This weekend, my mother celebrated her 85th birthday in grand style.  She threw herself a party, a big party, with printed invitations and catered food and a magician and balloons and cake and ice cream and her children and grandchildren and nieces and nephews and great grand nieces and nephews and a whole host of extended family.  Roving bands of young children colored and glittered and flew paper airplanes.  There were lots of girls versus boys running games while grown-ups chatted away.  The weather held, its own gift. No sweltering on that sunlit day.

The magician, hired for the little children, captured the grown-ups too, who eventually meandered over to watch. But most of all, my mother captured us all with the magic of turning 85 with a sense of dignity, a sense of fun, and a sense of sheer youthfulness.  As my friend Anne said at the end, “Your mother has shown us the way to age.”

Here the magician has crowned her queen of the ball!

May we all be so lucky, and may we all get to wear a balloon crown in our turn!


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