>A Birthday to Remember

>It doesn’t get much better than this: today’s my birthday, and I woke up to God’s gift—a gorgeous and rare (for Memphis) winter wonderland with all the perks (beauty) and none of the minuses (loss electricity, frozen roads, trees crashing into houses, etc.) My sweet hubby opened the blinds so I could enjoy the scene, just as he brought me coffee in bed, and followed that with breakfast. (He even cleaned up.) Here he is, retrieving the newspaper from our snowed-over driveway. Hopefully our crapes survived the spring freeze, and our Japanese Magnolia, whose buds had begun to peek out!

We took pictures out front before the snow began to melt… me with Oreo, (my cat) who was a little less excited about the snow, to say the least!

A cozy morning at home with a few well-wishers, cards and gifts arriving via mail and in person. Here’s my favorite birthday card of the bunch, from my friend Nancy McGee. I laughed so hard at that one… and especially the jar on the woman’s dressing table that’s labled, “Cheeks So Tight”… and I’ll laugh all the way to JJill to spend the gift card she gave me! I’ll have to get something to match the gorgeous JJill necklace that Pamela gave me. (Ya’ think these people know me?) My other friend named Nancy gave me a Starbucks gift card… she’s the friend I actually met at Starbucks several years ago!

Getting ready to drive up to Ripley, Tennessee to my Goddaughter, Stacy’s baby shower at her cousin’s house, I pull on my Uggs, which Claire just returned yesterday. I loaned them to her for her trip to Amsterdam… and she brought me a coffee mug and this precious magnet from the Van Gogh Museum… check out the quote. Again, I feel so loved because these people know me.

Another Goddaughter, Hannah, dropped off a gorgeous gift bag with four “patio” wine glasses (plastic, that look like glass, so I won’t break them!) and two sets of precious cocktail napkins… one with flip flops on them. Makes me yearn for spring and cookouts on our patio! Madeleine (another Goddaughter) dropped by with a beautiful pendant in an antique box…. and yet another Goddaughter, Sarah, came by with Dinstahl’s candies!!! Yes! Oh, and 5-year-old Sophie came by with her mom to bring me gold earrings from Syria the other day. (She was still wearing her diamond studs from our ear-piercings on February 24.) Again, I’m humbled and grateful.

Driving up to Ripley I passed this sign. For those living outside the South (or Tennessee), Ripley is the “Tomato Capital of the World.” And Stacy, of course, was the Ripley Tomato Festival Queen at least one year.

Here we are at Stacy’s shower… bringing back the 70s with our geometric print dresses. (Sadly, I’ve gained a little weight and if you didn’t know I was 57 today you might wonder what might be hatching under that A-frame mini-dress…. But alas, it’s plain old-fashioned blubber. Even the Spanxx can’t hold it all in. Thank God that Lent begins on Monday!) Stacy is due on Pascha (Eastern Easter – April 27)…. but she’s still a size 0 with a little belly poking out in front!

Okay, that’s it for today. I don’t think a girl should have to work on her birthday, do you? In fact, I could take some advice from Lauri Granieri whose essay, “Leaving Work to Watch Sunsets,” was published on “This I Believe.” Listen to her podcast here. So watch for a more thoughtful blog on Monday…. I’m going out to Blue Fish for my birthday dinner tonight. It’s as close as I can get to the beach while I’m in Memphis! Thanks, everyone, for making my birthday so special!

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