Friday, October 17, 2008

Tonight We're Gonna Party Like It's 1959

Well, I'm glad to say I survived the hoopla that was my mother's 50th birthday. After two years of plotting and planning, its over and done and I'm left with nothing but decorations and leftover hamburgers in my refrigerator. (Quite a few, actually, since RSVP seems to be a loose concept around here.) I say we have a 50's party again at some point in the future because I have a LOT of stuff that can be reused. Perhaps the Class of '57 Murder party for next year's retreat...

It was a logistical challenge toward the end with company in town, table rentals, decorating, etc., but worth it. It was a tangled web of my own making, so I can't complain too much. In the end, everything went off without a hitch. (Well, one hitch - the church gave us the key to decorate Friday night, but neglected to inform us about the security alarm. Oops.) Most important - my mother was verklempt. Everyone who came had a good time or at least they said they did. The bank where she works is just a-buzz at my party planning skills. I'll say it was a success despite my own critical eye seeing all the things that went wrong. Here's a few pictures of the extravaganza...

First, me, my mom and my stepdad. Thanks to Stephanie for loaning my mother the perfect polka-dotted dress for the party. It sounds silly, but I was in awe of the balloon arch. I watched the lady assemble it and it was dumbfounding. For what it cost, it should've been, but still, very cool. Pity we couldn't fit it in the car to take home. The Sunday School kids were probably thrilled when they arrived the next day.

Yes, that's me and yes, I'm wearing roller skates. Despite a few close calls, I did not fall. I fully expected to wrap up the evening with a trip to the ER, but was willing to make the sacrifice for the effect. I did quite well, I think. I'm not about to get a job as a car hop at Sonic or anything, but I did okay for a girl who hasn't roller skated since the 7th grade.

Here's the birthday cake I spoke about earlier. I think it turned out great without too much aggravation on my part. Tasted good too, I guess. I didn't get any, so I'm not real sure. No one got food poisoning, at least. :) There were leftovers, but the bottom tier met an unfortunate fate with the floorboard of my car and I had to throw it away. I will forever have flecks of turquoise frosting in the carpeting.... Anyway, the top two tiers were white almond sour cream cake with lemon buttercream filling and the bottom tier was triple chocolate sour cream cake with peanut butter filling. My mom was very upset when we hacked into it, but that's the point of cake.

I have to say I'm exceptionally proud of my people. When my people RSVP, they show up. They dress appropriate for the occasion - Instigator rocked a platinum wig and leather pants and PC even made her own poodle skirt! We were the best looking folks in the bunch. They dragged their husbands with them and make them dress up, too. PM even got her husband to dance with her. I appreciate the support. My people rock.

It was a sock hop, but we didn't really have a dancin' crowd. I drug a horrified DB out to dance in the hopes that it would stir up more dancing, but alas, I just embarassed him. We got a few people on the floor for the Twist and the Hand Jive, but that didn't require the hubbies to participate. I was able to harass a few folk into the hula hoop contest, though. PM whooped my step-dad. Who knew her hips could move like that?! :) They all got some fuzzy dice and 50's style rubber duckies as a reward for their bravery.

Now that its all over, I'm relieved and a little lost. Time to start planning the next party, I think. :) What is your favorite birthday memory? Have you ever had a big party to celebrate?



Playground Monitor said...

When my husband turned 40, a friend arranged for a "red hot mama" to come to his office and serenade him with "Hey Big Spender." Unbeknownst to him, I was in the corner with the video camera. When asked what I might think of the whole thing, he said, "I have no idea, but I'm sure you'll tell her." At that point the crowd parted and I walked out of the corner.

Seven months later when I turned 40, I was surprised at a dinner with friends with everyone wearing black armbands, a tombstone at my place at the table and a lot of the other "Over the Hill" paraphernalia.

When the DH was approaching 50, I planned nothing because I knew paybacks could be hell. So we both slipped right into 50 quietly and without fanfare.

