Destination Imagination & my birthday & other updates

David headed off to the Netherlands for a business trip last Tuesday (March 3) and got home on Monday (March 9). When I came home on Tuesday, I found a small note (filled with love!) from him in one of my plant’s pots. I then discovered them all around the apartment. The one I found the night before he got back was kind of gross. He put it in a jar of my hand cream…it was soggy. I was so busy while he was gone, and am still very overwhelmed with how much work I have, that it wasn’t too lonely. I didn’t quite have time to realize how much I missed him until he got back.

Saturday (March 7) was my first DI meet of the season, and it was also my birthday. When I arrived at the tournament, another DI board member gave me a flashing pin that said in big letters, “It’s my birthday!” I was a Head Appraiser (Regional Challenge Master) and in charge of a team of amazing appraisers, many who I knew from past years. I really couldn’t have asked for a better way to celebrate my birthday. I can’t explain how much I love the people who volunteer for this program–they are a wacky, fun, passionate, kid-loving, creative bunch.

I’ve never felt more popular; all day kids (and adults!) were running up to me and singing or wishing me a happy birthday. There was a team of first graders who I was talking to before they performed. One young boy politely asked, “Why does your pin say ‘It’s my birthday!’? I said, “Because it’s my birthday!” Their eyes bulged, as if this was totally shocking news, and then they became very excited. Another elementary school team asked me how old I was turning. When I told them I was 24, a boy who was probably around eight years old, and was wearing jeans and a white teacher, and had his hair gelled for their performance, exclaimed, “You don’t look ANYWHERE near that old!!” I told him that I get that a lot.

At closing ceremonies, the tournament director had the entire crowd sing happy birthday to me. It was such a long day (my challenge had 18 teams!), but it flew by. I had almost forgotten how energizing tournaments can be. It’s absolutely amazing to see what kids are capable of creating on their own. I always feel so much gratitude that I get to be a part of this amazing community. I have met so many friends through this program.

After a recent DI appraiser training that I helped lead, I looked through some photos of my teams. I’ll just share one photo right now:

     This is my team member, Bob, inside our tree, with a monkey puppet we created. This was my junior year in high school.

This is my team member, Bob, inside our tree, with a monkey puppet we created. This was my junior year in high school.

Both my parents were at the tournament (my dad as a board member, my mom as an appraiser), but we celebrated my birthday on Sunday, at my grandfather’s. My dad made vegetable lasagna (I will get his recipe and feature it here soon, I hope) and we had a chocolate raspberry cake for dessert.

This is my cake. I literally spent about 10 minutes laughing before blowing out my candle. (Evidently there was a miscommunication about birthday candles.)

Grandpa and me!

I am so touched by all of the cards & emails & nice things people have sent me for my birthday. Thank you! I am truly lucky.

1 Response to “Destination Imagination & my birthday & other updates”

  1. Sarah Says:

    I’m glad to hear that you had such a wonderful birthday! I wish that I could have been there to celebrate with you. I love you and miss you, super sister!