Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Birthday girl

One of the main reasons for visiting Western Australia most recently was to help Mum celebrate her 80th birthday.  I can hardly believe my Mum is 80, she can hardly believe it herself.  My sister and I had discussed ideas for the afternoon tea birthday party before we hit W.A. and I was able to do some baking in the first week of my visit and pop the goodies in the freezer and freeing up the kitchen for other baking and preparations closer to the big day.  My courageous sister brought with her in her luggage on the plane from Melbourne, about twelve of her mix and match fine bone china tea cups, saucers and plates.  They were so pretty on the table and there is nothing quite like sipping a cup of tea out of lovely china.

I always fear there will never be enough food when I'm involved in catering but happily there was an abundance and rather a lot left over which meant we were eating very well for a few days after the party.  My sister made the most scrumptious gourmet sandwiches, sausage rolls, scones with jam and cream, and cup cakes.  I made chocolate and almond shortbread, cheese biscuits (an old family faviourite), lemon slice and a chocolate cake with jam and cream which didn't get touched.  (Desert for the next few days).  My cousins wife bought out a lovely slice too which we all enjoyed too.  There may have been something else but I can't remember.  We had tea and coffee and a fruit punch, the punch being another family favourite.

My sister decided to have fun with the decorations to which I agreed totally.  I mean you only get to be 80 once so it should be fun.  Polka dots featured quite heavily and were to be found on balloons, serviettes, paper plates for the kids and the serviettes, not to mention birthday candles.  Mum loves butterflies so this was also included in the decorating theme too.

Here are a few photos from the day.

Mum made her own cake, a carrot cake, the same recipe she makes every year for my brother and his family when they have their birthdays.  We finished decorating it though with a plain icing and candles including butterfly candles on the perimeter.  You can barely make them out but just in front of the 80 candle we placed some clear high heeled shoes as a nod to Mum's high heeled shoe wearing days of the past.  She loved heels.


This beautiful butterfly was painted by my nephew for his Grandma's birthday.  It was done in acrylics and is spectacular.  In my sister-in-law's family there are some very talented artistic members and it certainly shows.
So that was our day.  Full of fun, family and friends.  We were able to surprise Mum with the attendance of an old family friend from teen days, a pen pal she had been writing to since she was 16.  The look on her surprised face was priceless.

All in all it was a lovely day and the most important thing was Mum was surrounded by family and friends to help her celebrate.  

Anne xx


  1. Sounds like you all had a beautiful day with your Mum. Happy Belated Birthday to your Mum!

  2. It sounds like you all had a wonderful day, what a fabulous age! I think your sister was very brave too, it certainly did take some courage to pack up a selection of bone china to travel on a plane!

  3. What a very lucky mum.
    Love from Mum

  4. A birthday afternoon tea sounds quite delightful! I understand the fear that there won't be enough food ... I fear the same, but sadly also have that fear when making my own evening meals - I always over estimate! The decorations and table looked lovely, I hope your mum had a wonderful day and what a fantastic surprise the old friend being able to attend must have been for her - such a memorable day! The butterfly painting is fantastic too.

    Thanks for your recent comments. It's nice to hear from you and read a little about your time at home, I was only thinking about you at the weekend and wondering if you were still with your mum or back home!

  5. A very happy birthday to your mum, looks like you all had a wonderful time.

  6. What a lovely celebration & scrumptious food !

  7. Sounds wonderful.. what a lovely photo of the birthday girl.

    That butterfly is gorgeous what a talented nephew you have. x

  8. Looks like your Mum had a wonderful 80th Birthday party and a very special day!
    Gill xx


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