Monday, February 1, 2010

Happy 40th to My Hubby!

The last few weeks I've been planning a surprise for Mark's birthday. I'm not going to call it a party because he specifically asked for NO PARTIES to commemorate the passage to age 40. So I nodded my head and said "Okay, no parties" and began scheming in my head for ways to get his friends and family together for a gathering which could not be described as a party. Well, it didn't take long to come up with an idea....after all, my husband is a physical education teacher and coach; he loves badminton, and he has keys to the gym. So the Quest for the Silver Birdie badminton tournament was born!

The name of the tournament is a spin-off of Mark's own p.e. tournament at school which he calls The Quest for the Golden Birdie. Every year he puts a lot of work into his badminton unit and spray-paints birdies gold, attaching them to wooden plaques for the winners of this prestigious competition. The entire high school student body gets out of class to watch for one hour as the best doubles and singles teams battle it out for top honors. Since Mark was turning 40 on January 30th and has a tinge of silver in his hair, the Silver Birdie was a natural title for this competition held in his honor. I emailed several friends from work, coaching, church, and family to try and take on the "old man" who is a pretty darn good badminton player (if his wife can say so herself). I put the participants into doubles teams; Cy wanted to play with Dad, and my sister helped me put 12 teams into 3 pools for pool play. The top 6 teams went into the winners (silver) bracket, while the bottom 6 teams went into the losers (bronze) bracket. Everybody had to play at least 4 games, and we had an open court for singles matches and free play/practice. (A huge thanks to Mark's friend/co-worker Uppy who taped four badminton courts on the gym floor the night before the big day!)

Mark thought he was driving to the school on a Saturday afternoon to pick up the twins from a birthday party. Part of that was true--the girls really did have a birthday party to attend, and the school was indeed the drop-off point (where parents dropped their girls off to ride with the birthday girl and her family to their party destination). Getting Mark into the actual school building on a Saturday proved to be an even bigger challenge than keeping all of this a secret from him (AND the kids!) for the past four weeks!! (After all, who wants to go into work on their day off??) At any rate, Mark was super-surprised. He and Cy took 2nd place behind his brothers for the Silver Birdie honors. Everyone had a great time!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Quest for Silver Birdie
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I am so grateful to everyone who helped me work behind the scenes to get this tournament ready...and to everyone who sent cards, called, brought "concessions" or came to play in the tournament. It was a lot of fun! And to my husband I say, Happy Birthday. I love you and I love the man of God you are becoming each and every day! (And I don't think you're "old" in any sense of the word.)
Gray hair is a crown of splendor;
it is attained by a righteous life.--Proverbs 16:31


Blogger Astrid said...

Happy Birthday Mark! What a fun way to celebrate a birthday!!!

February 1, 2010 at 2:55 PM  

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