Wednesday, February 27, 2013

I Spy Anniversary Date

It's hard to believe, but yesterday was our 18th wedding anniversary. Some days it feels as if I've known my husband all my life... and other days I could swear we just met the other day. But every single day is an adventure, and it's one we're both glad to be enjoying together.

To celebrate, we decided to have another "Family Date Day" since everyone enjoyed our day LAST YEAR so much. This year our theme was I Spy. I originally saw the idea HERE on The Dating Divas, but of course I just HAD to put our own spin on things.
My husband gave the original book to me as a Christmas surprise the year before we were married, and we picked the rest up as they were released. These books have been a special part of our lives. They traveled with us while we toured with 90 teens in our early marriage. They were with us at the hospital as "distractions" during the births of both our children. Our children colored on the pages as toddlers, and we've all gone cross-eyed trying to find the last thing in a rhyme we've completed dozens of times before. The spines are broken and a few pages have come loose, but we don't have the heart to replace these books. They've become "real" to us just the way they are.

For our special day, rather than deciding to eat out we chose to create a rhyme and shop at Trader Joe's for fun treats. Our rhyme was: 

I spy something crunchy, a deep dark brown, and something sweet.
Four fizzy goodies, something round and substitute meat.
 A creamy surprise, and something quite hot.
Something that's raw, and something that's not.

 The Something hot turned out to be a stop on the way, at a tiny local coffeehouse we'd been meaning to try for quite some time that serves Ethiopian coffee. The girls had chai, and the boys each enjoyed fresh mochas. Once at the store, we all had fun running around and considering options for each of the items on our list. We ended up with: 

something crunchy - sour cream & onion corn puffs
a deep dark brown -Irish breakfast tea (I'm rather addicted & we were out anyway)
something sweet - dark chocolate peanut butter cups
four fizzy goodies - Hansen's root beer
something round - smoked gouda cheese slices
substitute meat - eggs (needed for the brownies)
a creamy surprise - roasted red pepper tomato soup
something quite hot - a brownie baking mix
something that's raw - heirloom tomatoes
and something that's not - hamburger buns

The kids LOVED this, and asked if we could do this again... this was definitely a repeat idea for when we have no idea what to do for dinner. It was cheaper than eating out, MUCH healthier... AND a ton of fun!

After our shopping trip, we headed to the art museum for another I Spy adventure. We had a list of things to look for, and it took us two hours to find our favorite art display with each of the following: 

a bowl
a happy person (This is HARD at an art museum! Everyone was scowling!)
a city
the sun
a tool
an angel
a window
a pet
a book
a family
someone working
someone important
the color blue
fancy clothing
a chair
a mountain
a mother
a boat
people in battle
a farmer
a table
an animal
a house
a child
a circle
and jewelry.

We brought the camera with, so we could look up and study some of our favorite "unknown" artists at a later date. Here are our favorite images from our hunt. 

Jade Mountain, (artist unknown) the largest piece of carved jade outside of China, our "mountain" and Blessing of the Tuna Fleet at Groix, (by Paul Signac) one of two paintings we chose for "a boat." These were my son's favorites. 

 Landscape with Cattle and Sheep, (by Constant Emile Troyon) our "farmer" and The Comtesse d'Egmont Pignatelli in Spanish Costume, (by Alexander Roslin) our "pet" were my daughter's favorites. 

My husband was very intrigued by a Platform Rocking Chair by Wenzel Friedrich, and I could have sat all day staring at A New Orchard and Garden by William Lawson; a book about 17th century English garden designs. 

When we had worn our feet (and knees) completely out, we headed back home for lunch.... Gouda grilled cheese sandwiches with heirloom tomatoes & root beer. Then we played the Wii game Ultimate I Spy together, and finished the evening by watching Mission Impossible while munching on warm-from-the-oven brownies, and tea.

We had a TON of fun together. the kids loved the treasure hunting, and my husband & I loved how we had a great day without breaking the bank. This is one of those dates that just might need to be repeated in the near future.

I love being married to a man whose not to old to play with me.... or our kids. 

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