Our family is blessed to still have our mom, who turned ninety-five years old this month. Mom is still beautiful, witty, smart, reads several books a week, and knows her iPad well. We gathered recently in California for her birthday. This year, she wanted a smaller party compared to some in the past. My brother grilled ribs and several of us made the side dishes. Mom specifically requested corn-on-the-cob (she’s originally a Midwest girl) and a peach cobbler. I made the cobbler but turns out I should have made a couple more. It went faster than I thought it would, plus mom did not have the leftovers she was hoping for. There was also a beautiful lemon mousse cake, but we did not want to put 95 candles and ruin the cake, so my girls came up with the idea to buy a ready-made angel food cake just for the purpose of the candles. Well… little did we know that the lit cake would cause the smoke alarm to go off and almost singe my brother Ken’s hair. However, it didn’t seem to faze our fearless mom at all. Ken carried the cake in, had to hold it at arm’s length, set it down in front of mom and she proceeded to blow out all the candles as the smoke alarm blasted.
The cake took a beating and got tossed. We had no idea it would cause such a flame.
We had such a great time with lots of good food, happy conversations, opening gifts, and especially enjoying all of mom’s stories. We asked her to tell us stories or memories from every decade of her full and wonderful life, sometimes challenging, but she always was a tower of strength for everyone. Mom is our rock.
The day before the birthday party, we decided to add another party but this one was to be a surprise. Our daughter Kara is expecting her first baby and it seemed a good time to have a surprise baby shower since all the family was there. Daughter Kristina kept Kara busy until she knew we were ready for them to show up. Kara was definitely surprised and couldn’t believe we put it all together at the last minute and hid all the food.
It was a weekend we will never forget, with several generations and another one on the way. Here was mom’s first peek at her great-grandchild.
We don’t know if it’s a boy or girl because Kara and her husband want it to be a surprise. All we know for sure is, baby has Kara’s little button nose!
The weekend was just the beginning of what will be coming up in the new year- a new baby and a 96th birthday party. And maybe not a cake that could burn down the house. Maybe just another couple of peach cobblers.