Monday, September 24, 2012

50 Shades of Gray...yes, GRAY not Grey

It seems that sometimes a word - one word - fits several things going on in your life at that particular time.  I find myself chuckling because I have different people in my life that would use dramatically different words. I have some that tend to lean to the negative and would say the word is "crap." You know the ones, it seems nothing is going according to THEIR plans so it all wrong, or they seem to think most people are against them and they need to get all they can and most definitely look out for number 1. Those people tend to be exhausting. Then there are the people that would use the word "party," never down, always smiling, making the best of whatever comes their way. And although they are a hoot to be around they sometimes don't have any sort of a plan and it is like herding cats to move forward. They also tend to be exhausting.


I have a word that keeps popping up and it is "gray." Yes, I read the books, but this blog has nothing to do with a certain Mr. Grey. I am referring to the color "gray". It all started when I decided to paint my house. I thought it should be easy to find a coordinating color it's a gray brick with just a little wood siding in places and the trim. EASY PEASY my left eye! I had no idea there were sooooo many shades of gray, it seems every color has a gray spot on the old color wheel. But after much groaning and gnashing of teeth I managed to pick a I would say it's not celery, but not mint, but not really a sage. Maybe a light early non-red tomato green- at any rate, it's a lighter green. A beautiful lighter green over a very, very dark blue......I didn't think that one all the way through but managed to get it painted with some help from my very own handy man. Then the trim........oh, let's see, the trim is presently white sooooo let's go with black! yes, a good idea. [insert rolling eyes here]. But the end result - ok, not really "finished" BUT CLOSE!- is lovely.

 Another thing that has brought the word "gray" to surface is my birthday. Yes, a milestone- 50. (looking at my hair I'd say it's a completely different meaning to 50 shades of gray)  I really didn't have trouble with the idea of turning 50, I don't feel 50 and I don't think I look "old" so what's the big deal? Then the friendly AARP starting sending me stuff and although I'm sure they are just trying to be helpful, I could have done without those little reminders that almost jump up and scream, "Hey you, you might think you can pretend you aren't getting any older but you are so maybe you should consider stocking up on prune juice and putting a down payment on a rascal!" Sheesh.......

My kids and my sister took the task of planning a get together for my birthday. I started via the Prairie Band Casino in near Topeka (yes, I won 200+ on a penny slot machine, thank you birthday fairy for the good luck) and then we went on to Kansas City. A day on the plaza at the art fair, wow, $5,000 for a wooden armadillo? really? who knew?
MacKenzie, Brett and Molly
Me and my sister, Kelly
Me and "the baby"

We then we met for dinner at Buca di Beppo. If you haven't ever taken a big group there, you should. It's like being in a giant Italian family's house for the holidays. It's loud, it's family style and it's FUN! You walk through the kitchen to get to your table, unless of course your table is IN the kitchen, which is a possibility. We laughed and our waiter, Dave, played with us and even had some of the cake Jen and Aaron baked for me. It was just a hoot. I was surrounded by people I love and lots of laughter.
The whole motley crew!
Aaron and Jen - cake bakers extraordinaire!
A birthday kiss from the boys I birthed

After dinner we went to the Power and Light district to go to "the club". Can't remember which one we ended up at - it was something to do with a shark and thus it was totally legitimate for the bartenders to wear just board shorts and the women to wear bikini tops and daisy dukes. It was fun, but the black light extravaganza only emphasized the lint on my black sweater.  Us old people tried hanging with the youngsters as long as we could but I found myself wanting to ask many of the girls if they were mugged on the way in and part of their dress was stolen. OMgosh.... evidently short, VERY short and skin tight is the norm. And heels...I watched more than one teeter past us and I thought this would be a great place for a doctor to have a booth to deal with the twisted ankles I foresee. I decided the whole thing just made me feel older rather than younger and we gave the kids cab fare and went to seek out our hotel beds.

I suppose some people think that having a huge party with tons of people (some of whom really don't even want to be there or maybe that YOU don't want to be there) or a surprise party where, at the age of 50, isn't such a good idea (the outcome very easily a heart attack or peeing of the pants) is the best idea but I think a small get together with those that have all sacrificed something to be there is the most heart-felt. Sharing the love, sharing the laughter, sharing the milestone celebration and most of all sharing the memory.