Tuesday, June 2, 2009


I did it ... I shocked the heck out of my husband. On Sunday, we had a surprise 40th birthday party for him at Montgomery Inn Boathouse. Mmmmmm, ribs and beer!

I'm really good at keeping secrets, but I'm not very good at keeping surprises. It's just too exciting to keep to myself! I usually end up giving the boys a Christmas gift I picked up for them on the day I get it instead of hiding it for later.

So, it was amazing that I was able to keep this party a secret from him during the six months I have been planning it. But it went off without a hitch -- beautiful weather, great food, wonderful company. Did I mention the really cool cake?

Dang, I'm just.that.good!

I wrote a little poem for Dan in honor of the big event ... several people have asked for it in print.

Doctor Daniel Shelly,
Husband and father supreme.
It’s my honey’s big 40th birthday,
I’ll bet it all seems like a dream.

I can’t believe such time has come,
And gone so fast apace.
I can’t believe it’s forty years,
On that wondrous, lovable face.

You have more degrees than we have children,
Four different alma maters in all.
Lehigh, William & Mary, and Florida State,
But University of Cincinnati was where you found your call.

We met at UC graduate school,
In Business Communication Class.
I should have known I met my match,
When Dan made the first pass.

You said you were like a Swiss Army Knife.
Me, I said I was a Franklin Planner.
Two complete opposites,
But that didn’t seem to matter.

Our “study dates” were always adventures,
Though we both played it coy.
Those earliest days together,
Were but prelude to a life of joy.

You whisked me away on ventures,
Traveling up and down the West Coast.
We stopped at every winery along the way,
Sampling Stag’s Leap Reserves was the utmost.

You confided me in me with certain secrets,
Very private things.
Like when you were back in college,
And had to work at Burger King.
(“Four pickles, college boy!”)

Our friends will remember that time,
While dancing in Barcelona,
Your alter ego came out,
And ”Drunk Dan” became our new favorite persona.

I remember learning of your awesome cooking skills,
That was a nice surprise.
A meal of grilled chicken and “Bachelor Potatoes”,
Confirmed you were a prize.

Whether playing sand volleyball,
Or wakeboarding on the lake,
You were always such a stud,
And made me proud to call you my beefcake.

We have played Euchre games with friends,
Late into the night hour,
With all of us wondering,
Why you would call trump without a left OR right bauer?

Then there was the way you proposed,
So romantic, certainly not mundane.
You hid my engagement ring,
In a Tiffany glass of Mumm Champagne.

You were always so supportive,
As any newlywed groom.
Like when I redecorated the your whole house
And created a Pumpkin Room.

You welcomed my cats into your heart,
And they showed you their love, too.
I can’t believe you didn’t know
A big hairball simply means, “I love you”.

Then there was the big shocker,
When we saw that first ultrasound.
Not one, not two, but three babies,
And both of our jaws hit the ground.

12,420 diapers later, (but who’s counting?)
And untold gallons of milk,
We have three gorgeous and healthy boys,
And they are truly their father’s ilk.

Since then, with our marriage,
Three loving children do we mentor.
And best of all, dear Dan,
We have family at our center.

The road has not always been smooth,
The fog so thick it was hard to see.
But through it all, with humor and love,
You have always been there with a “Y.P.” for me.

You’re such a loving, caring dad,
A rock in all the ways,
Holding family together,
You really do amaze.

From catching bats that fly in our house,
To cleaning the kitty pan each day.
You provide for all of us,
In so many different ways.

You’re kind and strong and happy,
And gentle most of all.
I think of all your antics,
Our kids think you’re just a ball.

Great father, husband, and friend,
All these things you are.
Dan – know with certainty,
For all of us, you’re a shining star.

Happy Birthday, Sweetie! I love you more than you will ever know ...

1 comment:

Nicole O'Dell said...

That's AWESOME! I love the cake and the poem was sooooo cool! I'll bet he was bowled over!