Monday, May 26, 2008
betty's birthday celebration!

Betty's Birthday "Ladies Who Lunch" was just wonderful! The only disappointment was that the "Surprise" Gentleman never got there. He was tied up in meetings with lawyers all afternoon....Well, maybe next time.....But.....we had a terrific time though the weather was quite bizarre.....we even had some sprinkles yesterday....! And in fact it was raining in certain parts of the city---I could see it from my windows....! Above is the lovely Bridget Hanley talking to our Birthday Girl....Because it was rather overcast at times there wasn't a lot of light coming into the living room as there usually is....But that did not dampen our spirits one bit.Betty's cousin, Carol Smith, had flown down from San Jose in the morning just to spend Betty's Birthday with her.....and that made the Luncheon extra special....By The Way: Betty wears these visors to protect her eyes from the sun and light because she has Macular Degeneration. A few of the other "Ladies" arrived..... There are Seemah Wilder and Dianne Travis....two of the 'regulars' of the 'ladies who lunch'....We DO have a good time together.....
Bridget and Barbara Mallory having had a fun conversation..(see picture below), now had joined with the rest of us to have our little appetizers before going into the Dining Room for Lunch.... After a private conversation that obviously had some laughs attached to it...They were discussing the Musical of "The Brady Bunch" that Barbara's husband Lloyd Schwartz has written, which will open at Theatre West on June 6th, I believe.....Lloyd's father, Sherwood Schwartz created "The Brady Bunch".....'back in the day', as they say.....And this will be The World Premiere, at Theatre West....Barbara is in it...... The last of our little group of eight is Jo Gorman....over on the left in that picture above....Jo used to live across the street from Betty & Larry (Back in 1962)....and in fact lived their for years and years with her dear husband, John....Then they moved about three-quarters of a mile away, still in the same area and so they remained neighbors, though no longer right across the street....Below.....the "table"....Doesn't it look pretty? And in front of each place were these little party favors, courtesy of M&M's.....Aren't they Darling? I loved the idea of personalized M&M's, and thought it most appropriate for Betty's 89th Birthday.....Here below, a little bit closer look..... The Menu for the day was a Cobb Salad.....And not just any old Cobb Salad, but the true original recipe for this scrumptious salad.....Finely Chopped, that was how it was made back at The Brown Derby and how it should always be made if you are going to call it a Cobb Salad.......It was truly delicious! I love mixing and matching China....I love those Luncheon plates and I absolutely adore those yellow cups and saucers....Here is a really close look at those..... These are all hand painted....And just so very beautiful....I used two other styles of cups that day, too, as well as a completely different dessert plate.... So here is the Birthday Girl with Dianne next to her and then Seemah.... And then....Barbara, Bridget and Jo.... And Carol next to Jo...And I was next to Carol with Betty on my left....that is my luncheon plate right there at the edge of the was time for "The Cake"! We need a closer look at this Beautiful Cheerful Charming Chocolate (what else) Cake.....! It was incredibly decadent and absolutely delicious beyond words....Yummy, Yummy, Yum Yum! Betty blew out those sweet little candles and Will cut up this lovely cake so each of us could have a very generous piece..... And doesn't it look pretty on that very beautiful elegant plate....Oh I love pretty China so very much....And I love what is on it, too! (lol).....Then, it was time for "The Presents"..... I don't know anyone who it is easier to find a present for or who enjoys all the presents she gets, more than Betty..... And of course, we all enjoyed watching her open each and every present.... This 'top' was from Bridget...Half kidding and half serious...Betty loved it! We all enjoyed each present-opening almost as much as Betty did....She got a lot of wonderful things....all unique and all different..And none of us had spoken to the other about what we were getting her....Amazing, really. This was a fabulous Make-Up mirror that Seemah gave Betty...knowing her eyes-sight is not so great, it is a 10x.....Betty looked in it and said, how wonderfully awful she! The thing about Betty is...she can make fun of herself and laugh just as hard as any of the rest of us..... And above....Jo, enjoying the 'joke' as much as all the rest of us....And below, Betty is holding the beautiful big soap that Jo gave her..... This soap is so huge, it will last Betty a very very long time....None of us could figure out the scent of this soap, by the smelled like something else to each!I'm saving Dianne's present for last....She included a very special card for Betty.....I know that Betty loves Kaleidoscopes and has quite a large collection of them.....I found a really sweet one on the Internet and everyone seems to love it.....But especially Betty, and that was the most important person to me. And what pleased me most was that she could see it really really well....! That was the one thing I was concerned about, and I am pleased to say, she had no problem....considering it is such a little one.....Here are a few other people enjoying the Kaleidoscope.....Seemah above.....Bridget, below..... And here below, the wonderful little colorful 'case' that Barbara Mallory gave to Betty..... You can carry Music in it or scripts or 'sides'....It is so very pretty!
Betty's cousin Carol brought a couple of Orchids down from SAn Jose for Betty....she brought them directly to Betty's house so I have no pictures of them. But knowing Carol...I am sure they are quite spectacular....! Now, here below is the beautiful hand-made ceramic box that Dianne gave Betty.... And there was this very special card that Dianne included with her gift.The outside of the card was beautiful, as you can see...but it was what was inside the card that really was quite wonderful and though it was given to Betty by Dianne and her husband Mark, I think these words could have been said by any one of us...or really all of us. Do click on it to make it big enough to read..... So....this was the "Ladies Who Lunch" for Betty's 89th Birthday....It was a glorious afternoon for a glorious and special person who just happens to be a treasured friend to all who were here.....And here below, Betty is in the car getting ready to go home. Sitting on the floor of the car between her legs is a beautiful arrangement of flowers sent to her by the third of our "Spoon River" trio of women, Joyce Van Patten..... There is nothing like these long-time friends, my dears....My friendship with both Betty and Joyce goes back 46 years.....All the experiences we have shared....the good, the bad, the sad, the funny, the very happy times.....these are invaluable memories that nothing can take away. And on Thursday, we made another Memory.....

