I was a bit jarred when this notification popped up on my phone this morning. I was as prepared today as I could be for this milestone (my mom's first heavenly birthday), but not for this.
Before we headed out to Descanso Gardens and to the cemetery to see my mom, Catherine went out to the garden and collected a basket full of Flawless roses - the first crop of the season. We were so excited to bring Granny blooms from or very first batch. Catherine wore my mom's most favorite headband today - the pink fancy one (all her headbands were fancy, now that think about it). It warmed my heart that Catherine thought to wear it today in honor of my mom.
The lilacs were in full bloom at Descanso and absolutely breathtaking. There were countless varieties with the most captivating names like Lavender Lady, Ivory Silk and President Lincoln.
The tulips were even more magnificent than they were just a few weeks ago at our last visit. They were in full bloom and bursting with color.
The tulips were everywhere and in absolutely every shade you could imagine. It was a feast for the eyes.
We came upon this sea of orange agapanthus that stretched as far as the eye could see. Just glorious!
This majestic cherry tree proved to be the perfect climbing tree for the gang.
This personable Canadian Goose captivated the kids. They followed him around for quite awhile and he seemed quite flattered by the attention.
As soon as we arrived at the cemetery the kids got right to work cleaning up from St. Patrick's Day and redecorating everything for today's birthday festivities and Easter tomorrow. It was a double-header so there was a lot to do.
Miles took great care in placing the breathtaking Flawless roses from our home garden, in vases for Granny and Great Granny. Catherine posed after the decorations were all in place.
The finished product. There is nothing like a perfect Spring/April/Easter birthday. It was a glorious 75 degree breezy day with not a cloud in the sky. I have always been envious of my mother's perfect birthdate. And her birthstone is diamond to boot. Lucky lady!
As we were finishing setting her birthday table at home this evening, Let It Be came on. I had held it together all day until that moment. I was overcome with emotion.
After I had a good cry I came back into the kitchen and finished dinner which was a fresh garden salad dotted with aromatic basil from the garden and fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese. The main course was a hearty bowl of spaghetti served with a homemade mushroom ragu topped with a chiffonade of fresh basil.
Let the party begin!
Here was Granny's place at the table, with the most stunning bouquet of roses, picked by Catherine, placed right in front of her place.
We even bought her very own balloon and everyone donned miniature birthday party hats at the table during dinner. She always loved coming to our home for our themed parities. I think tonight was no exception. We told wonderful stories at the table and had a lot of laughs. I even read a poem to the kids that I had written as a gift to my mom for her 71st birthday. She was most certainly there with us tonight.
Dessert was a decadent Boston Cream Pie Cake. Everyone got two servings in honor of Granny, who was a great connoisseur of cakes. She always had room in "dessert belly" (as Miles calls it) for an extra slice of cake.
The kids sang Happy Birthday to her and placed the cake at her seat at the table. It was so sweet. But mostly it was happy and she would love that.