celebrating: tuesday nights

With ticket it hand, we pass through the gates to a baseball stadium that awakens all our senses. The smell of fresh popcorn, the sight of a freshly raked diamond wrapped in a bed of luscious green grass, the sound of baseballs flying into mitts as the players warm up, the grasp of B’s hand as we quickly maneuver our way through the crowds, past our assigned seating section, in an earnest rush to get to. . . ah, finally, the taste of hand-rubbed, hickory smoked ribs, smothered in a concoction of two parts (read: pumps) sweet original and three pumps brushed-fire barbecue sauce.


The featured special at the Clipper’s game was City BBQ Buck-A-Bone Night and I think know that is the real reason why we were at the game.

My B has a thing for Ribs: oven-baked ribs, grilled-ribs, smoked-ribs, homemade ribs or restaurant-prepared ribs, he loves them all. & so, a couple dollars later, we sat with strangers at a picnic table, gnawing on bones, faces covered in BBQ-sauce.
But hey, B is happy: we made it to the Rib Shack before the ribs sold out . . . success.


The rest of the night went as any baseball game night would go.

We made friendly chatter with the usher who dried our seats off and took our picture.

We ate freshly baked pretzel sticks, loaded with salt and dipped in warm cheese sauce. Mmm.


We sang-along to all the classic baseball game tunes: I mean, common, who doesn’t love a little “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”.

& yes, we cheered for the game.

In fact, I am pretty sure I caught B cheering for both teams. He says it’s because “it’s just exciting to see a good play” but I am convinced it’s because he was torn, the RedSocks are his team; but Columbus is his home.


During these summer nights, I am reminded that it’s not so much about what you do or where you are. It not about whether your seats are behind the dugout or in the bleachers. It doesn’t matter if you refuse to pay another $4.00 for another bottle of water & if, instead, you settle on refilling the one you did buy with drinking fountain water. (Can you guess what we did?) & although it’s fun to pick a team and root them on, it really doesn’t matter which team comes out winning.

But what does matter is taking the time to carve away a fun date night, create new memories, enjoy summer nights that are warm and maybe, if you’re really sneaky, steal a couple kisses.

& the added bonus: during the 6th inning, just when the game gets a little slow, the snacks run out, the seats become increasingly more uncomfortable . . . we let our attention shift away from the playing field, just in time, to admire all the colors of the sun as it made it’s final descent behind the stadium.


It was one•perfect•summer•night.


celebrating: fifty


this week we celebrated a birthday.

a 50th birthday.

& for the months and weeks and days leading up to it, my mom was dreadful. it was her birthday and she could not get past the number. . .
you see, mom does not usually dread these kind of things, she is a carefree, have-fun, young-spirited kinda girl. . . but this year, this year was differently because the calendar was telling her shes fifty and ya, she’s definitely not fifty. . .

so, we all pulled together as a family and did what we had to do to celebrate a birthday that announces fifty years of smiling, fifty years of talent and fifty years of happy, happy living.

ready. setty. go.

the airline ticket was bought.
the birthday planning lists were made.
a pinterest board dedicated to the birthday dinner menu was created.
& bubs and i tossed around all sorts of ideas with dad for how to celebrate mom.

normally, birthdays get a day.
a day of all your favorite foods, a day of gifts, a day to call all the shots
but this year, these big birthdays, they deserve an entire week.

::: & so, here you have it, moms birthday week :::

we started sunday afternoon with drinks and apps on the patio.
dad grilled salmon for dinner while we kicked mom outta the kitchen so we could put the finishing touches on dutch-oven roasted peppers, lemony broccoli salad and oven roasted potatoes.
& then we had birthday cake
((let it be known that no birthday is complete without birthday cake and birthday cake must always be homemade; not store bought. . . it’s part of the love ))
this year, mom wanted chocolate & lots of it.
this was the cake she choose. this chocolate cake drizzled with chocolate ganache, adorned with birthday candles and accompanied with graeters ice cream. . . this cake, was the perfect fiftieth birthday cake.

we bought her this necklace and these sunglasses
she was so surprised & oh, so thankful.

bubs and tommy treated her to drinks, gyros & italian ice the night before her birthday.

her friends at work littered her desk with 50 colorful (read: colorful not black or she may have cried) balloons.
there were bagels and cream puffs; cupcakes and cheryl’s cookies.
a lunch date, flowers and lots of happy birthday wishes.

& then, on friday, we delivered her with a red suitcase and her vera carry-on to the airport where she would fly away to continue this birthday week celebration with dad.

dad surprised her with a weekend get-a-way to nashville where they would stay out wayyyy past the normal 10pm bedtime, sleep-in wayyyy past the normal 7am alarm time, trade saturday morning errands for southern-air and live bands in a city where you can’t help but feel young.


yup, her birthday week was a success

truth be told:: i’m glad we opted out of the big party-throwing, invite-all-your-friends kinda celebration.
this was a birthday year that mom appreciated being able to fly under the radar, clink glasses with family and enjoy a weekend away with her hubby.

mom, you celebrated your way through this big day, you made it and we are so proud of you.
the calendar says you are fifty, and you are, but we’re all totally cool with you still livin’ like you’re not!

we love birthdays; we celebrate birthdays, we do birthdays with lots and lots of love.