More To Come......

P.S. Look who came out after everyone had gone home except Dianne.....Yeah....Another treasured friend....this one just happens to have four legs and is covered with white fur and has the Bluest Eyes you will ever see.....

Cherish all those you they two footed or four footed.....


More to come.........

Links to this post:


had this to say:

be it birthdays or luncheons, you chronicle your times together so well Naomi..

Betty looks fabulous, she may joke about her looks but I could only hope I look that good BEFORE I hit 89!! sheesh!

It's always so nice to see friends together having such a good time!!

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 4:33:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

As ever, I get such a wonderful sense of comaraderie from this post. As you said, born of such a wonderful long history of shared experiences. These lunches always seem so warm and full of friendship and joy. I am glad that Betty had such a lovely birthday.

I do hope that this wonderful lunch lifted your spirits. Friends, flowers and chocolate cake. Sounds like a good combination to me :)

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 4:48:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Ahhh..what a sweet post Naomi!! I'm so glad Betty had such a nice birthday. She looks great!!! The china is all so lovely. I love your cups!! I have a small collection of china cups and saucers.

That cake looks so yummy!!!

Great to see Sweetie again too!!

Thanks for sharing your lovely luncheon/party with us. I loved it!!!

Thanks for your sweet birthday wishes also!! xxxoxxx

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 6:36:00 AM PDT 

Anonymous Lyn M.
had this to say:

How I love and look forward to seeing this Post Every Year. I get to spend a little vicarious time there with all of you. In the "Sarah Plain and Tall series, Sarah refers to her aunts as "The Treasures" and I do believe that The Ladies Who Lunch are among the most Treasured of Betty's life and each other's.
Thanks Naomi for sharing these Treaured Memories with all of us.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 7:10:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a truly wonderful event in honour of your friend Betty... a Special Birthday Lunch with all those lovely ladies. The table is most impressive, I love the china and the cutlery. And what a fabulous cake, so colourful.... wherever did you get it? A shame that the "Mystery Gentleman Guest" wasn't able to attend the celebrations, but it looks like you all had quite enough fun without him! I would have loved to be a fly on the wall and listened to some of those animated conversations.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 7:11:00 AM PDT 

Blogger PI
had this to say:

Wow I'm first and I have sooo enjoyed the party. Everybody looked great but I wish there had been a photo of you.
Two questions: the food looks delicious but I'm not familiar with the salad and would love to know the ingredients and is that expresso in the cups or rum:)
It all looked so pretty - you really did them proud and is there any cake left????

