We’ve been a bit all over, and Bill had another time around the sun a few weeks ago. Peyton and I made him a box cake in Boston, MA, on a Sunday afternoon, a day after we flew home from London. Bill and I flew home to Buffalo, NY, on his actual birthday, Monday, and while on the flight, I asked him what he wanted for dinner and what kind of cake he might like, and he said he had to think about it yet just before we landed he told ‘steaks on the grill and carrot cake.’
It was cold and snowy in Buffalo. I asked him if he wanted to grill outside, and he said, ‘Yes, that’s how I want to remember turning 69,’ so it was steaks on the grill in winter and carrot cake for dessert.
Booie picked us up at about 2 pm, and once home, I changed my coat and headed for the grocery. There are ten of us now when we have a local family dinner, and I had supplies to procure. The smaller the market, the quicker it is. Our cooperative has everything you might need to put a nice celebratory meal together.
We had nothing in the house as we had been gone for ten days. I picked up the usuals and added steaks, potatoes, broccolini, store-prepared garlic bread, spinach artichoke dip supplies, carrot cake supplies, ice cream, fresh flowers, and birthday candles. I hurried home and hit the kitchen; the family was due at 6 pm.
Focus, focus, focus, that’s what was needed to pull this off. Also, Lexi set the table, Maxwell peeled the potatoes, and Booie frosted the cake. This was a last-minute get-together. I had texted them all that morning, and they all showed up, each with a gift and a helping hand.
It was an effort, of course. Everything worthwhile is an effort. Every meal I make and serve helps make me a better home cook, and every meal brings our family together. They know when I text or call, there will be soup to nuts, which makes them want to come. It’s really what I most live for, bringing the family together around the table.
Bill and Ethan got their time together outside, cooking steaks on the grill in winter. That is what he wanted, and that’s what we did.