This past Saturday was my husband's birthday. Last year he turned 30 and we did a huge surprise party shin-dig with lots of friends and family. This year Jim wanted to do something a lot different.
When I asked him in the weeks leading up to his birthday what he wanted, he told me several times he just wanted a day alone with me. That sounded like it would be as much of a gift to me as it would be to him and so at first I didn't really pursue making it happen. However, it began to weigh on me as I thought about it. This year Jim made my birthday the most special one I've had since we've been married and I realized that if a day with me was truly what he wanted, he completely deserved it.
Knowing that a full blown noreaster was scheduled to hit our area on Friday night, my amazing in-laws agreed to take our girls in spite of the weather. Jim and I dropped them off around 6 and headed to dinner as the snow was gently falling down. After dinner we naively decided to catch a movie at the theater (in an attempt to take full advantage of our time sans kids). It was less than two hours long, but when we emerged from the theater we discovered that several inches had accumulated on our car and the roads during that time. Fortunately my husband has mad driving skills (that are totally different than my mad driving skills) and got us home safely.
The next morning (Jim's birthday) we awoke at the crack of 9 am and were giddy over the fact that we "slept in". We took our time making eggs and bacon for breakfast and then enjoyed watching the snow falling down as we ate it. Afterward we got some ribs going in the crockpot for Jim's birthday dinner later on and then baked Jim's birthday cake together. The day moved at a much slower pace than usual and it what a nice pace it was. We were able to just enjoy being with each other and talk about nothing and everything. We wondered out loud why we didn't appreciate our time alone together more before we had kids and concluded that to a certain extent, it's the having the kids that really makes you appreciate the time alone with each other.
As the afternoon rolled around we began to prepare for going to pick the girls up. Jim shoveled the driveway and I vacuumed and cleaned the house. I called my mother-in-law to arrange the kid exchange, but instead she dropped a huge blessing on us by volunteering to keep the girls for ONE. MORE. NIGHT! I couldn't believe it. Never in my life had I gone an entire day without seeing my kids. Not because I'm a crazy obsessed mom or anything, but just because I'd never had an opportunity to get away over a weekend or anything like that before. But this was even better than a weekend getaway! I was snowed in at home with my husband on his birthday and without any kids for a WHOLE DAY. 24+ hours. This was a big deal to me. A priceless gift.
To round out the day we enjoyed a gourmet dinner at home by candlelight and just let the minutes pass by. Not because we wanted to waste them, but because we could afford to. There would be no getting up a dozen times in the middle of the night to find a bear or a binky. (At least not at our house - my in laws graciously dealt with that though). Every second was ours to do with as we saw fit. And it was so relaxing.
As we went to bed Saturday night Jim declared that he had a great birthday. I really think he had the best 31st birthday he could've asked for. A million thanks to my mother, father, and sister-in-law for making it all possible.