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 8:08:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Thank you so very much for sharing a very special day with your readers. Everything was perfect. I love the table - mixing china is so much fun and makes an interesting setting. The guest of honor and guests were lovely and wearing beautiful smiles. Did you, perhaps, ask the gentleman server to snap a picture of the group together - including you? If so would you consider pasting it?

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 8:19:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:


What a wonderful day you all had! Your house looks so pretty and inviting...and I love the china - all of it so different and pretty - and very delicate. The cups and saucers are really bright and cheery. I have often wondered how mugs replaced beautiful and delicate cups and saucers...

BTW, I will be boarding the next plane out to try that awesome looking Cobb Salad. It is one of my very favorite salads - but, I don't believe I've ever had it served like it was orginally intended...and orignally served. So, we really must do lunch!!! (Big grin!!!)

I see Sweetie got into the action, too...

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 8:33:00 AM PDT 

Blogger Mar
had this to say:

The Ladies Who Lunch truly know how to party with style! Love your pictures, the bday girl looks fantabulous :) and everybody seemed to have had just a great time. I only miss a picture of you among your friends. Next time! Your china is very pretty too.
Too bad the gent couldn't make it, he missed the most delightful birthday cake! and the nicest company.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 9:06:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

It looks like you had a marvelous time.

BTW, didn't Sherwood Schwartz also create Gilligan's Island? If so, he's responsible for about 95% of my childhood television viewing.


Monday, May 26, 2008 at 9:07:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a beautiful set of photos to commemorate a special day with long-time friends. Really wonderful to see it and share in it. I love how these ladies all look likr gun, are women of a certain age and yet are all beautiful. Betty is gorgeous and a true example of aging gracefully.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 9:14:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

That was wonderful!!!!!

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 9:25:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

We should all look so good as you ladies celebrating birthdays this year!

Thank you for the peek into the birthday party - it felt like I was eavesdropping.

Best wishes,

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 10:52:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Naomi, I think that is the prettiest table you have set for a luncheon in all the photos you have shown us! I love that china and the blue glasses - so cheerful! Betty looks well; too bad that Joyce couldn't be there. What about Lee? I thought she would be included.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 10:59:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Betty's birthday was an absolute smash! Everything looks wonderful and that cake, out of this world!
Betty looks beautiful, I love the flower on her visor.
And Sweetie came out! What a nice surprise & perfect ending to a perfect day. Did he hide in the closet?
You have outdone yourself, Naomi.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 1:07:00 PM PDT 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

A very HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Betty!
Gosh, I love when you post these....I remember last years party for her and once again, with your wonderful photos and capturing the moment, I feel like I was right there with all of you.
Your table looked spectacular! Loved your china and crystal!
Such a treasured group of wonderful female friends you have, Naomi. You are very fortunate! And I know how you do treasure them.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 1:36:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

What a wonderful post. You have the ability Naomi, to make us feel like we were right there with you and 'the ladies'.

You seem like a special group of friends who enjoy each others company, conversation and Cobb salad! Lol!!

Ooo I look forward to what is happening on Thursday...

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 2:22:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

What a beautiful setting for a wonderful lunch! Your friends seem to really be enjoying the day and each other.

I hope someday to entertain like you. Right now we stick to paper plates and keep the good china in its cabinet.

A lot of our guests are under the age of 10!

