My 64th birthday was wonderful! Studly Doright surprised me by taking a day off of work, and we enjoyed a late breakfast at a local restaurant. Afterwards we dressed in our riding gear and took a motorcycle ride to Seminole State Park.
It was supposed to be a short ride—no more than sixty miles round trip, but a section of the road was closed due to a bridge being under repair. Did we give up? Hell, no. Studly programmed a different route into his gps and off we went.
Many, many miles later we reached the state park. There, we found a shady spot to park our bikes and hiked for a bit. The weather was perfect—temperatures in the mid-70’s and an almost cloudless blue sky. Studly posed for me in the “chapel.” See the steeple?
Afterwards we stopped at Spring Creek Resort somewhere near Donalson, Georgia, for a terrific lunch. I ate way too much, but hey, calories do not count on one’s birthday. That’s a fact.
The ride home was easy and uneventful. That is, until we turned into our housing development. The road to Doright Manor is filled with curves and hills, and for some reason, going around one curve I rolled on the throttle and came mere inches from becoming an off-road rider. Fortunately, I corrected my path and stayed on the pavement. The alternative wouldn’t have been pretty, and I likely wouldn’t be writing this blog post right now. 😳
Still congratulating myself for avoiding a major disaster I rolled into the driveway and up to the ramp into Studly’s garage. The bike was at an awkward angle, so I killed the engine and asked Studly if he’d ride the bike into the garage for me. Of course he said he would. That’s why I call him Studly Doright!
But guess who tried to get off the bike without putting her kickstand down? Yes, that would be me. In the blink of an eye I was hitting the driveway, my helmet bouncing off the asphalt and the bike laying on top of me.
Miraculously, only the windshield was damaged in the fall, and we’d already decided the aftermarket shield was too tall for my liking, so we will just replace it sooner rather than later.
My helmet saved my noggin from serious injury. My head literally bounced when I landed. And I landed on my right side. That’s the same side I injured when I fell into/out of bed a few weeks ago, so at least I still have one operational side.
So maybe it’s time I got a stunt double. Contact me if you’re interested. I can’t pay much, but you’ll never be bored.
When I was in my teens, Ringo Starr’s song, “You’re 16,” was a big hit. I even created a goofy dance number to the tune and performed it for my mom and the guy I was dating at the time. Now, I feel compelled to create a special dance for “When I’m Sixty-four.” It could be epic.
Today I’ve been very antsy. I can’t keep my mind on the book I’m reading (Testament by Margaret Atwood), my attention to details is more lacking than usual, and I’m constantly in search of a snack. If I didn’t know better I’d think I was pregnant. There’s absolutely no chance of that, by the way. I’ll be 63 tomorrow and I kicked my uterus to the curb at least a decade ago.
Maybe my impending birthday has me unsettled. Sixty-three is nothing to sneeze at, after all, especially if one has bladder control issues. Not naming names, but I have intimate knowledge of people who suffer.
Remembering birthdays past, the day I turned 12 my great-grandfather died. Mom picked me up from school and imparted the sad news as we walked from the school to her car. She apologized that my birthday party would need to be postponed since the funeral would be held on the day we’d planned to have friends over.
I remember being bummed, but I think I handled it okay. At least I don’t remember stomping off in a rage. I wasn’t always the most reasonable child, and I was undeniably unsettled on that day, too.
Fast forward to 2019, Studly Doright and I don’t have any birthday themed plans for this weekend. Tomorrow he’s playing golf, while I attend a wedding. I’m looking forward to dressing up and witnessing a celebration of the joining of two lives. We’ve moved so often that we haven’t formed those kinds of relationships–the ones where we are invited to weddings and graduations, baby showers and engagement parties. So I’m going to enjoy every minute of inclusion in the couple’s celebration.
Is there a purpose to today’s post? Not as far as I can tell, other than writing it kept me from eating a second Lara bar. I might not be pregnant, but I seem to be eating for two.
Monday was Studly Doright’s birthday. I’d already spent a good deal of money and all of my bright ideas on his Christmas gifts, so my birthday choices were limited. I was running out of time to make a purchase for the big day, so at the last minute I kind of panicked and bought him an air fryer–hardly the sexiest birthday present, but at least it was something I could wrap and stick a bow on.
