“Happy birthday, Sonja!” Chandon California Brut Classic N.V.


Today, my wonderful wife Sonja turned… well, never mind the details. Today was Sonja’s birthday. I find her so curious, yet so admirable, in that she almost always wants for the simplistic joys in life, and seems to appreciate most the things she already has. She’s a homebody who can enjoy herself almost no matter what she’s doing.  I’m not like that, but I hope that maybe one day, with enough time spent in her presence, I will learn to be. Until then, I can but be in awe of my amazing wife who, when asked what she would like for her birthday, responded with “To sleep in, then maybe go buy a pair of pants. Whatever, so long as I get to be with my family.” When it comes my turn to be asked that question, I’m going to tell her I want to go to Bordeaux.

To honor her request, I stole the baby monitor this morning and, when the kids began to stir, gathered them up quietly, gave them each a cup of water and a bowl of cheerios, and  then put them in the jogging stroller. We ran five miles together, then walked through the UNMC campus to get to Bob’s doughnuts, where daddy decided that a dozen should suffice in feeding the four of us.


Back at home, Sonja was awake and looking refreshed, so we sat out on the patio drinking coffee and sparkling wine, eating our doughnuts, and enjoying our kids. I had to agree that it was the perfect morning. The Chandon Brut NV from California was something I picked up on sale recently, but paired with a well-brewed Nespresso and a sugary doughnut, this dry sparkler was just about perfect. After all of this excitement I needed a nap, but Sonja was eager to go shopping and, well, hey, it was her birthday wish.

We spent most of the day out at the outlet mall, and while it wouldn’t be my choice of ways to kill an afternoon, I did manage to find a new pair of shoes and a few shirts that fit me. Sonja found the elusive pants she was seeking and bought a few other things for work as well. “Your kids are so well behaved,” we kept hearing of the munchkins who rested quietly in the tandem stroller. Looking down at our perfect little imps, I again understood what was so great about just doing the normal stuff all day. Sonja is pretty wise, if I’m being honest.

The evening concluded with a dinner of mushroom and swiss cheeseburgers, sweet potato tater tots, and cake, all Sonja’s choice. Titus and Zooey sang “Happy birthday” to Sonja, butchering the words and skipping half the lines, but shouting it emphatically, and once again it was pretty easy to see how this was a perfect way to spend a day. Then Titus helped momma blow out the candle on her cake, and after some prompting was able to tell us that he’ll turn three next month. Who needs Bordeaux?  Maybe I’ll ask to go shopping for pants with my family next year, too. (But probably not.)

Cheers to those among us who are wise enough to appreciate the little things, and to my beautiful Sonja on her birthday,



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