We celebrated my grandmother's 80th birthday yesterday afternoon. In retrospect, having everyone stare directly into the sun wasn't the best idea. But I'm so glad that so many of us were able to attend to help her celebrate. Eighty is one of those landmarks, and I don't look at it in respect to physical age, but in the amount of life lived. It's a big deal when you think of it in those terms. She had her three children, both her brothers, her grandchildren, and great grandchildren in attendance. Even missing a few nephews and my brother (he had to work; big weekend at the theater) we had a houseful of people! The weather was gorgeous; the horses were happy to come visit for carrots; except for the swarms of yellow jackets, it was the perfect afternoon for a party.
We had pork tenderloin with rosemary and thyme. Green beans (with bacon). Cinnamon apples. And my very favorite twice baked potatoes. There were pictures of my grandmother spread throughout the house; the one in the background below is the photo my grandfather carried with him while he was in Korea. It made it all the way back from the war.
I don't have any idea what the rest of my life will look like, but if I get to be eighty, and look back, I hope I can be proud of the trip getting there.