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This time last year I started planning to surprise my husband.

I surprised my husband by not throwing a party! He wanted to relax and unwind that day. It was a tough call. What do I do to make it special for him?

He didn’t want to party or go out with friends.

We were on a tight budget so I knew I could not buy him a decent gift, one that he will love anyway.

So I planned and worked out a treasure hunt!

Why I decided on a treasure hunt?

1.   He loved games

2.   It involved only one couple friend and us. So limited people

3.   Low cost

4.   Complete pampering the whole day (it was luckily a weekend!)

5.   It surrounded around everything he loves!

Once I made my decision I started figuring out how I could pull it off.

This is what I did!

First we planned to bring in his birthday on Saturday night by going out for dinner at a good restaurant and his favourite cuisine. This was all he knew. According to him this was all we were planning.

Straight after we went to stay the night at his parents place. He likes to share at least one meal with them on his birthday. So I decided Breakfast!

We woke up, had a hearty breakfast and chatted with family. It was a good start to the day.

Then I told him I wanted to pamper him so we must leave. I had a driver that day so he could focus on solving the puzzles.

As we sat in the car I handed him an envelope. In it was a puzzle that went something like this:

CLUE 1 

My jewels are safe here

To you it is very dear

You don’t like to lend

It makes you a legend!

 

Drive, skip or hop

But stop at a shop

Don’t you think too much

It’s a road that links as such

 

On your brakes put a stopper

And become a shopper

Buy it just right

Get the next clue, you might!

 

Can you guess the answer?

In the first stanza I tell him what he needs to buy.

In the second stanza I tell him which road he has to take.

In the third stanza I tell him which store he has to go in.

First one is fairly simple by the first 2 lines itself, the fourth line is written on a boxer I gifted him some time back. He knew instantly he has to buy boxers. Now where? The fourth line that says “links” led him straight to linking road! The last stanza was also fairly simple – “stopper” and “shopper” took him to “Shopper’s Stop” on linking road and there he bought a pair of boxer shorts (that I of course paid for!) Cheap and useful!!!

Once the boxers were in his hand, we were in the car I gave the next clue.

CLUE 2

 

Time to wind down

And not to make a – – – n –

Shut your – – – –

And say your byes

 

Time to – – -a-

To the max

You love it more

When you’re – o – –

 

It takes away all your – – – es

You’ll get one of your clues

Right where we once – – – t

You’ll be all content

 

Can you guess?

Fill in the blanks were fairly simple. I wrote down this poem for him and made it slightly tougher than the first clue. I kept consistently making it slightly tougher and then giving breaks in the middle of each one. After all it wasn’t to be stressful it was supposed to be fun!!

The poem when filled with blanks looks like this:

Time to wind down

And not to make a sound

Shut your eyes

And say your byes

Time to relax

To the max

You love it more

When you’re sore

It takes away all your blues

You’ll get one of your clues

Right where we once went

You’ll be all content

Now can You guess?

Well its supposed to be personal… I took him for a massage! We both love massages and when we have to celebrate something this is how we do! So he would have guessed it right away.

He even guessed which place very easily.

We were then on the way!!!

We both went on a nice long massage.

Before I went in I asked the receptionist if while bringing us the tea and fruits at the end she could also bring an envelope along for him. And she very kindly agreed.

He was to solve it inside the spa while I pay the bill.

CLUE 3

 

FIGURE ME OUT!!!

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This one I am afraid you will not be able to figure out all. It is completely personalized. And the code is also tough. He took sometime to solve this one as well. As I stated earlier each clue would get tougher with some easy ones mixed in. Before I get down the above clue let me tell you how I formed the entire hunt…

Each clue would be solved and accompanied with it would be a reward. Like the first one was accompanied with a gift of Boxer shorts, the second one with a massage, the third one now was where I had entailed the help of a friend. I was running out of reward ideas. So hear above in the numbers is hidden the building name of their residence. The massage parlour is on the same road. And our car was parked right outside the friends house. The idea was to take him in to meet them. We all have a drink. They give him another clue. Where he finds another one! Sounds complicated? Well it wasn’t! it was fairly simple actually. And relaxed.

