Tag Archives: birthdays

Friday:) The Finest Friends and the Finest Pizza in the World

7 Jan

“There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.” ― Jane Austen


Ok, I realize that I’m very biased, but I have the best friends and family in the entire world. Plus, I was born and raised in Chicago, which has the best pizza known to man…and woman. Yes, it does! Now, combine the two, and I’m the luckiest person in the world.

I’ve been able to spend some time with my family and friends over the holidays. And oh, being able to hold my brand new granddaughter in my arms, that’s the best. 

The other day, my old friends, (they’re not old, I am) Lin and Vicky met me for dinner at Lou Malnoti’s Pizzeria in Buffalo Grove. We’ve been friends since our kids were in grammar school, back in the 80’s and 90’s. We were on the same bowling team for many years. We’ve remained good friends even after I moved to Texas in ’04.

Now, when I come back to Chicago for a visit, we always get together. They wanted to celebrate my birthday, so they asked where I wanted to go for dinner. PIZZA! I need Chicago deep dish pizza! I’d been here three weeks and hadn’t had any deep dish pizza. They were more than happy to oblige. Lou’s has one of the best deep dish pizzas in the city.

Good friends and good food. Look at this pizza!

When I’m in Chicago, I eat pizza like a squirrel storing it up for the winter. I can’t get enough, because I know it’s going to be a long cold winter without decent pizza back in Texas. 

Then, because we were celebrating my birthday, we all had dessert. It was a warm chocolate chip cookie bowl with ice cream with whipped cream. I made a wish and blew out the candle. I guess my wish came true  because there was left over pizza to take home for the next day.

Yep, I have the best friends. Thanks Vicky and Lin for a great birthday dinner. “Friends for a lifetime.”

Theme Song Thursday:) Celebrate

18 Nov

“Don’t regret; just celebrate your knowledge and wisdom. Life isn’t about an easygoing sheltered heaven; it’s about living.” 
― Rola Mahmoud


We finally were able to get together to celebrate Sherry’s birthday. We went to Cristina’s Mexican Restaurant for a nice long lunch and lots of girlie talk. Good food, good friends, and lots of fun presents. Girlfriends know how to celebrate.

We all sang happy birthday, and Señora Joplin was kind enough to share her dessert with us all. True friendship! 

Happy belated birthday Sherry. 

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff (Grandma’s Birthday)

6 Jun

“The loving arms of a grandmother may be weak and frail, but they give the most powerful hugs imaginable.”

~Toni Amenta Andrukaitis


Today is the Tenth Sunday of Ordinary time, I have no idea what the Gospel or the sermon was about. I was just ecstatic to be in Chicago. Going to Mass with my son Joe at his church in Northbrook was such a delightful bonus.The nice thing about the Catholic Mass is, even though the songs and hymns have a different tune, the words are the same and easy to follow along. I sang my little heart out. 

Kinda blurry photo of St. Norbert. After Mass we lit a candle and said a special prayer.

Seeing as I had a captive son, I asked if we could stop for a coke or tea and have a chat. A lot to catch up with. I scooted to the other side and said, “Selfie time!” He grimaced and groaned, but obliged his old goofy mother…knowing that it would be on Facebook in a few hours. 

Then, a trip to visit my mom. Me, Joe, with his wife, ( my lovely new daughter-in-law) Lindsay drove to Elgin. Grandma was thrilled to see her grandson and granddaughter. We were celebrating Mom’s 89th birthday which will be Monday. We went to lunch and had a nice visit.

I’m staying with Mom and we will celebrate tomorrow again. When you are 89, there’s no such thing as too many birthday celebrations.

Grandma’s day is now complete. But, tomorrow is another day.

Theme Song Thursday:) Celebrate

22 Apr

Amit Kalantri

“A birth-date is a reminder to celebrate the life as well as to update the life.” 


Not only was it a beautiful day here in McKinney, but it was a great day to celebrate our friend, Lynda’s, special birthday. 

