Mom’s Party



Your Mother Should Know

Admittedly, today’s busy lifestyles won’t allow us to go back to the 50s or 60s, or even the 70s.  Even the 80s and 90s are looking pretty unattainable (no smart phones, remember?)

 But we can create a warmth in our homes that reflects a seemingly more innocent time of our lives — a warm glow that makes everyone chill out.

We’ve had many parties like that, including one we had for my mother’s 75th birthday, where we relaxed and let the younger crew take over!



I’ll Always Love My Mama

We wanted to do something special that sent the message from each of us: we’ll always love our mama.

We talked about various restaurants, but the four-generation family had grown so much that an outside party would be chaotic and expensive.




The House That

Built Me

We decided to have the party at – you guessed it – our house, the house that built my daughters and has been the site of a lot of parties!

My mom’s birthday is in January and we live in New England…brrrrrrrrr.

And so we decorated with sparkly white lights, evergreen, candles, a fire in the fireplace, and black and white photographs from her past (see below).

 Mom and me

Mom's 75th, Mom & Joan, little girls


Me and the bros....the 60sAbove, Mom (left) and Aunt Joan, who still complains that my mother always got the best dolls.  At left, Mom as a child wearing a dress and matching hair bow made by my grandmother.  Right, Mom in high school, looking just like the Straight-A Catholic School girl we’ve heard about through the years!

And below, her crew of four in 1968, Billy, me, Tom and Ken.





Scenes from an

Italian Restaurant

On the menu, served in the cozy atmosphere of home, were an Italian dinner, birthday cake and a rockin’ birthday punch.

In order to pay special tribute to a woman who means so much to so many, we passed the torch to the next generation – her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.



What I Like About You

Ahead of time, I asked each of them – ranging from a great grandchild who was just five to grandchildren in their late 20’s – to write a few sentences about what “Nana” means to them.

Your mother needs to know — your mother should know! — how much she is loved, and I knew that no adult could top the precious words that children and young people would share.



Mama’s Song

Mom's 75th, With Grandkids at Mom's 60th birthday

1991 Flashback. Among the collage photos used as decorations for my Mom’s 75th was this one from one of her earlier birthday parties.   My nephews (from left) are Zach, Ryan, Billy and Kevin.  Front row is LeeAnn (left, then age 5), my Mom, and Jill (then age 2).

When it was time for the presentation, the adults gathered in the dining room, my mother at the head of the table. The younger set lined up in the foyer and came in one at a time, from youngest to oldest.

Lights were dim, instrumental music was soft, a fire burned in the fireplace, and soft young voices followed by mature voices of young adults spoke heartfelt “what I like about you” words to their grandmother.  They hit it out of the park.

After each grandchild or great-grandchild read his or her note (in the case of the younger ones, the parents helped), he or she went over to my Mom to give her the biggest hug and a pink rose.

That made for a full arrangement at the end for her to take home — roses and love.

Simple idea, simple gifts — forever treasured (she still has the notes).

Next time you need a party idea to honor someone, consider the coziness of home along with the passion and talents of the younger generation. They are full of promise, creativity, always manage to surprise…and they’re our future Superstar Party Planners!


In family life, love is the oil that eases friction,

the cement that binds us together, and the music that brings harmony.

–Eva Burrows

Next: Surprise!

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