Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Celebrating 40

There was a time in my life when 40 seemed so . . . old.  But, you know what they say.  Forty is supposedly the new thirty.  I wouldn't know.  But my guy just might.  He celebrated 40 years today.
So, 40 is a big one . . . right?  It wasn't until a month ago that it hit me that Seth was going to be FORTY.  I mean, I knew he was.  But it really didn't sink in.  And, when it did, I sort of panicked.  Because we needed to celebrate!  What do you do for a guy who does not at all want to be the center of attention, who is not at all interested in any kind of party, much less one in his honor?  What do you do for a guy who, years ago, said he did not ever want any kind of surprise party for any reason?

That's easy.  You plan a surprise party for him! 
The very first party I ever hosted was a surprise 40th birthday party for my parents.  I was 14 years old.  I was so excited.  I saved my allowance to purchase invitations, a cake, nuts (give me a break . . . it was, like, 1992) and a few decorations.  I can still very vividly remember walking into the Hallmark store to look for the invitations.  I had the party in the fellowship hall at our church and invited all of our extended family and church family.  The worst part was thinking of an excuse to get my parents to church.  I have no idea how I can up with this (and, looking back, it really was awful), but I told them we needed to go to the church for some kind of end-of-the-year fellowship for the church softball team.  That didn't work.  They said we weren't going.  So I did the only thing I knew to do.  I called my aunt because I was kind of sort of freaking out a bit.  She ended up talking to my mom and just telling her that they had to go to church no questions asked.  I mean, we were out of options, and it was the day of the party.  I don't know whether or not my parents figured it out at that point, but I really do think they were very surprised.

Seth's party was nothing like that.  It was definitely a surprise.  But it was more of a dinner party instead of a party party.  He'd been talking for months now about getting together with a couple of his high school buddies.  They both came to Georgia to stand with Seth when we were married.  But we've seen them during the past 16 years only at weddings and funerals.  Most recently Seth told me we were all going to get together and go to their old high school's football game this fall.  That never worked out.  But this did.  I invited them and their families, and that was it.

Seth worked in Wyoming last week and was scheduled to fly back on Friday afternoon.  I'd planned the party for Friday evening.  But what I didn't plan on was his flight getting canceled at the last minute due to mechanical problems.  I sort of imagined the worst but hoped for the best.  It all worked out, and he got home right on time.  I'd told him only that we had plans for the evening, and I actually didn't even tell him that until I knew his flight was canceled.  It wasn't until he got home that he knew people were coming to our house.  He just didn't know who.

He was so surprised.  And I'm pretty sure he didn't mind a bit!  
My favorite part was, of course, planning the menu.  We had Chic-fil-a nuggets (for the children because there were seven of them), roasted shrimp cocktail, muffulettas (from the most delightful little Italian deli that we've talked about going to for years but never have), broccoli salad (because I felt like I needed some kind of salad), hot crab dip (a new recipe that, I think, was my favorite of everything!) with pita chips, spinach artichoke dip, a fruit and cheese platter and party meatballs.
And, of course, a cake.  Seth's favorite is a carrot cake, but I just didn't have time to pull that off.  So the absolute next best thing is a white chocolate raspberry bundt cake from one of my favorite bakeries.
I wish I would've gotten a picture of Seth with his buddies, but I didn't.  I mean, that just didn't seem like something 40 year olds do (not that I would know because I'm not 40). 

There are so many things I love about this guy right here, so many things I appreciate and admire.  I'm thankful he loves me and is so patient with me.  I'm thankful he loves our children and works hard for us.  I'm thankful he desires most of all to live a life that brings honor and glory to God. 

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