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An embarrassment of riches: Week of Joe–2015 (cards)

Posted by joeabbott on December 18, 2015

OK, let’s get a couple things straight here. First, Week of Joe (or WoJ) is the week of my birthday during which Suzanne showers me with attention, special meals, and gifts. As empty-nesters … wait, we’ve been the only two in the nest here ever … we indulge in an entire week around our birthdays just soaking in a bit of, well, indulgence. Make that indulgences.

Secondly, while WoJ was over a month ago, it’s been the sheer magnitude of documenting all of these goodies that’s taking so long. I haven’t needed a month to get pics and write up descriptions … I’ve needed the month to know where to start! There’s a buncha goodies here so, let’s look at the cards I got from Suzy today (I also received a number from my family … for which I’m ever indebted) and we’ll take a look at gifts later.

The week

The hard part about WoJ this year was that I didn’t plan on taking any time off work. Usually we’ll take the week off, but I was so looking forward to having all of December off, that I opted to work that week. The other hard part about the week is that I was feeling a bit under the weather: lots of churn at work, busy prepping for being away all the next month, and just being a bit low caused for a melancholy mood on my part.

Countering that was Suzy’s incredible efforts … and my moodiness can’t hold a candle to Suzy putting on a killer table and having gifts for me every day! A bad mood can’t hope to stand against a force like that!

And so, over ribs, teriyaki chicken, delicious scalloped potatoes, and all manner of other comfort foods, I got home from work and entered a pampering zone!

The cards

A staple of the WoJ is a card and gift each day. Yes, exorbitant but I recommend you try it. The cards really stand out.

First, they always come in a sweet little envelope with my name and a little heart. Second, the cards usually have a theme and for the last couple years she’s absolutely killed it by choosing a Lord of the Rings theme! And finally, the getting of gifts involve the smallest of treasure hunts!


I’d share the details of the little notes inside each card, but everyone would be jealous and I’d feel like I as just showing off. Well, showing off even more. Suffice it to say, the cards themselves are the real gift of the day and what I really look forward to enjoying during the WoJ.

The treasure hunt

We haven’t always done a treasure hunt but in the last couple they’ve become the standard practice. They’re a lot of fun and Suzy gets to tell whether or not I’m paying attention to how the house is being kept and decorated. I like to pride myself in acing all of these tests but I will admit to relying on luck every now and then.

And, of course, one of the pictures will always include our companion-cat, Trasper … who never seems to like being left out of any of the family doings.


The picture on the top left is a close-up of our shower curtain in the guest bathroom, next to it is a picture of a couple of boxes stored in the sliding cabinets I made a few years back; then there’s the edge of a small divan on lighted rug that are in her home office, and the top row is finished out by a close-up snap of a table I made this past summer with a “secret” compartment. Ok, the top comes off … not much of a secret.

The second row contains a close-up shot of some books on our bookshelf (no surprise, books about Tolkien were chosen) and a photo of us taken at my 40th birthday back in Minnesota at a restaurant. I was allowed to wear a crown that day and I just LOVED IT.

The final picture is either some dusting/clean-up towels we keep in a shelf in our laundry room or Trimble’s secret napping spot … oh, wait … those are the same thing. Yup, our cat will leap from the floor to the top of the dryer and into a shelf containing towels used for cleaning up spills. If the door to that cupboard is closed, he’ll either find a way to open it or start to yowl. The first time he did this, we were shocked and surprised: Trimble is not a cat to make a lot of noise under most any circumstance so a yowl … well, it caused a bit of panic. Now, however, it’s pretty normal to hear him call out and just to get up and open the door to his shelf.

Come back later for gifts

One of my observations about my own posts is that they get too darned long. I don’t know many folks who sit down the to catch up and look for a long, windy, one-sided affair, so I’ll stop here. The cards and notes and the hunt, they really are the main joy of the WoJ. But, I will detail the many goodies I got that week because they were all appreciated.

Thanks for dropping in.


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