Lynda invited us to her beautiful home in the historic district. I think we spent more time exploring her yard, beautiful gardens, greenhouse, and perfectly decorated historic home.

Lynda is an amazing artist, and she has many friends who are fantastic artists in their own right. She specifically asked her friends not to bring any gifts. Being obedient yet benevolent friends, no one followed directions. She received many homemade, handcrafted and creative gifts. Artists have the best birthday parties.

Look what Kelly made. A spectacular jeweled gecko. 

We all were in awe of Lynda’s back yard. 

A great day with great friends. Happy birthday Lynda.

Theme Song Thursday:) Happy Birthday Miss Laura  

8 Apr

“To fill your life with joy and happiness, the greatest gift that you can give is love and kindness. Wishing you a memorable birthday!” 
― Debasish Mridha


A beautiful day here in McKinney. A great day to celebrate our good friend, Laura Canfield’s birthday at Tupps Brewery. Miss Laura is an amazing artist, potter, and good friend to many. Not surprising that so many good friends came to celebrate her special day. A special day, for a special lady.


Montage Monday and More Celebrations 

12 Jan

I think the more birthdays you have, the more days you should be able to celebrate.

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Well, just when I thought I was done celebrating my birthday and being treated to lunch, another day of celebration. 

My friend, Linda Grossman, realtor extrordainaire and dear friend, invited me to lunch today, for yes, yet another birthday celebration. This makes day 5 of birthday celebrations. I think you should get at least one day for every decade you manage to get through. Hmm? Let’s see what tomorrow brings? 

When I got home, I received a Edible Arrangement gift basket from my son Joe and new wife, Lindsay. Fresh fruit and chocolate dipped fruit. What’s not to love! 

It was another great day. More celebrating, and another beautiful sunset on my evening walk.

Even the sky celebrated with glorious color at the end of the day.


Sunday Sermon, a Special Birthday, and a Sunset

11 Jan

When the years fly by like a Texas tornado, it’s good to have strong roots, a loving family tree, and many branches of colorful friends.

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

We are all equal in the eyes of God, why not in the eyes of man?

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Wow! It was really cold here this morning. I know, if you’re up North, you’re probably thinking, “Yah, right!” But, it was only 28 degrees and windy. The only saving grace was the sun was out. So, when I went to do my greeting thing before 9 o’clock Mass, I said to myself…(I talk to myself a lot.) “I think I’ll wear my sock monkey hat today, and really make people smile.” I didn’t put it on at first, but I got really cold and thought, what the heck, it’s my birthday, and if you can’t be silly on your birthday, when can you? 

The kids all thought it was cool, and a lot of folks just said, “Nice hat,” and giggled on their way in the door. Mission accomplished!


Gospel, Luke 3:15-16, 21-22

Today’s Gospel was about the baptism of Jesus by John. The sermon was about how Jesus walked with the crowd and was baptized like everyone else, not seeking special attention.

My take on it… We all have our mission in life, our goals, our dreams. We don’t need flashing lights and marching bands to proclaim our good deeds. We are all equal in the eyes of God, why not in the eyes of man.  Just be good to one another, be honest, loyal, loving and kind. 


After Mass, I stopped at Sprouts to pick up some groceries, then stopped at Bonita’s house to wish her a happy birthday because we share the same birthday. Birthday sisters!

Then, I did my famous drive by. I called Sherry Murphy and said, “What ya doin’? Are you home?” She said she was just lounging around at home, then she asked, “Where are you?” I replied, “In your driveway!” She said, “Come on in!” (I do this to her all the time.) We chatted a while and she asked what I was doing special for my birthday. I didn’t have any plans, so she said, “Let’s do something!” Sherri put on her shoes and coat, and we went to the square for lunch. Don’t you just love friends that will just drop what their doing for you? Plus, they buy you lunch. 

We ran into our good friend, Laura Bartlett at Snug on the Square. (Laura, Sherri, and moi.) Her “Four Funny Females” show was on Saturday at MPAC, and her sister was in town visiting.  That’s what I love about McKinney, you always bump into friends.

