Q-Day 77 – Birthdays in Quarantine


Five months ago V and I had planned to spend her birthday in New York, shopping, eating, and touring my university. Instead, we celebrated her 15th birthday quarantine-style. It was, like most of my endeavors, a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants affair. The only thing I planned reasonably in advance was requesting birthday cards from anyone who wanted to help make this day a little less dismal.

Over thirty people answered the call and she – being a lifelong collector of cards – was beyond surprised and thrilled. A HUGE shout-out to Everyone who made her day special! Except the two who put glitter in the envelopes, no shout-out for you. (Ha! Just kidding.) Honorable mention to the one who sent her a “naked guy” card. It was far funnier than you could have ever imagined. She was mortified. Especially when I looked under the flap. HIL-AR-IOUS.

I made Happy Birthday letters out of cardboard and painted them, and the morning of – I staked them in the yard outside the window. I took a picture and posted it on What Do You See From Your Window (Facebook) and she has received, to date, 1,501 reactions and 635 birthday wishes from around the world! All but seven of the 50 states and Puerto Rico. Greetings from: Aruba, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Dubai, France, Germany, Holland, India, Israel, Italy, Korea, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Netherlands, Norway, Nova Scotia, Pakistan, Romania, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, and England/UK. (Cool page – highly recommend.)

V decided we’d have cake for lunch and of course I thought of Zoom less than an hour before. We quickly sent out an invite to my parents and in-laws and Opac joined from his dad’s house. After, V and I delivered pieces of cake to two of her friends – the first time they’ve seen each other in ten weeks. All the precautions taken and it was 100% worth it. (The cake came from a bakery often used by my mom – always decadent and gorgeous. Thank you, MOM!)

Shopping in NYC was instead shopping online at some of her favorite stores and we had a fantastic early birthday dinner picked up from the restaurant with a hug from mom – homemade meatballs and tagliatelli, shrimp cocktail, scallops wrapped in bacon, Caesar salad, Chicago wedge salad, shredded pork tacos, shrimp and crap a la riche (angel hair in a light butter and garlic sauce), and Mediterranean chicken with Greek orzo and Greek salad. Hungry yet?

All in all, I’d say her Quarantine Birthday was a success under current circumstances.

My Quarantine Birthday was quieter and less eventful. Mom was the first to call me. Then Opac called me at the ass-crack of dawn (for him) and I asked him if he was feeling alright.

Todd woke me up unintentionally around 6:30 a.m. when he placed a bouquet of flowers on my bedside table and a two-pack of paper towels. (I’ve been hunting for paper goods and he went to the store at dawn and scored.) I also got jewelry and some other things ordered online. The sterling silver Prince sex symbol necklace might be my favorite.

I got phone calls from dad and Matt, V, and Neph, and dozens of well-wishes online. Both my kids are at their dad’s, which is okay with me, mostly. I had nothing planned anyway, other than enjoying my day off. (Original plan was supposed to be a large Memorial Day party.)

The in-laws came up so that Todd could take a look at a car issue they’re having and we sat out on the deck together and had burgers and potato salad. It was a hard-thought-over decision – they’ve been completely isolated and we felt it was a reasonably low-risk situation. They arrived fully outfitted in masks and gloves, which is how they roll, but for dinner we all took the masks off.

Overall, in light of everything, our birthdays were good. We have our health, our livelihoods, our families, our friends, vodka (well, for me), and some damn good weather. And then there’s those absolute bollocks dreams.

Today’s stats:

Number of words in today’s post: 865

Paper supplies: Scored last 4-pack of TP on Sunday! Todd found paper towels on an early morning grocery trip on my birthday PLUS the in-laws brought me a huge pack from one of the warehouse stores. Tissues are now available.

Hair: Todd cut his own hair and it looks really good. O is one more missed haircut closer to an afro, but he did shave that thing on his chin off. V has split ends but otherwise perfect. Mine is colored again, and growing out. Maryland has opened in “Stage 1,” so I could go get my hair cut.

Books read: The Goldfinch. Excellent, excellent read. Still wrapping up Stephen King’s On Writing. Very inspiring, although I have yet to write 1,000 words a day toward that novel I started nearly 2 years ago.

Alcohol: Abysmal. Again. Probably a good thing. Some of us need to lose weight.

Number of Silverfox anti-Trump posts: 8 (though two of them were re-posted twice.)

Today’s T-shirt: The journey of 85 t-shirts is nearing its end, but he doth protest too much. He’s been switching things up with Polo shirts. Who IS this man?


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