We celebrated Nathan’s birthday on Friday. He started his day by getting up at the butt-crack-of-dawn (can somebody tell me the origin of that phrase?) to get ready for another fabulous day of teaching and I am pretty sure that I made him a lunch (it’s hard to remember anything before 7:00 am).
I spent much of his birthday at home with my laptop sending emails and doing other work-y things in order to earn my paycheck. For my lunch break, I went to the store to buy dinner.
Tangent here (surprise): it’s a bit of a daunting task cooking Nathan a birthday dinner. I couldn’t let him cook his own, though, and for some reason, I just didn’t think it would be as intimate if we went out to eat somewhere. I consider myself an able cook, but I know that my husband easily surpasses me in that skill. From what I can currently tell, though, I am still competitive with him in the baking category. Phew.
Back to birthday celebrations.
After work ended for the both of us, we were at home while I finished up the cooking and, after being pressed, let Nathan help out some.
Then Jennie brought her fabulous little crazies over to wish Uncle Nate happy birthday and they brought drawings for him. Beautiful little creations. The drawings and the children. And my husband.
Shortly after they left we ate the birthday dinner. The menu consisted of grilled NY steaks, mashed potatoes, roasted cauliflower and green beans with pancetta. Mmm, pancetta. I cannot for the life of me recall what we had to drink. Pink Powerade? It’s possible.
I made a total mess in the kitchen, between all of the cake making, garlic chopping, pancetta dicing, cooking, frying and waltzing.
I had all sorts of good intentions to clean it all up before the cake and ice cream party, but I didn’t quite get around to it. Instead, we just ignored the full sink as family showed up: Dad, Mick, Tracy, Emma, Abe, Jane, Kate, Ryan, Locke, Maren and Dustin. It was a good sized gathering for our little condo.
Pogi hid most of the time.
The cake turned out nice and moist (everyone’s favorite word) although according to Abe, it was “really rich.” Some of the kids washed down their cake and ice cream with popsicles.
Eventually, Kate went and found Pogi who surprisingly was happy to play with her and the feathered stick she waved about for him.
Little Locke made the most noise. He must have realized that it would take a lot of effort to be heard over the older children. You have to really fight for attention when there are Campbells around.
Eventually we said goodbye to family only to meet up with many of them again on Sunday night for dinner at Mom and Dad’s and more birthday cake. The family sang a rousing happy birthday (as always), we enjoyed red velvet cake, and then everybody took turns telling Nathan all of his amazing qualities.
At first, I thought it was a strange family tradition which we started only in the last few years. We go around the room and each person says something nice about the birthday person. Seemed like forced compliments, right? Turned out, though, everyone was actually sincere (with only a few random jokes tossed in for the sake of balancing out the cheesiness), and we’ve kept up the tradition since then.
I wonder if it surprises my parents ever that their kids actually like each other. Thinking back on all of the fights, punching, kicking sand in faces, broken bones, stitches, and banisters yanked out of the wall, it might seem a bit surprising.
Anyway, I loved hearing what everybody had to say about the birthday boy. Sometimes, my family really is quite nice.
Happy Birthday, Nathan! Lucky me to be married to such a young hottie.