Posts Tagged With: party


Always Ready to Party

I pass this house on my bike rides either coming or going. I slow down as I pedal past. I try not to stare but it’s difficult not to. You see, it’s still a bit dark when I’m going past and strands of white twinkle lights light up the yard. That’s not something you normally see on an October morning.

I should mention it’s the back yard, not the front. I have no idea what the front of this house looks like. I should ride over that way and see sometime, I suppose. Many of these homes were modestly built out of cinderblock during the fifties, nearly identical inside and out.  Quarter or half-acre lots back up to this part of the trail which serves as a power line easement and passes backyards filled with dozens of stories and even more questions.

This particular back yard captures my imagination and holds it hostage.

Photo by Codo (The passion of the mariachi) [CC BY-SA 2.0 ( ], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo by Codo (The passion of the mariachi) [CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In the slowly brightening sky the outline of a mariachi band plays against the twinkle lights. More specifically, life-sized, rusty looking metal statues of a mariachi band face the back of the house. There’s no actual music. But the feeling of a song just ended hangs in the yard like a fine morning mist.

Several matching rust colored umbrellas stand at ease amid various patio tables. A small swimming pool reflects light on to heavy tied-back patio curtains.

In contrast to the perfectly manicured yard and setting, two vintage cars and a small lawn tractor sit nearby. A row of desert trees skirt along a white fence.

I imagine that on closer inspection I’d find a more than adequate barbecue set up, a fire pit and a mini bar.

The interior of the house usually stands dark and silent. Oh, how I’ve wanted to stop and take a photo. But that seems intrusive and paparazzi-ish. So I haven’t any images to share. I hold only a mental photograph I snap every single time I ride past. Somehow, I’m sure, a photograph wouldn’t capture the vision I see and feel.

While walking in the ordinary light of day past this home the magic pull of this back yard holds far less sway on me. It’s just another backyard in the sunshine. I’m not sure what it is but there’s something about the pre-dawn light that makes it all feel as if someone just sprinkled pixie dust over the entire site.

Photo by MzScarlett / A.K.A. Michelle from Missouri (Ice Tea) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo by MzScarlett / A.K.A. Michelle from Missouri (Ice Tea) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

In that early morning hour I sense I’ve always just missed the last snippets of a long night of whispered conversations, laughter, ice clinking in glasses and wet footprints leading away from the pool. I suspect I’ve missed out on serpentine stories and long jokes with intelligent punchlines. The only taste I get of the party just finished hovers lightly as the scent of creosote in the chill early air.

Do I think this household throws a party every night that last long into the wee hours? No, not at all.

What I do think is they have managed to capture the essence of a nightly party and hold it there in a quarter-acre space. It must conjure wonderful memories to look out from the kitchen window of that home and see ghosts of guests long since departed. What joy it must bring to remember, amid the twinkle lights, friendships and family, chatter and music, stars and breezes.

Clearly I’ve romanticized and idealized what happens at this home. Whatever really goes on, whoever really lives there, I don’t want to know. I’d rather keep what I’ve imagined and call it truth.

I wonder if I could create something similar. Surely I don’t need a metal mariachi band to capture that sense of excitement and wonder at daily life. Maybe something as simple as candlelight and music softly playing at dinner, even if it’s meatloaf on the menu. Perhaps a strand of twinkle lights draped along the patio and plugged in every night, party or not, just for the sake of celebrating life.

I’ll have to give this more thought. Is this just a Better Homes and Gardens or House Beautiful photo shoot I’ve stumbled on and can’t possibly recreate? Or is there something real there, something in the idea of celebration that I could blend into my daily walk and talk? It’s an intriguing idea.

Party on, my friends, party on.


“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.” 

– John Lubbock

Categories: Celebration, Family, Fun, good ideas, Holiday | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Party On!

As a wee lass, I measured my life by holidays.

The year began with useless efforts to stay awake until midnight on New Years Eve. Upon waking the next morning after a solid night’s sleep I began the countdown to Valentine’s day and Washington and Lincoln’s birthdays. (that will date me…)

English: A milk chocolate Easter Bunny.

I spent the next four weeks fruitlessly looking for a green clothing item for Saint Patrick’s Day. And was always confused about when I’d get to eat the ears off of my Easter Bunny and slowly savor my foil wrapped chocolate eggs.

Memorial Day meant school would be out for summer break. Mid-summer brought the fourth of July with camping and sparklers. Then Labor Day was the marker for the end of three long and blissful school-free months. The endless two month wait until the Halloween candy-palooza felt like a drought. Thanksgiving quickly followed and then Holiday of holidays, Christmas magic would arrive, marking the end of another year.

Another critically important celebration fell in August, the most important month of the year. Owing to the fact I was born and then yearly celebrated in August, it was my favorite month.

And now other reasons exist to mark my August calendar!

Just so you’ll be aware and not miss out on any epic parties or giveaways, I thought I’d clue you in as well.


Party Balloons

Party time! (Photo credit:

This week is National Aviation Week: well, technically, the 15th through the 21st, which is aptly enough always the week of Orville Wright’s birthday. That would be today, the 19th. The year was 1871. (Not sure how Wilbur, the older brother, would feel about that. Just for your information he was born on April 16, 1867.) I am eternally grateful for both of them and will celebrate this week appropriately by flying the (hopefully) friendly skies and saving myself a fourteen hour drive and the price of whatever repairs my car would inevitably require along the way. Someone should write a song to celebrate these guys. Seriously. (Haim? Jason?)


One of the best ways I know to celebrate is with cake. Cupcake Day, coincidently, falls on every third Monday of August. That’s today, the 19th. My DIL (hey there, Stephalicious!) bakes cupcakes of such magnificence it seems almost criminal not to eat more than one. Practically a national secret, her frosting recipe excites every taste bud with delight and deliciousness. The cake itself practically floats into your mouth. The combination of top-secret frosting and rich fluffy cake produces instant joy and relaxation. Makes me really wonder what she puts in them. Hmm.  Alas, until my plane ride later this week, her miniature cakes of wonder are out of reach. Happy Cupcake Day anyway!

Bison Goat

Not leaping, but a goat, nonetheless. (Photo credit: im me)


The last holiday I’ll highlight includes a shout out to one of my favorite restaurants in the Phoenix area, Flancer’s. Also known in my household as The Leaping Goat Place. August is, wait for the drum roll ******** (okay, the drummer stepped out for a minute) National Goat Cheese Month! I kid you not. There’s a webpage devoted to this monthlong cheese fest. Everything Feta and beyond exists there. To celebrate I’m thinking several visits to my favorite leaping goat are in order. Once for the “It’s about Thyme” sandwich. Once for the “Prickly Pear” sandwich. And once for something new. That’s three visits in less than twelve days. I might be getting a bit too wild here. 

I love my holidays. Except, as an adult Christmas isn’t as fun as it was when I was a kid. But that is a blog post of a different color.


Thanks to for their wonderful compilation of as they put it, “Unknown, Unobserved, Untraditional, Silly, Strange, Crazy, Odd, sometimes Bizarre, Goofy, Crazy, Dumb, Wacky, Weird, Wild, Respected and Traditional Holidays or Observances mostly only in the United States.” (Cupcake Day is an  Australian Holiday.)

Check them out. You might find even more reasons to celebrate in your year.

Categories: Food, Fun, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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