Wednesday, September 28, 2011

This is not the place I meant to go

Once upon a time (let's say "September 16," just for kicks), my grandparents celebrated their 69th wedding anniversary.

Only they had their party on the 17th, just to mix things up.

(The only sunny thing ALL DAY.)

My grandparents didn't want a big party because it was only their 69th.  So my mother, aunts and uncle threw a small family party at some park in some out-of-the-the way place.  Apparently they used to stop there a lot when Mom et al were growing up, so it had "memories."  It was my Aunt Joan's idea.  (Hi, Joan!)  And it was a good one.  What could go wrong?

So of course the weather does not cooperate.  It was gorgeous the day before... and crappy the day of.  But really, what's a little wind and a few sprinkles?  So what if the flower arrangements kept getting tossed off the tables?  Who cares if it was so cold the masses mostly chose to sit huddled under quilts?  

Even though this was a "small" party, it really wasn't.  My grandparents have extended family in the area, and then there's the family they've managed to create themselves, plus the fact they know no stranger and a lot of their friends are as good as family.  The people just kept coming.  It was sort of nuts.  

(See the blue sky?  Me neither.)

To recap (because I've sort of forgotten what my point was): Bad weather, lots of people.  Lots of food.  And with the 18 dozen cupcakes or whatever (you think I'm exaggerating, but I don't think I am), I was a bit surprised to see Mom and The Aunts bring out a couple of cakes to boot.  

Here's the thing: My grandparents have friends who were married the day after they were, and are thus called "The Newlyweds."  Since The Newlyweds were at my grandparents' party on their actual anniversary, they got a cake, too.  What's the percentage two couples make it to 69, let alone on the same weekend?  Awesome.

But maybe we were all on cake overload.

One extra guest: My Aunt Joan's boys' friend's dog*, who has emotional problems and can't stand to be left alone.  Joan was babysitting this poor, messed up little guy, who watched her every move to make sure she didn't get too far away.  I guess Joan babysits him quite a bit.  I'm not sure a party was the best place for him--he was shaking a lot (I suppose he could have been cold, considering)--but look how adorable he is:

(This dog has separation anxiety.  I am not kidding.)

...And one more recap, because for some reason this post is giving me fits (I've been trying to pound this sucker out for two hours): We ate too much (I had two cupcakes and got a stomach ache, but I'm pretty sure my girls had even more than that), visited with cousins and aunts and uncles and other relatives we don't see that often, had some family pictures taken, and got to tell my grandparents how much we love them.  Oh, and somewhere in there my mother decided that we should all "introduce ourselves" and explain "how we were related."  Everyone pretended to be put out, but everyone went along with it anyway.  This is because my mother always gets her way.  (Hi, Mom!  And what?  You totally do.)

All in all, it was fun, even if it was freezing.  And next year?  The party will be indoors.

I know because Mom says so.

*How's that for a mouthful?  I suppose I could have just said "my cousins' friend's dog," only it's my aunt who was stuck with the thing.

The Smithereens, "Miles from Nowhere."  Because we WERE miles from nowhere.  And they told me before it was so, it was miles from nowhere.  (At least I was warned.)

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