Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The 'Art of the Matter

(photo description: A birthday card, drawn by a child, with the words 'Happy Birthday' on one side and a drawing of a man in a wheelchair, wearing a hat, on the other.)

Joe had, essentially, two birthday parties.

On his actual birthday we were in Edmonton and had dinner with nephew Jason and his girlfriend Cindy. We hadn't seen Jason for a long while and we'd not met Cindy before but it didn't matter. We talked a lot. We laughed a lot. We ate a lot. It was the perfect kind of birthday celebration for Joe. It was relaxed and casual and a lot of fun.

While this was going on I was planning with Mike and Marissa a birthday luncheon with them and with Ruby and Sadie for the Sunday after we got back. It was supposed to be a surprise but when you are with someone nearly 24/7 on the road, that's nearly impossible. That, along with the little fact that I'm shit at keeping secrets like this, meant that Joe knew about the gathering. I'm glad, actually, because that meant he could look forward to it.

Sunday came and the girls came in carrying a cake that they'd made for Joe. It was beautiful, a marble cake with chocolate icing and blue piping. Ruby took extra pains to describe to us the delicate art of writing on a cake - it was lovely to see her bursting with pride over the job she did. Kids need to and ought to delight in jobs well done.

Sadie was terrifically excited to give Joe both of the cards that she made. One of them is pictured at the top of this blog. The cool thing about both cards is that Sadie, when trying to think of something that Joe loves to draw in the card, to make it super duper extra special, she decided to draw me. She gave him, in both cards, pictures of me that he could have.

"Look Joe, I drew you a picture of Dave," she said, showing him the picture in the first card, "see, he's in his wheelchair."

"Look Joe, I drew you another picture of Dave," she said, showing him the second picture, "Now you have two!"

She, like Ruby, was delighted with herself and her gift and her drawing. She'd figured it out all by herself, she knew exactly what to draw.

And she was right.

Joe loved the cake and loved the cards, both of them, from Sadie. He also loved the 'Scary Clown' card from Ruby that had all the numbers from one to sixty-two carefully written down so he could see exactly how many (many, many, many) years he's been around.

So, Joe's birthday has been well and truly celebrated AND now he's got two, not one but two, pictures of me that he can gaze upon with fondness.

Which I caught him doing.


Desiree Loucks Baer said...

I try to read your blog regularly and I need to tell you that this has been one of my favorites. I have had the pleasure to meet Joe and found him to be an incredible and gentle person. I am glad that you were able to celebrate his birthday twice. Even more so, it is a testament to you both that the girls both are so aware of the love that you share. Congratulations to Joe and You.

Jayne Wales said...

Lovely story about lots of love all round and a nice thing to read before my journey home in the dark. Love xxxx

Anonymous said...

Joes favourite thing: Dave!

Children are great!

Happy belated birthday, Joe!


Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt said...

Happy belated birthday, Joe - I've been on travel.

Hope it was as great as it sounded.

And many more.


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Cynthia F. said...

Ha ha ha, get a room you two!