Saturday, August 21, 2010

I need help!

I can ask this, because Gunner said he wasn't able to access my blog in Afghanistan.  Guess those people don't know good blog reading when they see it!

Anyway, Gunner's 40th birthday is next month.  (That totally blows me away since I met him when he was 23!!!)

I'm stumped as to what to get him, or what to do for him.

I'm trying to think of something that will mean a lot, not cost a lot, and will be a great memory.  Everyone wants to have a special 40th birthday, and while we are going to plan something special when he gets back--I'm thinking a trip somewhere really cool sans kids--I don't want him to feel totally alone on his birthday.

So all 332 of you, I am sure you can provide me one inspirational idea that I can do or a combination of things that I can do to make him feel special while is halfway around the world.  Give me your best please, I am at a total loss!

18 comments:

Jen said...

For my husbands birthday last week I sent him a photo book of a bunch of our memories in it so he has something nice to look at while hes in afghani land. I made it on shutterfly and the price depends on what size you make, I just made the 5x7 size so its easier for him to store over there. Good luck!

Jill said...

My hubby has a birthday at the end of September. I'm doing a "card shower" for him. I messaged via Facebook a bunch of our mutual FB friends and asked them to send a birthday card to our home. In a few weeks, once they all come in, I'll send him a a big envelope full of birthday cards. I'll probably put some pictures our daughter made and some homemade goodies for him, too.

Just an idea. Oh, I love Jen's idea. I did a photo book for father's day and he brought it with him. It's a convenient way to bring a bunch of pictures with you without having them float all over the place and worry about bringing them back in their luggage.

Jen said...

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annoyed army wife said...

I love the card idea and the photo book ideas! I wish I was more creative to think of something!

Amber said...

I'm with Jen, a photobook with all your favorite memories.

silver star said...

Usually on 40th birthdays, they have a "over the hill" theme, so maybe a care package with that kind of theme, I also like the card shower and photo book ideas.

Uncle Dan said...

We think the "card shower" is a great idea & we'll participate if you decide to do it!!!

Megan (Sis B) said...

I just had a 40th party for one of the wives here tonight. I made a little photo book with "40 wishes for 40 years" and handed out blank 4x6 cards to all the guests. Everyone wrote a birthday wish, and the little kids drew pictures on blank cards to include. When I get the photos processed that I took, I'm going to give them to her to complete her book.

You could probably do something similar for him, minus the photos of the party part. Maybe use pictures from all parts of his life and then some drawings from the kids, and get as many people as possible to contribute to get 40 birthday wishes?

Lisa said...

I love the photo book idea!

For my mom's 40th, my dad got 40 pink flamingos put in all over our lawn. Maybe see if you can't get one of his soldiers in on the deal and have them decorate his room in some sort of "over the hill" theme?

Smiles said...

Here is a long list of brainstormed ideas. Thanks for the procrastination break. :-)

Cheap and fanciful but not really useful or practical - a box of balloons. An idea from a deployment ideas website I saw a while ago. If mail gets through quickly you can use small, blow them up yourself, water balloon size balloons. If general delivery takes a while, you can use small helium balloons (which tend to say inflated longer). The trick is to tape the ends all over the inside of the box so they don't float away upon opening. If you are mailing based on weight is is fairly cheap to send essentially a box of hot air but you do need a heavy duty box that won't crush easily so that might be heavier.

Another option would be to send a party in a box and/or just groups of 40 things: 40 not yet inflated balloons, 40 candles, 40 birthday cards (10 each from you/the kids, or 1 from 40 friends), 40 animal crackers to remind him of a family trip to the zoo, a crazy 40-over-the-hill centerpiece or two from the dollar store or Party Universe type store, Happy 40th napkins, 40 M&M's or Reese's Pieces or Raisins or pretzels or peanuts other kind of snack that he likes. Whatever comes in larger quantities that you can count 40 pieces out of and not end up with something not too big to send. 40 fortune cookies if he loves Chinese food. Does he read the Sunday funnies from the paper? Have the kids cut out 40 of their favorites over the next couple weeks. If he were home, where would he go to celebrate? What little token can you use to symbolize that place and send in place of being there? Fancy drink umbrellas, toothpicks or crazy straws?

Another idea - a list from you and each of the kids about your 40 favorite things about him or memories with him or a joint list you all work on together.

Another option if you already know where that special trip will be to: you could tease him for the length of his tour about that special vacation with 40 "clues" as to where it might be. Random facts about the geography or activities you can do. Examples: Average summer temperature is 75 degrees, population 40,000, the sunsets here are amazing, no malls in walking distance, 600 thread count sheets, no tv, elevation 2500 feet, and other random facts about the area that keep him guessing yet thinking about it. Anticipation can bring as much joy to people as the actual event according to a psychology article I read.

Wiley said...

DM celebrated his 40th a few weeks ago, and after reading the great suggestions here I wish I'd incorporated them. Instead I sent him a care package full of things that grow - sea monkeys, message beans, flowers in a bag etc. He had a good laugh when they arrived as I had written on the inside of the box 'life begins at 40'. And I thought it would be good for him to be able to nurture something over there.
It wasn't much, but along with photos of us together and DVDs of his favourite shows he was a pretty happy camper.

McMGrad89 said...

Wow! I will have to use some of these things for Gary. Better start planning now.

I think Gunner would appreciate any of these things and the kids would have a great time helping put it together.

:-) Annemarie

Mr. Superman & Mrs. S. said...

Maybe put together a photo album kind of like a story of your guys' life together from 23 to 40 :)

Yuki said...

I run into your blog not a long time ago but I really enjoy reading it!

My husband's birthday is next month too. I just ordered Birthday cake for him. They delivery to APO address.

Here's the link http://www.bakemeawish.com/operation-birthday-cakes.php

wifeunit said...

Someone already said it, but I was reminded of Shelle Michael's fb about sending 40 of a bunch of things to someone celebrating their fortieth. All kinds of things.

The Bolton Family said...

I went online and made Terry a memory book at walmart.com for his graduation from basic present. He loved it! He said he wants one every year for his birthday and christmas. :) I spent less than $100, it was EXCELLENT quality, and it would be cool to make a little timeline book from when he was 23 until now. :)

joyce said...

my son in Afghanistan can access facebbook---so maybe your husband can try accessing your facebook page if you have one? Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

You got lucky that your husband's, i'm assuming first box, will be his Bday box. My huband had lord knows how many boxes (each were good enough to be a bday box) before his actual birthday. By the time his birthday came, he needed or wanted not a thing so he got a box full of cookie and brownies.

http://amelonumc.com/clientimages/49635/desert-saferecipes.pdf


His co-workers loved the butterscotch ones. But the batches he got for his bday he didn't share. Hehe

-Laura