A few weeks ago we celebrated my mom's 80th birthday - it was a wonderful day filled with family, friends and fabulous food (if I do say so myself!) And doesn't my mom look amazing!?! Let's be real here, she looks amazing for 60! And super amazing for 70! But she is 80...and she is "work free," if you know what I mean! (Oh wait, that's not true...she has had some surgical enhancements, two new shoulders, two new knees and one foot!) Seriously folks, she is smokin' hot for 80!
There were so many things about mom's party that I loved, so I want to tell you about them. Let me back up a bit, before mom's birthday, the mister and I paid a visit to Melrose Market on Capitol Hill in Seattle, after watching Anthony Bourdain's show, The Layover, when he visited Seattle. Whew! That's a lot of commas! If you live in the Seattle area and haven't been to Melrose Market, then you must make a point of going - it's fabulous, well, for a foodie it is! We bought cheese at Calf and Kid, bacon at Rain Shadow Meats ($14.00 a pound for bacon!! It's not cheap but it's worth it!), flowers at Marigold and Mint and finally we ended up at Butter Home, a tiny little shop located upstairs where they had a little bowl filled with paper strawberries for $5.00 each! $5.00 for a paper strawberry! Holyschmoly! (I think nothing of spending $14 on a pound of bacon but $5 for a paper strawberry was beyond my financial accumen...hahaha, as if I have any accumen, financially or otherwise!)
The paper strawberry seemed like the perfect party favor for my mom's birthday - it was unique and colorful and it could hold one delicious hand-dipped chocolate truffle...since I couldn't allow myself to buy them, because as the mister likes to say, I'm penny wise and pound foolish...I came home and searched the internet for directions...and found them! And guess what? They are incredibly easy to make! (Just Google paper strawberry and you'll get dozens of sites for directions.)
Each of mom's birthday guests took home a paper strawberry filled with a perfect chocolate truffle...oh, they also took home one of those little booklets - my sister Carolynn made them, each booklet had 3 pictures of my mom inside, here, take a look:
Since almost everyone was family and/or very close friends, they all loved seeing those old pics of mom. My Aunt Tillie, who has known mom since they were both teenagers, was probably the only one at the party who remembers my mom looking like the pics. Aunt Tillie came with only one eyebrow on, because she forgot to put on the other and she said to me, "I was thinking of turning the car around when I saw myself in the rear-view mirror without my other eyebrow, but now that I see you and see you don't have any, well, I don't feel so bad!"
Here's a pic of my mom, removing her birthday candles after blowing them out, and Aunt Till...please do not look at her missing eyebrow! That's my mom's friend Doretta in the background...I don't know where everyone else is in this shot - we had a packed house! They must have been in the dining room loading their plates!
Don't you just love my mom's china? It's actually my china...sort of...when I registered for china before I was married, I picked that pattern...alas, I only got one place setting and it seemed foolish to keep it, so I returned it. When my mom bought herself this china years later, I was so happy! I love seeing it and using it - I do think the food tastes better on mom's china! Speaking of food, we dined on Margaux's Curried Chicken Sandwiches, Tomato Salad with Basil-Buttermilk Dressing, B-C-T-Deviled Eggs, Glazed Strawberries, plus a fabulous salad my sister-in-law Ellen brought (not shown) and for dessert we had the best Coconut Cake with Lemon Curd Filling in the world...it really is...and I know cake!
On the table are some of mom's presents...she got quite a haul! And there was one more thing...it was from the mister...every now and then he will completely surprise me - like when he told me he asked his friend George Lyons (his website is called Sounds Like Frank, and mom loves Frank!) to sing a birthday song for mom...I was so surprised I almost swallowed my tongue! The mister thought of that on his own! Fascinating, no? Anyway, George put his song to a video with pictures of mom...it was really, really nice! Mom loved it - almost enough to elevate the mister to the #1 son-in-law slot...but at the last second he was squeezed out by Scott, the do-gooder my sister married. Okay, long post...I'll end with a pic of my mom and three of her grand-daughters...Gabby, Gracie and Callie...with my sister photo-bombing in the background, it's her specialty!