Well, it was a hit! I’m talking about the 10-year-surprise-marriage-celebration that I threw for my husband a few weeks ago. It was the grand finale to the surprise he threw me on our actual 10th anniversary date, June 23, 2010. We were on Cape Cod, in Hyannisport, right by the Kennedy Compound. We visit there that same week in the summer, thanks to a good friend allowing us to crash his pad for free before his summer renters arrive. When I woke up that day in June, my friends, Joy and Brian Bell, were already gone for coffee. Which I thought was odd because they had just bought five pounds of coffee at Trader Joe’s to use on the trip. Davey, my handsome groom, asked me if I would like to take a morning walk. The avid exerciser that I am, I was dressed in my yoga pants and tennis shoes and ready to walk out the door in less than five minutes.
We walked our favorite route along the beach, which was about a mile from the house. It was windy and overcast, but it was a perfect morning along the water. We were chatting about Maria Shriever’s house, that we were passing at the time, when a strange man drove by slowly. I was sure he was a CIA agent, but he kept on going toward the housing development up ahead. A few minutes later he drove back toward us. He pulled over alongside the dirt road, that’s when I figured out what was going on.
Our friends had snuck out that morning to set up a makeshift tulle canopy, and a heart made out of seashells, as our standing place to renew our vowels. I was really surprised, and really happy, but, oh yes, there’s a but, I was wearing yoga pants. It wasn’t exactly how I had envisioned the big party we had talked about throwing for the past three years. But it was real, and it was raw, and it was just us (and the CIA guy.) It was one of our most precious and special moments that I will cherish forever. But no pictures please, lol.
So with that said, 5 ½ weeks ago, mid flight to southern California, I decided I would throw a surprise reception/party to show Davey just how much I love him. I actually planned the whole gig in about 4 days. All the guests, but about ten, thought they were coming to a black and white surprise 45th birthday party for Davey, which made the whole event even more special. This was a surprise for everyone. (And no I didn’t know J. Lo threw a surprise wedding until after I had this planned. Too funny.)
When Davey woke up Saturday morning, he thought we were going to brunch with friends. However, at 10:30 the doorbell rang, and his friend Rob showed up with an envelope with the #1 on it. He opened it and it read, “You’re not going to brunch, instead, you are about to embark on a scavenger hunt. Have fun with the boys today.” He looked at me and said, “this is odd, but okay,” kissed me and said he’d see me later. I’m pretty spontaneous so this isn’t out of character for me.
His “hunt” took him to a five-star resort for lunch, then to the shooting range, then to a tavern, then back to the Bell’s house, where the last letter and his new Hugo Boss suit awaited him. It read, “Put your James Bond suit on, and your James Bond attitude, sit back and have a glass of wine with your partner in crime (Brian Bell), and wait for further instructions.” At this point he thought he was coming to meet the ladies, and then out to dinner at a nice restaurant. I had bought him the suit three weeks before as his birthday gift, knowing this was in the works.
At 6:30, Brian looked at Davey and said, “Let’s go.” Without any hesitation, Davey followed Brian for two blocks by foot and he led him around to the back of our house, where the party awaited. The kids and I watched from above through my bathroom window. Ten minutes before Davey had arrived, my friend, Jennifer, announced to the crowd that this was actually a celebration of marriage, not a birthday party. It was well received, and made the air of the party change to beyond special.
Even though the cake had fallen over in my friends car on the trip down (it had to be taken back to Pitt for repairs, and we did lose a tier), and my flowers came in green and mushy, the event was stellar. The paper lanterns and use of white and black fabric turned our simple backyard into a magical scene. I had one friend come up to us and say the evening and the toast Davey and I made to each other inspired him to put more effort and time into his marriage. That was one of my biggest hopes for the night, to show our love and affection, and really share that with everyone. A lot of marriages go through a lot of changes, and if you don’t nuture and grow as a person and as a spouse, it’s a lot tougher to have a successful marriage. I truly have the man of my dreams, he’s always stepping up to the plate, in full suit. We’ve taken our marriage to newer heights this past year, but we are constantly putting into it.
The love and warmth that night from my friends will never be forgotten. So many of my neighbors and good friends pitched in to truly make it feel like it was my original wedding day all over again. So props to my A-team: Joy, Rachel, Jen, George, Brian, Rob, Belenda, Joe, Heather, Courtney, Julie, Carlee, and Kyle. I couldn’t have done it without you. Davey, I love you now and forever…..