November 10, 2014

Speaking of Old Stuff

My ex-husband used to say that my idea of a large crowd and his idea of a small intimate gathering involved exactly the same number of people. I've been that way about parties from the start.
That's two year old me. In red, naturally.
This weekend, the Divine Ms S hosted a birthday party in honor of my 60th birthday (which is actually this Wednesday, but Himself only socializes on Saturdays between 6:15 and 9:30 pm.) I made the guest list and went crazy:
Six other people!!! My parents, Himself, Mr and Mrs E, and the Divine Ms S. Unfortunately, Dr J (the gynecologist, not the basketball player) couldn't make it.  If I add in Other Julie in Jerusalem, the list of my friends is complete. Actually, if I subtract my mom and dad (I was raised on two refrains, one of which was "we are NOT your friends, we are your parents...")...

...then I have five friends.

Actually, four girlfriends and one husband.

Parts of me really envy people who have housefuls of friends. However, when I actually tiptoe into socializing with that much intensity, my head spins, my throat closes and I feel yanked off my center.  I do know that my friendships are incredibly intimate and since it takes time...real feed and water these intimacies, I think this might be it for my Lifetime Guest List.

The intimacy gives birth to wonders. After a sweet toast, my father stood (that alone borders on wonderous, since he is pretty clumsy to begin with and 87 years haven't helped any) and told us all about the day I was born.  Who gets to be 60 and hears her father talk about the evening Mom's water broke? And even at this age, I felt warmed by my daddy's love for me when he recalled seeing me for the first time and "all I could see was two giant blue eyes."

The Divine Ms S outdid herself on creating  her signature warmth and beauty with color...
Say hello to E's Cheese Cutter Guy on left
 ...and the sweetest of little touches just for me.
The flames are different colors!
I take no issue with turning 60, these days number among the best in my life. But I am overwhelmed by disbelief. Didn't I just have on a little red outfit with a party hat and a chocolate cake with marshmellow bunnies? Didn't I?


  1. Greetings dear Julie of I had a party before my real birthday so that means I get another celebration on Wed... A lovely gathering you had and to have your parents present at your 60th, well, it moved me so and is so heart filled special.

    May Wed be filled with love, joy and laughter and the wearing of something red. I would have added wisdom but you've got that as well as a great heart and while I don't have a gift to send, let me please tell you what a gift it has been to come here and share your words, thoughts, wit, hilarity, seriousness, seeking questions, traveling spirit, in other words THANK YOU for being who you are..

    Something about decade birthdays, to me, they merit celebrations: As I approach each decade, 3 yrs away from my next one, (my 70th), I think of something that I read in one of the notes from Clarissa Pinkola Estes book, Women Who Run With the Wolves. See I just got back from leaving a comment on grace's blog so I've been in the Wolves world and maybe because I now live in New Mexico but Estes had some words that wrapped around me as I thought of going along, year after year. She had this to say about the many selves in our psyches:

    "Like the pueblos and casitas in New Mexico, the psyche is always in at least three stages- the old fallen down part,the part you live in, and the part under construction."

    Some at 60, may have completed their construction, but others of us, still deal with it all, moving forward, backward, asking questions and realizing that it is all part of becoming who we are and the joy in the discovery. Wherever you are in this, I celebrate you and Happy Birthday.

    1. I hope we are all under construction evermore, Marti. I will definitely wear red tomorrow, I am spending my birthday hiking with my Scotland co-conspirators and then doing something other than cooking (I hope).

  2. Happy Birthday Julie!
    who blew the glasses and bowls?

    1. Of course you would ask that!! Well, The Divine Ms S has an eye for these things in all the galleries all over the States, I believe these came from somewhere in Rhode Island but I can't name the artist.

  3. Yes " railway 60 " is full of beauty , welcome
    i knew you bring bring all your experiance
    all your wisdom and your big heart
    with you on that train
    sometimes he go fast ... sometimes slow
    i lot of the love one's go with you
    so do i

    " HAPPY birthday Julie

    1. The train is zooming by, that's for sure, Maria. And thank you.

  4. What a pretty table with such delightful personal touches! Happy Birthday! Occasions like this that mark the passage of time are always bittersweet and a little surreal. Why does time sometimes seem like smoke?

    1. That table is that girl, through and through. If she lets me, I will do a photo tour of her house for you, your jaw will drop through the floor. Surreal, that's the word.

  5. first comment...are those Boxer CRUELLERS???????????
    did you MAKE them?????????????????????

    1. Grace. Dear. All of our writing about knowing how little time is left... I doubt I would run out my clock making boxer cookies (which is a long way of saying that's how long it would take me and really, I couldn't even do it if I tried). The Divine Ms M picked up these almond crescent cookies with dogs made out of sugar (I think they are actually Bulldogs but I'm not gonna check their pedigree.)

      Next question.

  6. happy birthday to you (for the morrow)

    at least your dad referred to your birth in his speech, my dad (83) inevitably veers off to the birth of his son, our brother every time he makes a speech - these days it matters not a jot what the occasion is; as I digress, I realize I'm not unlike him, back to you:

    I absolutely love the wonderful table setting, perfect for a sophisticated birthday celebration also very fitting for your 60th! I sense you have reached the age of wisdom and decorum and from now on will expect nothing less whenever I come to visit, haha
    Those dog biscuits are by far the best, certainly the most cute I have ever seen.

    I also love how you have shared more snippets of your personality and notice we have another trait in common, I too do better in smaller groups. It's the quality not the quantity that matters, duh

    so again I wish you well for your real birthday tomorrow and hope it'll be a good one as well as a fine year ahead, filled with laughter tears walks stitching cloth dogs husband sleep sun snow life and love

    btw my parents lived according to the same rule.

    1. They're people cookies, not dog biscuits (see above comment to Grace). Well, since you mention it, my dad told me something I never knew, which was that he was expecting a son and it took them three days to come up with a name for me!!!

      Thank you so much. Except for the snow.

    2. PS Yes, sophisticated setting. For someone who doesn't even have a dining room, let alone all that other stuff!

    3. people cookies I got that! thought dog biscuits was a funny play of words, hihi

      three days, that was quick!

  7. what kind of cheese in the blue/white wrapper?

    1. In the immortal words of Moe, "oooh, a wise guy, huh??"

      Owen's mom brought it, I will ask her. By that time, I was well into the second bottle of bubbly and only had eyes for the carrot cake.

  8. Today Julie will be wearing red,
    To all who come here, let it be said,
    Julie is wise, witty and filled with mirth.
    And today is the actual day of her birth...
    So without further ado...
    Julie, Happy Birthday to you.

    1. There once was a Wolf-Woman named Marti
      Who went gaga over pix from a party
      She reached across the screen
      To a soul she's never seen
      And gifted her with words hale and hearty

  9. so, Hey, Old Stuff...a very HAPPY Birth Day to you, dear one. I wish that all you
    wish for comes to you in this great and auspicious year of six 0. Your table above
    so Loving and BEAUTY full, and EEE, Owen's mom sat with you, Yes!
    I have a feeling it's going to be a very Fine year for all of Us.
    BIG and GIANT LOVE to you

    1. Yours doesn't rhyme but is just as beautiful and thank you for it all. Yes, it feels like Good is sprinkling down on us. Maybe because we are looking at long last. Love back.