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 2:33:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

You ladies are the epitomy of maturing gracefully. I'm so glad I visited your blog. There's nothing better than good times with good friends.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 2:46:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

A very well-done memory-maker Ms. Lady. Give yourself a pat on the back.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 3:41:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I love your Ladies who Lunch posts - especially the photos. :) And Betty looks terrific!

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 5:15:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

This reminds me of the Teapoets Society Tea parties here in Floyd. I love that china! And that cake. Everyone looks beautiful. Your house is so full of light ... and love.

PS I noticed that one letter was yellow, an O. and the rest was green??

Now I want some name M&M's.

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 6:42:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Absolutely delightful to say the least Noami and it seems as if I was there sharing this wonderful celebration with all of you :D

Cheers to Betty!!

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 7:51:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

The table looked fabulous, I loved the colours and the china you choose. The cake looks absolutely divine.
I love reading "the ladies who lunch" posts so much.
May you all have many more lunch dates together.
So are you ever going to tell us who the mystery gentleman was ?

Monday, May 26, 2008 at 11:31:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

What a wonderful party for a great woman. I send my greetings with a big hug to Betty - all the way from Norway!

Looks like you had a blast and what lovely table setting - I just loved those china.

Thanks for taking us with - really: some wonderful pictures of what happened on her day!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 12:47:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

So did I miss it or what? Who was supposed to be your mysterious male guest who couldn't make it to the party?

Such a tease, you are!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 4:30:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a great birthday luncheon...that had to be fun. And I am so glad Sweetie got to get in on the action too!

That Bridget reminds me so much of Ben Stiller's mom.

All the photos were great and it felt like we too were invited and that is always nice. And yes, we need to cherish all those we love.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 6:22:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a wonderful celebration. Everyone is so lovely and having so much fun. Thank you for sharing.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 9:15:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a fantastic time it looks that you all had! I love the way that your table was made up. And Sweety. It looks like his fur is coming back!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 9:15:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

What a wonderful celebration in honour of your lovely friend Betty! Love absolutely all those photos! All your friends looks great and have friends is priceless, isn't?

The table is gorgeous with beautiful china and delicious cake! All looks yummy!

Thank you for sharing Betty's Birthday celebration with us. I loved it! And I am so glad to see lovely Sweetie, too!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 10:33:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Betty looks great, hard to believe she's 89. I still just think of "All in the Family" every time you mention her. Loved that show.
And the Brady Bunch! The Brady Bunch! My favorite show when I was a little kid!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 10:43:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

That was fun, meeting your friends and Betty. She looks wonderful. But there was something I missed. I missed seeing Naomi. Are we going to see you later, maybe? I hope!!

Have a pleasant day.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 12:00:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Dear Naomi,
I do not what to say. Your posts is so exciting and gives insight than nobody else ndo.
You know we are still in sorrow.
But you should know: The Church (400)_ not a seat free. We played J S Bach: Air. His best friend, a local pop artist (Jokke) who died the morning after when my son had a great
evening with him - the rest of the band played in the Church.
And - we brought out Rubens Coffin with live music created by Bob Marley.

I'll coming back to all the -- he saved several lives, without thinking of himself. Strong stories -


Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 3:49:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Where do I begin? The plates and cups are beautiful. Your home looks warm and inviting with an exotic flair, a treat for all those wonderful ladies. After reading this post all I can taste is chocolate, from Betty's personalized M & Ms (nice touch, btw!) to the decadent chocolate cake in all its happy colors.

I can tell Betty wasn't the only one having a great time. I love her comment after looking in the mirror. She must be a ton of fun to be around and celebrate with. I wish her and her lunch friends many more happy birthdays together.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 5:56:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Dear Naomi,
What a wonderful day with your dear friends. A truly excellent celebration for Betty's Birthday !

The different china setting s were lovely, the flowers, the food - you truly have a gift for entertaining with style :)

The aura of cameraderie, enjoyment and appreciation come through so clearly - the pictures are almost as good as being there !

