~Yes, she is a silly lady!~
One of the reasons I was so busy last week was we were busy with the celebrations for my Mom's 80th birthday! Yes, I know I am quite late getting this posted but hey! It WAS a busy week! ~~~~~~~~~~ Mom absolutely refused to let us throw her a big party (we did that for her 75th!) so we opted for get several get- togethers that were quieter but more in number! We had 2 family parties and one very nice dinner at a favorite little French place, "C'est Tout". Several of her friends and some of mine took her out for lunch and dinner as well. The photos below show her opening some gifts & blowing out her candles (One for every decade!) here at our house. We fixed a nice dinner for us and for my brother and his family. ~~~~~~~~~~ We sent her flowers and gave her a lovely stained glass piece for her family room window. She had admired it while with us in Yellow Springs, Ohio for the recent Street Fair. My brother gave her a DVD player to help her, as she says, "move into a new century!" Grace made her a sweet little quilted piece and put it in a frame and Dan gave her a new table for her porch. Below you will see a table in her home with her flowers and some of the many cards she received. There were countless telephone calls from her many friends around the country as well. She wanted to downplay it but hey. 80 is a big deal! She is a cancer survivor and gee. You will never hear her complain about her health at all. I went to Tennessee to be with her for her surgery and recovery and she had to be forced to rest and take it easy! The lady hates not to be busy! ~~~~~~~~~~ She gets around really well, is active in our her new church here, drives and does all her errands by herself. She has a wicked sense of humor, is a believer in life long learning (Yes, she was a school teacher for 35 years in the Dayton school system), a rabid supporter of Ohio State (her Alma Mater) University sports and knows every song from every Broadway musical ever produced. Heck, from what source did you think I learned all those songs? My Mama! ~~~~~~~~~~ My Mother sang, for years, in the Dayton Chorale, loved to travel & wrote long and often hysterical letters, poems and stories. After she and Dad retired, they moved to Middle Tennessee where she was quite active in her church, local politics and her women's groups. She served as President of so many things that I lost count years ago! ~~~~~~~~~~ She was, and is tireless when it comes to caring for her family, her yard and her home. She loved to garden and still fiddles with the small one she has at her condominium. She is a voracious reader, loves a good joke, movies, the Philharmonic, the theater, animals, her friends and her family. ~~~~~~~~~~ She has a mind like a steel trap, never forgets a birthday or anniversary, loves to pamper people, devours her morning paper and a cup (or 3) of steaming hot coffee! She always made every birthday and each holiday extra special. I truly believed in magic and miracles because my Mother made delightful things happen. ~~~~~~~~~~ My Mom is a confirmed chocoholic and never met an ice cream she did not love. She was recently asked if she liked sweets. She answered, "Do you think I got this way just from eating raw vegetables?" That's my Mom! ~~~~~~~~~~ She took such good care of my Father during his 4 years of illness, never complained and often went without sleep for days. During his last 7 months on this Earth, I was with her and him for much of it. She hated that I was away from Bill and Dan so much but it was where I wanted and needed to be. I will always be thankful that I was there with Dad but also that I had those days with Mom. She and I had wonderful talks during those months and, as sad as those days often were, we always found something to laugh about, smile over or for which to be grateful. ~~~~~~~~~~ She is resourceful, resilient and always tries to see the positive side of things. It gets harder for her now, as she ages, but even if the blues latch on to her, she quickly shakes them off and goes about her day. ~~~~~~~~~~ Just after she turned 75, she decided that not having seen Europe was a terrible crime. Mom and a neighbor flew to Rome and then cruised up and down the Mediterranean Sea. She was in 5 countries, including Italy and Greece during that 3 week vacation and then, last year, just 3 months after her cancer surgery, she embarked on another 3 week European cruise. This time she toured 8 countries, including Romania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Austria. That trip ended in Paris...not a bad place to finish anything right? Over the last 5 years she also took trips to Prince Edward Island, New England, The Canadian Rockies, New York City, Boston, Washington DC and several other areas. Many of these spots were places she and Dad took me years ago but she wanted to re- visit them and what fun she had doing so! Last Friday morning, she and a friend, left on a bus trip to Mackinac Island. She returned today, a little tired but happy! ~~~~~~~~~~ She taught me to work hard, not to complain about that work, to appreciate what you have, to love learning, reading, animals, music, movies and the theater. She and my Dad took me on trips every year to help instill in me a love of travel and appreciation for this nation. Mom took me on another trip every Spring Break and those usually included stops to places of great historical interest. My mother studies Botany and History and helped me to appreciate both the past and nature. She helped me learn not to complain about my health, what I do not have, how hard I work, or anything of this nature to anyone as there is always someone who has it worse! To always look at the bright side of things and that, no matter how dark it seems, there is ALWAYS a light shining somewhere. ~~~~~~~~~~ Lest you think I am being too much of a *Pollyanna* (Sorry dear Dawn!), and just what is wrong with that huh *grin*, my Mom is also stubborn (Something else I got from her!), full of opinions and worries too much. We are so much alike that we often bump heads and have been known to bicker a bit. Not fighting really, just a small tussle here and there (Did I mention just how stubborn we both are??) that always ends well. I have the utmost respect for my Mother and a heart full of love as well. Happy 80th Mom. Here's to 25 more! 30? If anyone can do it, SHE can. She hates this picture...I caught her chewing and she says she looks peeved...actually, she was quite happy that night! This was what she and I got that evening...a lovely Tilapia, cous cous and shrimp dinner. A delicious Caesar salad and handsome young waiters singing in French. Just what she ordered!