The participation calls for sharing one of a few things, mostly having to do with birthdays and birthday parties. The best thing I could think of to share was the small but faublous surprise party I threw for my Grandma, Marjorie. She is everything and nothing you expect in a grandma. She's the best cook (will I ever make homemade chicken and noodles like her?), she always has cookies in the cookie jar and is full of hugs and laughter. She's also super thin and fiesty and never wears funny hats or housedresses and can complain about the state of things until my cell phone battery goes dead. She is the proud matriarch of two children, six grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren. Sadly, we don't all get together for holidays anymore, so Grandma rarely gets to see us all together.
Well last August, Grandma's birthday happened to fall on a Saturday, and it happened to be her 80th. So I sent out some invites, requested RSVPs and planned a small backyard BBQ/birthday party for the above-mentioned family. The day before B-day I still hadn't heard from anyone, so I assumed the party would consist of my parents, my boyfriend and myself, but we were going to party either way. The day arrived, and Merv and I, along with my dad, set up the backyard with the new picnic table we had gotten for a gift and had the cake, candles and goodies set up for the surprise. Mom had Grandma occupied at her favorite place for coffee and conversation, the Rainbow Cafe.
In the process of bringing plates to the backyard, Merv tells me to look outside, because he thinks some family members had pulled up. Indeed, when I looked outside I saw three car loads of an uncle, cousins and second cousins. In fact there was only one grandkid + family missing. I almost cried I was so happy to see them all. In fact, I think I may have been more surprised than Grandma. And she was surprised! It was a beautiful afternoon followed by an impromptu fish-fry, which just happens to be one of Grandma's favorite things. All in all, I'd say it's the best birthday party I've ever thrown together. And it couldn't have been done for a more deserving woman.