He seemed to like it. He didn’t jump for joy upon unwrapping it, but he didn’t act as if he’d like to throw the fryer in the trash either, so I was somewhat heartened. I’d planned to cook one of his favorite dinners utilizing the new appliance, so I sent him away while I figured out how to use his new toy.
Hey, did you know it’s recommended to let the fryer heat up empty for twenty minutes the first time you use it? Heh. Neither did I. The smell emanating from the air fryer was a little on the noxious side, so I tossed out the first batch of French fries and started from scratch after reading ALL of the directions, instead of just the suggested cooking times.
In the middle of cooking batch #2, I had a flashback to our very first days of marriage. As a wedding gift, someone had given us a Fry Baby–a small deep fryer for cooking fries and onion rings. The thing splattered grease all over the place when in use, and I was scared of it. I looked at the air fryer with new respect. No oil meant no splatter.
When our fries were done I struggled just a bit with getting the basket out of the fryer and in my mind’s eye I pictured me pulling too hard and launching hot French fries into my face. Surprisingly I used finesse instead of force and soon I had a nice batch of crispy fries basking on a serving plate. Studly was impressed, I was uninjured, and the fryer was a hit.
(Below: That’s not my air fryer or my hand, or even my fries.)
We had pinto beans and cornbread to round out the meal. That’s about as country as it comes, and it’s our comfort food.
Tomorrow is Studly Doright’s birthday. Falling so near the Thanksgiving Holiday, sometimes his big day gets barely a nod. After all, didn’t we just stuff ourselves on turkey and dressing and pecan pie until the mere thought of having a slice of birthday cake seems like the ultimate in gluttony? And then there’s the sad truth that I struggle with anything kitchen-related, baking cakes included.
Nevertheless, I bought a cake mix and a can of icing while shopping yesterday, and this morning I set about making a cake for Studly. As I mixed the cake I had a thought. What if, instead of baking a sheet cake I made cupcakes? That way I could send the bulk of them with Studly to work and we’d keep one for each of us to enjoy after dinner tomorrow.
I happened to have some little paper cupcake 🧁 wrappers so I placed those in my large cupcake pan and began pouring batter neatly into the 12 cake slots, filling each about 2/3 full. I ended up with almost half the batter remaining, so I poured a bit more into each cup. Still there was an extraordinary amount left over. Finally I thought to check the box and realized that the mix was meant to make 24 cupcakes. Well, of course it was.
Meticulously, I scooped batter out of each of the already filled cups and transferred it to another muffin pan, making something of a mess as I went. However, I finally had 24 muffin cups filled with fairly equal amounts of batter.
Amazingly that was the only misstep in the entire process! The cupcakes, although admittedly not uniform in size, baked to a light golden brown. I allowed them to cool for the exact right amount of time, and the frosting went on smoothly. Maybe, just maybe, for once in my life I didn’t totally screw up this latest kitchen adventure. But there’s still time.
(Note: These are NOT examples of my cupcakes. Even the reality side looks slightly better the mine.)
The first day of my 62nd year on earth started off in the best way possible–with me sleeping in until 6:30 a.m. Of course it helps that I’m in the central time zone here in Dallas, but I’ll claim a victory over sleeplessness any way I can get it.
My daughter-in-law made me feel special with a banner and card.
Then my son took us to breakfast at a funky place called the All Good Cafe in the Deep Ellum district.
I had an amazing omelet!
Across the street from All Good:
On the ride back to our son’s home we got a glimpse of the Texas State Fair:
The men are playing golf this afternoon and I’m going to pick the grandkids up at school. There might be time for a birthday nap before then, though. That’d be great.
We were shopping for Studly Doright a sports jacket at Dillard’s a couple of nights ago. He found one fairly quickly and as we were leaving the men’s department he said, “Well, now I need you to help me find a gift for a girl I used to date.”
I did a double take, and my mind quickly scrolled through all the girls he’d ever dated. Before I could express outrage he said, “She’s kind of hard to buy for, and her birthday’s on the 5th.”
Only then did I realize he was talking about me. I slugged him. Gently.