Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Surprise 85th Birthday Party That Wasn't

If you read my last post, you may remember I mentioned going to a BBQ today. Now that I won't be giving away any secrets, I can tell you we were going to my father-in-law's surprise 85th birthday party.

I thought I'd share one of the dishes I made with you--a tomato salad.


This was so simple to make. I just diced up some tomatoes from my neighbor's garden (yes, she actually GAVE them to us--I wasn't over there stealing them!), added a container of marinaded mozarella cheese (cut the little balls in half first), tossed in a jar of marinaded garlic mushrooms (drained first and both liquid and jar not added!), and minced up some basil. To all that, I added a couple glugs of balsamic vinegar and maybe about a tablespoon of sugar. Finally, I tossed it all together and then I drained off some of the dressing so it wouldn't get too soggy. Oh yum! To tell you the truth, I forgot I took this photo until I downloaded photos tonight.

Besides the tomato salad, I also made a potato salad--pretty standard variety and no photo to share since you've probably seen potato salad before. Hubby had fun, though, telling everyone who would listen that we brought the "toe" salads: "toma-TOE" and "pota-TOE." Goofy man! One of my sisters-in-law brought a great macaroni salad and another sister-in-law brought chocolate cake and ice cream. The third sister-in-law brought chicken and tri tip. We ate rather well, I think!

We were all supposed to arrive at 2:30 in the afternoon and surprise my father-in-law, the birthday boy. Hubby and I were running about five minutes early, so I asked him to do a drive by first to see if anyone else was there yet. There was a car parked outside and although we didn't recognize it, we figured someone had arrived before us. Nope! We were the first. My father-in-law was standing, looking out the front door when we pulled up. "What are you doing here?," he asked. Hubby, always the quick thinker, replied, "We're just out for a Sunday drive." Meanwhile, I'm still sitting in the car, holding the TOE salads on my lap, wondering why we'd be driving around with salads. After all, gas is too expensive these days for the kind of long aimless drives that require us to pack side dishes! Father-in-law didn't really seem to question it though, so it worked out okay. Everyone else showed up about five minutes later, I yelled "SURPRISE!," and the festivities got under way with the ritual exchange and passing around of birthday cards.

It was just then we discovered that it wasn't his 85th birthday after all--it was only his 84th, and he seemed a little put out that one of the birthday cards wished him a happy 85th birthday. Men are so vain about their age, I swear! I suggested we all go home and come back next year, but everyone thought that since we were already there with all that food, we might as well celebrate. So we did. And some kind of magic was done in the kitchen with that chocolate birthday cake so it said "Happy 84th Birthday" instead of "Happy 85th Birthday."

Besides the birthday party and making TOE salads, I found time to run down to the quilt shop today and get another charm pack of the Portugal fabric as well as some background fabric. So that little stack of textile love is sitting in the Sweat Shop, waiting for me to pay it a little attention. First, though, I'm kind of hooked on this Thimbleberries mini. Tonight I made the fourth part of the quilt, so here's an updated photo. The center section will have some applique in it--a sailboat I think. Well, you'll see, I'm sure!


Sadly, my vacation is over and it's back to work tomorrow. I suppose this means I can't stay up until 3 a.m. tonight and sleep in until 9 a.m., darn it! All good things must come to an end, though, and I really enjoyed relaxing and playing with whatever I felt like playing with for the last several days. I hope you had a lovely weekend doing the same sort of thing!

13 comments:

Teresa said...

Yum...the salad looks great and sounds like one that gets better after it has set in the fridge a day or so. I will have to try that. Your Thimbleberries quilt is coming along great and I look forward to seeing how you finish it up.

Poor Dad - y'all trying to age him before his time. I do the same to my mom..I have been telling folks she was 87, but she just turned 87 last week. Fortunately I did not give her a cake that said 88 - she would not think that funny.

Have a good first day back at work, for that matter a good second, third, fourth and fifth until the weekend arrives again.

Caryn said...

Your salad looks yummy! I know a few husbands with the same sense of humor as yours - they would have been saying the same things about the "toes"! Good luck back at work. I stayed home Friday and it made the weekend so much longer. Today I get to do out of the office stuff so that will make Monday much better too!!!

Marcie said...

I can't believe you got to the party a year early! Too funny! At least you got to go to a party and sounds like it was great. Your salad looks wonderful!

MichelleB said...

That salad looks divine! I'm glad that you made it to the quilt shop. And your quilt is looking great!

Winona said...

Kim,
I love your sense of humor. I always smile when I read your blog. Glad someone could fix the cake. Wouldn't want your FIL too upset to eat any.LOL Your quilt is looking good.
Winona

Thimbleanna said...

Oooh, that salad looks yummy! Glad it doesn't really contain any toes!

Sandy said...

You were so right in adding some red to that 4th block. Can't wait to see the mini when it is all completed. Any the tomato salad looks very yummy.

quiltmom said...

What a great tomato salad- it looks wonderful and tasty- I am going to have make it too.. The toes is a very funny line...

I am sure your sweat shop is going to be a busy place in the next while with your new project and the Thimbleberries quilt..

Regards,
Anna

Lorraine said...

......hmmm no getting around it I will be 55 this year....I am sure he had a wonderful time anyway! I am back to work tomorrow too.....had a fabulous few days off - three of them at a workshop which was great!! love the Thimbleberries quilt you are working on....don't work too hard.....i hope to get some stitching done today before I am back at work.......trying not to think too much about tomorrow tho!

Red Geranium Cottage said...

That sald looks soooooo darn good. I could go for a bowl of that right about now!!!!!
When your over 80 who cares which birthday it is honestly?? LOL
Your quilt is turning out so pretty!!

Barbie Jo said...

My Dads birthday was Friday, I kept telling everyone he was going to be 92. I stand corrected, by him, he is only 91!
Your BOA sure is looking pretty. I honestly don't know how you get it all done and blog everynight besides. Must be something good in that California water.

Su Bee said...

That's hilarious - GrandPop is the only one with an intact memory! ROFL!
Man, your tomato salad is making me drool.....

Vallen said...

Toe salads are always the best anyway. I am going to give hat tomaTOE salad a try this week. It looks divine.