Happy (belated) Birthday to this guy

I made him a Texas sheet cake and everything (if you don’t know what a Texas sheet cake is, you need the recipe — let me know and I’ll post it).

Matt turned 36 on Saturday.  36.  Doesn’t that sound dangerously close to 40?  I’d tease him about being so much older than me, but I’m pretty sure he’s going to age better, so it would be kind of pointless.

The birthday celebration started about 10 am, when I sent him to the wrong soccer game.  But, don’t worry, it got better.

Matt’s very kind and lovely mother volunteered to take our children to lunch so that we could have a “birthday date.”  While they were tearing up the play-place at Carl’s Jr., we had yummy Aziago Cheese bagels and Wild Rice Soup (if you are ever going to be in Sandy, Utah, you really need to have an Aziago Cheese bagel at a place called Rich’s Bagels — the Einstein’s version is a pale imitation).  Then we went to Hairspray.  Would I recommend Hairspray?

Let me say, first of all, that Matt didn’t realize it was a musical until we got there (or possibly just before, but he was already committed).  Let me say, second of all, that I would have been in love with this movie when I was 13, and probably would have seen it six times, or possibly purchased the video (we didn’t have DVDs when I was 13, remember?).  All that said, Hairspray was a hoot, and you should go to it with someone you enjoy laughing with.  John Travolta was at times disturbing (he plays the fat mom, if you haven’t been paying attention to the advertising), but also pretty darn hilarious.  We thought one of the funniest things was Christopher Walken, who we think of as a scary bad guy (right?), as the wacky, joke-shop owning dad.  There’s a thing about a whoopie cushion (actually, a whole pile of whoopie cushions) that had Matt lauging out loud.  If you’ve seen this movie, I’d love to hear what you thought.  Otherwise, I say go see it, but be expecting big old-fashioned musical numbers and silly humor.

The birthday celebration continued with a family dinner at Chili’s (we ate out twice in one day?  talk about living large…), carefully chosen because of food enjoyable for the adults (Matt recommends the chicken soft tacos), and a thorough childrens’ menu for our picky offspring.  Funniest moment?  On the way there, Jon was crying and whining, “I hate chili!”  He settled right down when we assured him they had both grilled cheese and french fries.  Our children are on the American Heart Association diet, can you tell?

You may remember that I was a little choosy about how I wanted to spend my birthday.  Matt seemed happy with his, but I did commit a faux pas that I always accuse him of:  I bought his gifts last-minute and at the grocery store.  He was pleased with my anti-oxidant-rich selections, including pomegranate juice, flavored almonds, 85% cocoa dark chocolate, and acai juice.  When he gets home today, he’ll find that my mother has shown me up — she filled the entire priority mail flat-rate box with dark chocolate, including several Harry and David selections.

Love you, Matt.  You think you really love a person, and then they father a bunch of children, and you find out how much you really love and appreciate who they are…


18 thoughts on “Happy (belated) Birthday to this guy

  1. Marla

    Happy Birthday Matt! You’re one of the greats and one of the few people that make me roll on the floor with laughter. Also, you still appear about 23.

  2. Andrew

    Matt’s a fantastic older brother and I feel very lucky he’s been a part of my life. I tease him as well for being old, but I’m turning 33 next month (the perfect age) and I’m not that far behind.

    As for “Hairspray,” I haven’t seen it yet, but I saw a preview that included a scene from the movie in which John Travolta was dancing with Christopher Walken. Very funny. I have to say that my favorite character played by Chistopher Walken is from the movie “Blast from the Past.” His portrayal of an eccentric, paranoid and brilliant father who mistakenly sequesters his family in a bomb shelter for 30 years is laugh-out-loud funny.

  3. Andrea

    So, his presents…were you still teasing him about his age? They sound good to me, but I have always been old in my head.
    We should get your kids together with Maddy. We ate at Wendy’s last week and she was eating her chicken nuggets with the look of a pregnant woman satisfying a serious craving. I looked at her and said, girlfriend, when you are off the steroids, we are going to have to retrain your tastebuds.
    I am glad you guys got some time off. That’s the best thing.

  4. liz Post author

    Not teasing him about his age. He is very interested in “superfoods” and loves dark chocolate and pure juices. I usually don’t buy them because they’re so expensive, so that’s why it’s a special “birthday treat” when I do.

  5. Christina

    Happy Birthday, Matt! We think you’re great!

    Jason loves dark chocolate, too. They have some organic dark chocolate hot chocolate mix at our grocery store and it is so good! We would have shared with you while you were here if we knew about your love of health foods! A little dark chocolate everyday is good for you, right?

  6. Vicki

    I LOVED your post! It sounds like a very fun birthday celebration. The kids and I had a great time at Carls Jr. Matt has been a terrific son and I love him dearly!

  7. robinbl

    I’m afraid I must claim ignorance as to the difference between Texas Sheet Cake and regular sheet cake. Guess I’ll have to make it and find out! Anyway, glad Matt had a great birthday. Maybe it’s just me, but he looks kind of surprised in that picture, like he can’t believe he’s really 36! Anything in the thirties still doesn’t sound “old” to me…it just reminds that we are indeed “grown-ups”, although that still feels strange sometimes!

  8. sillyjillybean

    I remember when I met Matt & Liz for the first time as the “girlfriend” of Liz’s brother. Matt was his usual kind, sweet self who truly was interested in who I was and what I was about. My opinion is still the same 11 years later. He is an amazing man, amazing father, amazing husband and an amazing servant of the Lord. Happy Birthday old man.

  9. danielle

    Oh this was so funny.

    I can’t believe he is 36! I think the anti-oxidant rich foods are working. He looks so young! I love that his birthday presents came from the grocery store! once I got Trav a bunch of stuff (think hand sanitizer and mints) from 7-11 on Christmas eve because at the last minute I realized I hadn’t gotten him enough stuff. I think Matt is probably just grateful to have such a hard-working fabulous wife and beautiful family. I am also glad that you feed your kids grilled cheese and french fries. I worry about what kind for things I will feed my kids (that they won’t be, you know, 100% organic…or balanced). Do you remember when there was some kind of rumor going around that your dad wouldn’t let you guys eat cheese? Funny. Anyway, I am glad you have such a great husband. Happy Birthday Matt! (And for the record I really do believe in Global Warming :))

  10. Katie

    Okay- I could have sworn I saw B-day boy on Saturday across from where I was sitting at a soccer game- and I kept thinking.. How do I know Him? And it is from your blog. I didn’t want to freak him out and say anything- but you were nowhere around…(I would have said something… although – I have never met you in person!) anyways- thought it was funny! Maybe- one of these days I will run into you!

  11. liz Post author

    Katie–Was it a soccer game for 4/5 year-olds? I wasn’t there that day because we had two back-to-back games at different schools. Next time you see him, tell him, “I read your wife’s blog.” He’ll think it’s hilarious. I’ll be at that same field at 10 AM this Saturday, if you want to watch for me. Small world. :)

  12. Liz

    Liz, I love you too. Thanks all for the birthday wishes. At 36, I’m only 4 years away from being legally protected from age discrimination in employment. Yahoo. (You can tell I’m an HR guy with a warped sense of humor.)


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