Loving Annie

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 6:59:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Oh how beautiful those photos are. They are so full of love, life and warmth. It's a pity I didn't see you. Oh of course your plate at the edge of the table. That wasn't enough for me. I had to see you. Betty is so lucky to have friends like you. When someone becomes old, friends, family are so very dear to them. The cake looked so lovely. BTW, I've enlarged the card and the words were just so perfect for Betty.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 7:45:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Another great party at Naomi's house! That looks like such a fun time. I didn't know the original Cobb Salad was chopped like that. That's the way I like salad! I was almost drooling looking at it. Maybe I was reincarnated from someone that had the original. When I receive my salad at a restaurant, I immediately start chopping it up and my husband always looks at me like I'm picking my nose at the table!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008 at 10:43:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Naomi- wonderful, wonderful photos, I felt as though I was right there with you. Betty looks so pretty. I truly enjoyed reading this and the lovely photos. Everyone looks so happy as well.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 12:18:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Naomi, Betty looks fabulos at 89 years old. I just love her hair and I also like wearing those visors to keep the sun out of my eyes too. She is very lucky to have such good friends around her for her birthday. I think it is wonderful that you hosted her birthday luncheon....Sweetie is a smart kittie, hiding during the party. Our kittie hides when the grandkids come over. They chase her around and she has to hide out of self

I'm glad that you had so much fun!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 3:35:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

You didn't tell us who the mystery guests was supposed to be!!
The table looked so lovely, and I'm sure the TRUE cobb salad and divine chocolate cake were scrumptious.
I like how Betty looks in her visors. They are a cute accessory for her, even if they are serving a purpose for her vision.
She had a delightful day with her friends, and I'm sure she enjoyed every moment.
Thanks for sharing this special day with us.
Your friendship with Betty is truly a treasure.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 12:51:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Wow! Looks like a fun birthday party! I wanna piece of that cake. It looks way too delish! And the M&Ms were too cute!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 6:21:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Naomi.......I feel like i was there..........a butterfly on your wall taking it all in after reading your post. Girlfriends are the best aren't they??

My Mom has a group of friends who were actually meeting for lunch today....they've been together for a long time and have celebrated and consoled together. They call their little group "the Blings" and when they get together they have such fun swapping stories and little gifties....usually homemade and not "blingy" at all.

My grandmother also had a group of girlfriends........the girls club. They began their club when they were in their teens and continued on into their nineties!

Betty looks like she had the BEST day.....bravo to you for pulling it all together. It looked so wonderful.

ps. I'm so sorry to learn about your loss.....losing someone so close as Hanna is so heartbreaking. I don't know if we ever really get over it until perhaps we meet again in heaven.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 at 7:27:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Thank you for sharing these fabulous photos - such a lovely afternoon, Betty is so blessed to have as wonderful a group of friends as she does and she looks as though she had a really special time.

I love the personalised M&M's btw, what a wonderful party favour!

Still dying of curiousity though as to who your gentleman friend was going to be lol!!

Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 2:53:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Love the china, love the colors, the festive cake, and esp. the photo of Betty with the soap. She looks so happy. :) I hope I have such wonderful parties when I am enjoying those years. :)

And Sweetie... what a cutie.

Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 2:02:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I found you through Pat's blog. I really enjoyed sneaking a peak of your lovely party!
Thank you!

Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 8:48:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I remember Betty's celebration last year! You all really give lovely gifts and celebrations. I did, however, get sidetracked when I saw the cake. Did it taste as great as it looked? Yumo!

Hey, check out the *celebration* at the pupper's site. You will laugh! :)

Saturday, May 31, 2008 at 3:39:00 PM PDT 

Blogger VV
had this to say:

Thank you so much for sharing Betty's birthday celebration with us. She looks lovely still and the gifts were wonderful. I also loved the colors of your china!

Sunday, June 1, 2008 at 6:10:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I enlarged to soak in the art in the room. Tonight I will dream I was there, laughing, chatting, being.

Monday, June 2, 2008 at 2:29:00 AM PDT 

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Name: OldOldLady Of The Hills
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