Ethel’s 80th

gathered at the barn for ‘stingers’, our featured cocktail
Ethel, peanut, me looking at old family photos
Queen City Strings
absolutely love these two, Ethan and husband
the gang’s all here

Birthdays in our world are most often celebrated with a scratch baked cake and dinner at home with family and maybe a few close friends. Mom turns eighty late August, and we gathered for a barn dinner last week to celebrate as my dear sister and her family were visiting from San Francisco, CA. 

seating for sixteen
birthday girl place card and menu

It’s not often we’re all together, she’s got a full life with her huge west coast event design company, Radeff Design Studios, managing fetes for thousands. The two of us together pulled off a home cooked five course seated dinner, country-side, and it was brilliant. 

Tracy ordered rentals, booked the string quartet, arranged flowers, designed graphics, and basically planned the menu. I came in at the eleventh hour and baked a cake and cooked off the entrée, a little well done. 

Mom really started the two of us on this party-planning journey, even while holding down a full-time job back when that was really not the thing she would set the table, make fancy food, and have us put on our best clothes to come together and break bread. That’s a gift that continually gives, the desire to feed and care for others, making meals memorable and soul stirring, whether it be scrambled eggs with toast and homemade jam or a wedding celebration for 200+.

happy birthday dear mom

There were sixteen of us that night, my sister and I with our men, her eight grandchildren, and two life-long young friends. Most of us took turns raising a glass and offering a toast, telling stories with love and affection of fun and crazy times. An 80thbirthday is reason to celebrate. Mom, you are beautiful, independent, curious, elegant, and ever-evolving. Happy Birthday and wishing you many returns of the day. 

Maxwell toasting Ethel
birthday bouquet from Lexi
the table is set
menu details
seated dinner for sixteen, how we celebrate birthdays

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