurred to me he was mugging for the camera, he must have been so shocked.

You've been incredibly busy! Planning all this and the big Christmas event at your church AND some cleaning. And just for the record, if you could have seen those lightbulbs, I'll bet you would have washed them too. If it makes you feel better, I only washed them because they're in the fixture over the dining room table and they show. I don't wash the lightbulbs that don't show. :-)

Becky said...

That was a wonderful surprise and a great party. You did a super job, and it was fun to see it all here on the blog.

Happy Birthday! to your dear husband.

Chrissie said...

Hi, Dawn. I've been lurking for a while and enjoy your blog. You did a great job on your hubby's party - you must have been hopping! Those rolls sound real good - could you pass on the recipe? God bless you and your family!

Theresa said...

What a wonderful party, you did a great job. Your husband looks totally shocked.

Susie said...

What a wonderful party you planned for this milestone birthday! His surprised look is priceless :)
You seem to juggle so many projects, it's no wonder you want to curl up with a book on the weekend!!

Diane J. said...

What a great time of fun, food and fellowship. That's my kind of trifecta. ;D

Coincidentally, we had a fellowship tonight after church to honor our pastor for pastor appreciation day and his 9th anniversary as our pastor.

I'm glad you had such a good time, and I'm sure your hubby wasn't faking all of that surprised expression, LOL! ;-)

Have a great new week.

Love and hugs,


Michelle-ozark crafter said...

Oh what a wonderful thing to do! That is so precious and sweet! I love his "surprise" look! LOL!

Robin said...

My goodness - you must be totally exhausted! What a fun party it must have been! I did a big suprise party for my husband's 50th - he loved it. Me - I'm not so much a party person - I told him when my big day arrives I would rather have a more subdued celebration!

Linda said...

I am thoroughly impressed Dawn. Great job!! I love your idea for the Mission gift giving. I am beginning to feel a bit of Christmas spirit (I just finished reading Jan Karon's Shepherd's Abiding).
What a great surprise party. He must have been thrilled.
I think all of this entitles you to a winter of reading and relaxation!!

Amanda said...

Looks like a great party!

Nancy said...

What a neat surprise and you captured the perfect picture... you are a very special wife! Does he realize how lucky he is? Thank you for sharing this, it really lets me see how loving and caring you are for others and that is a blessing indeed!

nancygrayce said...

Love a good birthday party! That was so great when he came in from doing the rolls!! That was a great look on his face! Happy birthday Mr. Grandpa Dawn

Kathleen Marie said...

Wow! You have been busy! I am like you when it comes to housework and my dh is a doll and helps out and son Joey does the vacuuming. His one major chore.

I agree that photo of you dh is just fabulous!

Now I think it is time for you to do some relaxing! Hugs!

Mary said...

I've enjoyed exploring your blog. The photos are beautiful and I've enjoyed many of your posts.

Have a terrific Tuesday.

Tammy said...

Wow, busy is right, Dawn!
But what a fun surprise party! I just know he'll always remember it and appreciate this!

I gave my husband a surprise party on his 40th...he had never had one before, and he was definitely surprised, too!

Today is his 47th, and he has a cold, so we're just going out to dinner. But the girls insist on giving him a treasure hunt tonight like he gave them! :)

Anyway, the pictures are all wonderful, Dawn!

Midlife Mom said...

What a wonderful surprise party for your husband! Don't know how you do all that you do!! You must be like the Energizer Bunny and just keep going and going!!!

Angela said...

You are an amazing woman, Dawn! I am so glad that you were able to pull off the surprise.

The Christmas project sounds like such a wonderful experience to be involved in. I love the ornaments to go on your project tree. So many people will be blessed by your kindness and support of the annual project.

May each day be filled with love and laughter!


Sharon Lynne said...

I'll excuse you from the housework with all that hub bub you've recently had!

You truly are blessed! With good friends, a loving husband, and an active family! And a God who love you MUCH!