(Forgot) Last night, I had stopped in Sweet Spot Bakery and visited with Kathy. Selfie time! Friends everywhere!

Today, after lunch, I came home, changed, flittered away time on Facebook, then went for a frigid walk. But, the  sunset was amazing and well worth the frostbite. My friend Jim told me how to get different exposures on my iPhone by just tapping and holding different lights and darks on the screen for better quality images. Did you know that? I didn’t. Pretty cool!

Here’s my sunset shots for tonight.



Amazing! A beautiful day, a spectacular sunset, wonderful friends, a fabulous birthday. Happy birthday to me! Yes, I’m 29…again…a couple of times plus some. 

Friday:) The FORCE, Flowers, and Friends

9 Jan

“Whether I fail or succeed shall be no man’s doing but my own.I am the force.” 

― Elaine Maxwell


Yesterday was spent with an early birthday celebration with friends. Today, the FORCE was strong with me, so I started out with an hour at the YMCA, riding the bike and working on the machines, a quick stop at the grocery store, then an hour walk. That was all before 1 p.m. My neighbor, Diane, invited me to lunch for my birthday, and we stopped at a couple of nearby shops. When I got home, the clouds started rolling in, so I decided to get another walk in before the rain.

When I was shopping earlier, I received a call from the florist telling me that a delivery was left at my door. My son, Matt, sent me a beautiful flower arrangement with a big Mylar balloon. I placed it on the table with my many birthday gifts and cards. The funny thing is, it isn’t even my birthday yet. 

You know what I love about my birthday? I get to celebrate all month because I have so many friends. So many people love me. LOVE is the greatest FORCE in the world, and the FORCE is strong with me.

Yes, the FORCE is strong with me. I am the FORCE. Thanks everyone! Love you!

Theme Song Thursday:) CELEBRATE

8 Jan

“Documenting little details of your everyday life becomes a celebration of who you are.” 

― Carolyn V. Hamilton


Seeing as I already document every little detail of my everyday life, I guess it becomes a celebration of who I am. And you know what I am? I AM LOVED! I even have a bracelet that says so.

My daughter-in-law picked this out for me. (I just love saying daughter-in-law. It’s only been 6 months.) She is so sweet.

Today, I had the pleasure of celebrating my birthday with some of my girlfriends. We went on a field trip to Van Alstyne, had lunch at The Whistle Stop Cafe, and walked around to the various shops. I ate too much, received too many lovely gifts, laughed too much, and purchased too many nonessential items. But HEY, I was celebrating my “29th” birthday! Oops, a couple of those and more.

My birthday isn’t for a few days, but what I love about having so many friends is, I get to celebrate MANY, MANY times. Pretty much all of January.

Lots of presents to open. I’d show them all, but that would take all day. A beautiful vintage whiteware bowl to add to my collection, the heart locket necklace I’m wearing, hand-made soap, stationary, fine markers, a bracelet, a cute plaque, and little cakes, and I’m sure I forgot a few things. Then, Karen bought my lunch, and Sherry gave me tickets and invited me to join her at the rodeo in Fort Worth. I am one lucky Texas girl! 

Sherry and I are going to the rodeo, yee-haw!

We saw this  adorable dog that was dyed these colors. That’s not a costume or clothing. That’s  his real fur, dyed with a natural plant-based dye. So funny!

…AND CELEBRATED OFTEN! Fortunately, I get to celebrate often.

Some very special friends! A very special celebration!

Monday Morning With Michele:) Happy Birthday!

28 Sep

The year you were born marks only your entry into the world. Other years where you prove your worth, they are the ones worth celebrating.~Jarod Kintz


Today, the TOTS (Table Of Talented Sisters) met for breakfast to celebrate Michele Bernard’s birthday. Michele has been “burning the candle at both ends” lately, and it’s difficult for her to find time to visit with girlfriends. But, a brief birthday breakfast was arranged, complete with handmade or thoughtful presents. Gotta love girlfriend gifts !

 “You’re kidding, Sherry ! You started these succulents from cuttings? ”

We love you , Michele !!!