IMG_0028

So let me get back to the above clue.

These are digits on your phone leading to the building name. He took a while to figure. And to ease his pressure I did give him the hints of location (that we were very close) and about a mobile.

Once he figured the numbers out alphabetically he knew we had to go to our friends house.

There he was obviously greeted with a warm hug and a drink, some gifts they had got for him along with a clue that was handed to him.

IMG_0131


CLUE 4

 

 

I MOVE VERTICAL

I MOVE HORIZONTAL

I MOVE DIAGONAL

ITS ALL NUMERICAL

 

FIVE IS MY FAVOURITE NUMBER

FOUR IS ALSO MY FAVOURITE NUMBER

I HAVE EYES BUT ONE SHUT

I HAVE BOTH OPEN EYES ALSO BUT

 

WHAT AM I?

 
Now each clue that I was giving was extremely personal and relevant to him. The above is a description of a game he liked playing. “Sequence”. My friends owned this game. He would find the other clue in this board game. And as a reward he would get another drink of his choice!

sequence

The next clue was the hardest. I allowed him to entail the help of my friends because now he was down a couple of drinks and was in no mood to work at it!

*suggestion – if you’re planning something similar make sure at this point give him the easiest clue!

CLUE 5

FullSizeRender-2

 

(A shabby picture but this is the only recreation of the actual puzzle i could do!!)

Along with this I gave him a picture of my two babies (pugs) that he totally adores and this ransom note:

BEWARE…

 

YOUR BABIES HAVE BEEN KIDNAPPED

 

IF YOU DON’T WANT TO DIE BY THEIR SILLY PAWS THEN DON’T MAKE THEM WAIT FOR LONG….

(i did try my hand at cutting magazine articles in bright colours but eventually just typed on my laptop in coloured font and printed it!!)

Now he knew this was to find a location for them, that they were waiting for him somewhere!

The above clue is extremely tough. I looked it up online. And used an online version to make this. But he didn’t crack it. He just guessed it!! At this time he was in no mood for working his brain!!!

I changed the letters of the alphabet to stand for something else all together. and gave him clues. in hindsight i realise that it was an extremely tough clue. My suggestion to everyone would be to keep it simpler.

Answer: We are at the beach

We live very close to the beach. So I had arranged for dodo fifi (our pug children) to wait on the beach with balloons and a ball! He spent sometime with them there. And thoroughly enjoy it.

treasure hunt IMG_2557

One of them had an envelope stuck on them! He had thought this was the end but it very much wasn’t!

CLUE 6

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

STILL SOME MORE TO GO…

YOU WILL SOON BE REWARDED FOR YOUR EFFORTS!!

TO GET THE NEXT CLUE….

STRAIGHT

RIGHT

LEFT

UP

RIGHT

STRAIGHT

RIGHT

STRAIGHT

RIGHT

STRAIGHT

RIGHT

LEFT

This was direction to our house leading into the living room!! He obviously knew this so he laughed at it all, thrilled with the way the day had turned out so far.

In the living room right on the table was another envelope. (Don’t worry friends this hunt is actually nearing its end!)

CLUE 7

You come to me every morning

When troubles you her snoring

You love to make

She loves to bake

 

Come to the spot

And take what she has got!!!

Can you guess?

Of course this one is fairly simple. I had kept some munchies and a bottle of bubbly in the kitchen and a set of menu’s. I hadn’t had the time to make something special for him! It had been a busy day!!

We ordered food. And enjoyed the bubbly!

After this point – well it’s really none of your business!!!

The question is … I did this last year. What this year? It is a month away and I am wondering why do I do this? I have raised his expectations!!! Well honestly I love pampering him!

Do you have some fun creative ways to celebrate a birthday? Please do share. And did you like what I did last year as a surprise?

I thought it was quirky! Did you?

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