Friday, August 18, 2006

Happy Birthday My Son

Here are the clues for the birthday scavengar hunt for your gift.

VOBBK PWDFVROK! (It was a "rot14" code.)

You are eleven!
Use the clues to find your ....the boys yelled out GIFT!

A piece here and a peice there, look for one under the stair (some 2x4's under the basement stairs)
Is it larger than a mouse? Is it smaller than a house? Is a 35 feet tall? No! It is behind the wall... (more 2x4s behind the upstairs wall in their bedroom)
Can you? Will you? Are you able? Look next in the table.... (inside our dining room table-we have a table that is one rails and slides open-the plans to the lego table)
The last place to look is look is not made of feathers, the last place to look is the cubes of leather (our cube leather ottomans that have a flip top-inside 2 books and hardware to build the lego table)

All of these clues were written out in code that they have to crack. I always start the code with Happy Birthday and then the name of the child so they have a few clues to break the code. The codes are getting harder to crack, hopefully allowing me and DH a little bit of extra shut eye. (Yah right.)

Our birthday tradition has evolved over the years. Two years ago I decided to make it a treasure hunt for their gift. I mean, we go through all this angst of getting them the "perfect" gift. We wrap it and put it on the table. He finds it, rips open the paper and the climax is over. I wanted it to last a little longer. So, I printed up a small poster and left it on the dining table. They found the papers and wondered where in the world was their gift? I let them know it was a treasure hunt and shouts of joy were heard.

Little did I know that two years down the line I would be up until 1 in the morning writing rhymes and codes for the monkies to run around the house like screaming banshees following the clues. 'Cause you know that all of them must participate. Every child now must have their own treasure hunt-even the ones that don't read. The big ones will do it for the littles.

Only then for them to find a piece of the gift, not realize what it is and say, "What?! I didn't want some darn lumber. Why aren't there any toys?" over and over again. (Note to self: add gratitude to the curriculum and family home evening)

DH and I breathe another sigh of relief that this child has made it another year. He hasn't required stitches this year or a cast. We are starting to joke that our job with this child is keep him out of prison but only half joking. (Impulse control will come one day right?) He is not climbing out of second story windows or squirting hershey syrup under all the couch cushions anymore so there is progress.

There were lots of pictures taken. Much sugar was consumed and lots of smiles were on the children's faces. It was a good day.

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