About a month ago Auntie Diane asked me if the boys would like to spend the day at Cedar Point. Uhhh... no brainer! Of course they would! She offered to take them and I encouraged her to give it to them as a birthday present. We planned and plotted, as all good gift givers do, gleefully knowing they'd love the day once it arrived. But we thought that perhaps they'd get more rest and be better prepared for the day if they didn't know about it before hand. And so "Yoga" was born.
Auntie Diane creatively typed up a certificate for Matthew, cut it down to the size of a cd case where she placed it, wrapping it so he'd suspect that indeed he was opening up some music. He opened, and then read, the note: Happy Birthday Matthew! You are cordially invited with your brother Jonathan to experience a day of peace and tranquility with your loving Aunt Diane! The date and time of this calming adventure will be a surprise! More details to follow!
As they picked apart this message, both Matthew and Jonathan thought it meant they'd have to wait until Jonathan's birthday in mid-September to get more info. We just laughed. Then they started in with questions about what it all really meant and "Yoga" seemed to fit the peace and tranquility comment. So Yoga it became. Both boys adamently said they weren't doing yoga. We just laughed some more. Then Jonathan decided Auntie Diane really wasn't that mean, was she? I think Matthew suspected all along that it wasn't yoga specifically, but he couldn't place it, either. So the questions began.
My standard statement was that they'd know when the time was right. For each guess and each thought expressed I'd state that they'd know when the time was right. It became a monotone statement after awhile, but sometimes it was hard not to laugh. Like the time Diane told them they'd need to practice their 'Ummmms', which she said with her hands folded in front of her in a typical pose. Or when she told them they could get ready by standing on one foot with the other leg raised at a 90 degree angle - another typical pose. Eventually, yoga became a litany throughout our day. Even Don's workplace unknowingly got in to the act when they sent through the exercise hint for the day mentioning the benefits of yoga. THAT was a gem!
Finally, after weeks of baiting them, and a few days of yoga talk, Auntie Diane called me to plan for their day. Wednesday would be "The Day". Don and I decided that we needed to get them in to bed early to make up for the lack of sleep the night before when a friend slept over, so we opted to tell them that Wednesday would be "Yoga Day" and gave them what that really meant as far as bedtimes and our Wednesday morning schedule. This little announcement sent them in to a flurry of guessing games.
Matthew was sure that "Yoga" stood for something and he tried his hardest to sound it out and make it represent something. Then he gave up and started guessing all sorts of things from a day at Swings-N-Things to swimming to Geauga Lake. After all, yoga and Geauga kinda sounded the same, didn't they? Deep down I think Jonathan thought yoga was a possibility but he hoped not. He would have been happy with a day at the pool but he knew that wasn't it as soon as we got in the car without our suits. Oh how much fun it is to drive them crazy with clues!
On the trip up to Auntie Diane's this morning I gave them a few more clues. Statements like "Since there would be so many people at yoga, Sonny was going with them just in case another adult was needed." and "You won't be able to take your hat or wallet as you might lose them while yoga-ing" didn't help them any with their ultimate destination. Diane had prepared cards for them to open when they were about half way there that would finally answer all of their questions. I can't wait to see how that went!
Right now they've been at the park for a few hours and I'm hoping they are having a great time. They will be delivered back home safe and sound, and hopefully exhausted before 9. I'm sure they'll have stories to tell, and they'll remind me that they guessed Cedar Point once or twice in the weeks leading up to today. And I know they'll remember this present for a good long time.
Thank you Auntie Diane for loving them so much. Thank you for taking time out of your vacation to spend the day with them doing something you know they'd enjoy. Thank you for being you.