Monday, June 23, 2014

Father's Day and My Birthday

Andrew and I aren't very good at giving gifts to each other. It started the very first Christmas we were married. We got married nine days before Christmas and by the time the holiday was here we were in a hostel in Rome (yes, in a hostel—not in a hotel—you read that right).

"I don't have anything for you," Andrew said.

"I don't have anything for you, either," I admitted.

It was the start of a glorious tradition of never getting presents for any occasion ever. But every now and then we break from tradition and surprise each other, especially now that the kids are old enough to notice things like "Hey! Your stockings are completely empty!" Presents equal love, right?

On Father's Day the kids and I gave Andrew a calendar we'd worked on together.

He was quite surprised.

And then around Saturday he began to feel guilty that he hadn't done anything for my birthday yet (I'd been sick in bed all week and he went to scout camp, remember?) so he put me down for a nap and took the kids out shopping (and I slept for over four hours so apparently wasn't quite up to snuff yet and needed a nap).

I suppose they didn't actually leave to go shopping until Benjamin woke up from his nap. That explains why I was able to get a phone call. There's no way Andrew would take the kids shopping for four hours. Just saying. Anyway...

I had woken up and was wondering if my family was ever going to come home when the phone rang.

"Hi Mom!" said Rachel. "Would cheesecake make you sad?"

"Yes," I said, because I haven't been able to really enjoy cheesecake since I was pregnant with Rachel. I don't know what happened—something inside of me snapped or something—but I was pregnant with Rachel and went to our Relief Society Christmas dinner and they served cheesecake for dessert. And I loved cheesecake. And as I lifted a forkful to my mouth I thought to myself, "This is going to be heavenly!" but then it wasn't. It was beyond disappointing. It was run-to-the-bathroom-and-scrape-my-tongue-off-with-a-paper-towel nasty. And I have never enjoyed cheesecake since.

"She said no!" Rachel squealed and hung up the phone.

I should have called them back, I'll admit that, but in my defense they were all secretive about their plans—not telling me where they were going, not telling me what they were getting, threatening to disable the "find my friend" app that lets me stalk Andrew to see if he's coming home from work yet—that I wondered if "She said no" was code for something else. Maybe the original question wasn't even "Would cheesecake make you sad?" but "Does Mom want cheesecake?"

When they got home I said, "I hope you didn't bring a cheesecake home. You know I don't like cheesecake."

"What?!" Andrew said.

"I should have called back..." I started to say.

"You should have called back!" Andrew agreed and then admitted, "We got a cheesecake. Rachel said to. It was her fault."

"But Mom said..."

"I said that cheesecake would make me cry," I said.

"No. I said, 'Would cheesecake make you cry?' and you said...yes. You said yes?"

"I said yes. Yes, cheesecake would make me cry."

"Yes. No. Whatever. Look—I hate talking on the phone!" she lamented and then begged, "Can we keep it? Pleeeeeease?"

To Andrew's credit he also brought home a package of white chocolate macadamia nut cookies.

On Sunday morning we all went to church together. For the first time in weeks. I wanted to get a picture of Benjamin wearing a new-to-him outfit (courtesy of Susanne) and he was totally down with having his picture taken but when the girls heard I was going to take pictures this is what happened:

Rachel decided he needed a big, fat bow on his head and Miriam thought that if it was going to be a good picture it should probably have her in it...

Benjamin smiled painfully for the camera after successfully batting Rachel's hands away and pulling the bow off his head...

Then Rachel jumped in with her toothbrush...

Anyway, I thought he was pretty cute (and the girls weren't too shabby either). The bow was from the present that Andrew got for me (since I got something for him for Father's Day—what have I started?!). He put the box on the couch, threw a blanket over it, and put the bow on top (he didn't want to waste wrapping paper) so I opened it before breakfast. He got me a bread maker!

"And I'm totally going to make bread with it, too," he said. "It's like when husbands get their wives power tools so that they can use them, only I don't like power tools so I'm just going to make bread."

I can't figure out if my present is the bread machine or homemade bread for the rest of my life...

Although I didn't eat any cake it was still fun to be sung to. Benjamin still remembers the last time we did all this was for him (and in fact when he saw the HAPPY BIRTHDAY banner strung across the window when he woke up in the morning he happily pounded his chest and shouted, "ME!!") so he made a few attempts at blowing out my candles but in the end I was able to blow them out myself.


  1. Those are great pictures of you and Rachel! I love that she wanted to pose with you. :)

    And that outfit looks good on Benjamin. Yay, I'm glad something fit him.

    I enjoyed reading about your birthday, and gifts - hooray for a new tradition! :)

  2. Love Benjamin cute face. Glad you had a happy birthday. Mostly, glad you are all well!

  3. Oh cheese cake. Yum. Sad you still can't enjoy it.