Your party rocked, SP. And for the record, Mr. Playground Monitor loves to dance so no coercion was required. He liked getting in an extra ride on the Harley that week.

squiresj said...

My favorite birthday memory goes back a longs way. I don't have many good birthday memories. But when I was younger, My Mom would let you decide on one guest to invite over to dinner. You also got to chose what you wanted for dinner that day and price was not an object. Only time it happened each year. That year I invited both my Pastor (a woman) and a 90 year old lady I took to church so she wouldn't have to walk in a bad neighborhood. I got my long haired wig I had ordered that day in the mail. I loved wearing wigs especially during income tax season when we were so busy. I got an angel food cake with green icing from the neighbor lady that morning for my birthday. Also a necklace (blue heart on a nice chain- which I still have over 30 years later). At work my girlfriend baked a huge shamrock cake - beautiful. Then my sister baked a cake also. I had three cakes in one day. Always green icing as my birthday is day after St. Patrick's Day.
My Pastor and I ran a race that day to see who could eat the most bbq'd spareribs - a favorite of mine and something I rarely got. It was a birthday that stuck in my memory for years. I was in my 20s then - that was 30 years ago but it is still special.

Rhonda Nelson said...

SP, that cake was gorgeous!! (But I wouldn't expect anything less from you. :-) So glad that your mom had a good time. You're a VERY good daughter.

Problem Child said...

You did a fantastic job, SP! (And I'm sorry DG had to cancel at the last minute-- the flu was not fun.)

I'm immensely proud of my poodle skirt. Look for a blog post about it soon. (Seriously.)

DG planned a surprise party for my 30th -- and managed to pull off the surprise part as well. He even arranged for far-flung friends to call during the party so they could be there in spirit. Kudos to the Geek -- it meant a lot to me.

Anonymous said...

Great pictures and thanks for sharing all. My favorite birthday is when I turned 40 and announced to my family that by the following year I would be in a home and out of my apartment. And I made it come true. Have a great Friday and a wonderful weekend.

Instigator said...

It was a fantastic party, SP! The cake was not only amazing but delicious.

I remember a birthday party when I was young - living in Michigan so I couldn't have been more than 7 or 8. It involved digging in the sandbox for hidden toys. I think I remember it though because I put a plastic stick in my mouth and accidentally shoved it down my throat and scraped the hell out of it. It hurt! I mean I've had great parties. I remember having a good time and everything. But that one is a memory I just can't seem to forget :-) What does it say about me that I remember the bad stuff easier than the good?


Darling Geek said...

I'm sorry I wasn't there too, but I had a genuine doctor's note and everything.

Lynn Raye Harris said...

It was an awesome party, SP, and we had fun. I don't think I've had a party per se that I remember the most. But my wedding -- now that was a party. :) That was a fun day.

We were married in Germany, so we had the reception at a German Gasthaus. And they'd never done an American wedding reception before, so it was a brand new experience to them. We had a huge buffet with food almost too pretty to eat, a DJ, etc. We had an honor guard, and we cut the cake with a sword. Very fun.

Angel said...

I'm so sorry I missed this!!!! It looks awesome.

My favorite birthday party memory is my 18th birthday with my twin sister. We'd always done "family parties" but this was a huge gala event with all of our family and friends. My mother went out of her way.


Cheri2628 said...

This looks like a fantastic party! I LOVE the cake! I wish my friends had fun birthdays like this.

Kathy said...

The cake was delicious, the decorations spectacular!! Thanks for inviting me, SP. I had a fantabulous time!!

Your mom is one lucky lady to have you as her daughter. :-D

Anonymous said...

Yesterday was my birthday, so I would have to say yesterday. I'm half your mother's age, so it was fun. We just had a nice, normal family gathering and it was nice for once.

Anonymous said...

What an awesome cake. Everyone looks like they were having a great time. Wish I could have been there, I love to dance.