We've been through a lot of birthdays together and I'm very thankful for each one. They've been good years. Not always perfect, but pretty great. The older we get, the more I appreciate every happy, healthy year!
Dale is very difficult to buy presents for. In the past I've bought things that I thought were so brilliant but he never used them. There are many unread books and unused items and gadgets littering our house. Now I usually just buy him clothes which are at least practical. The kids also got him a game (Qwirkle) and I bought him a murse (man purse). Every day when he goes to work he scurries around collecting his wallet, phone, sunglasses, lunch, extra warm clothes in case he goes for a walk at lunch, and so on. He crams it all into one or two plastic Safeway bags. I hate plastic grocery bags so much. It's seriously one of my biggest pet peeves - they're messy and crinkly and look cheap so unless you're actually using them to carry groceries you've just bought (even then, I dislike them), I don't want to see them.* So I bought him a nice small simple black backpack. He wasn't thrilled and I don't have very high hopes that he'll actually use it because he has no problem with plastic bags. Obviously this gift is more for me than for him. I have secret dreams that he will grow to love this bag and won't know how he could have managed without it. Oh well, he loved the Jets hoodie.
* I happened to see this in the news today. Now THERE'S a good use for plastic bags!
To celebrate Dale's birthday, Neve had a gymnastics competition. I think it was called The Dale Classic. At least it should have been. It was an in-house competition to get some practice before the real competitions start. Neve did well and emerged as the gold medalist in her category.
Following that, the grandparents came over and we had strawberry cream cheese trifle (shout-out to Darla for the recipe - always a hit!). Dale let loose and had some, even though it was well after 7:00 p.m.