On Friday, as I was participating in a World-Class Procrastinator's Contest (and winning), thinking about what still needed to get done for the party on Saturday...I heard tires crunch on the gravel drive. Not expecting anyone. Hmmm. Who could it be? Three men got out. Ah, that's Larry (my youngest son)...not due until the next day, but welcome any day, any way...but who's that with him? Ohmigawd! That's Pete and Jake, my middle son and grandson, whom I haven't seen in five years! Hugs and tears. Procrastinators sometimes get bit in the butt...and it doesn't matter. I'd trade an immaculate house on any given day for five minutes with any one of my Kids, with no apologies.
Describing Saturday is going to sound like a seventies/eighties love fest and hard to do without being maudlin. Of course there were the chickens to tend and goats to be milked, but waking up with two of my boys and a grandson in the house was enough to start the day right...and it only got better. The guys kicked in and picked up the slack with housework while I was down at the barn, and we were looking good by the time the first guests arrived for my birthday party. I hope everyone has a day in which everything goes right and in which there is nothing but love. Sappy as that might sound, it is the most wonderful feeling in the world. Deb is the utmost in organizers and had the house looking festive with flowers and ribbons in no time. Her attention to detail is phenomenal. Thanks to her and Craig, it was a party the minute anyone walked in the door. The taco bar, condiments, side dishes, dips filled the seven-foot dining room table and no one went away hungry. The most wonderful sound in the world was the sound of laughter from the two tables of poker. Deb and Craig, Dave, Pete and Jake, Larry, Clay, Dolly, Arden, Joel, Judy and Shari...my children and my dear friends. I'm not going to list their oh-so-very generous and oh-so-much appreciated gifts (my thank you's will never be enough), but I do have to give honorable mention to the most unusual...how many seventy-year-old women receive a certificate for a tattoo? I have been known in the past to save a five-year gift certificate until the four-year, three-hundred sixty-fourth day to redeem, but this is one I'm going to use soon. I got a risque but discreet tattoo in the early nineteen-eighties just to prove to the nurses in the convalescent hospital (when I get there) that I wasn't always this old. This will be just for fun, but I want to put it in a place that won't sag.
It was hard to say goodbye to those who left last night, to those who stayed over until this morning...the house seems so empty today. Memories are gold, and I am a very, very rich woman.