Happy Birthday Mom

Today is Mom’s 78th birthday.

Okay…legally it would’ve been her 77th.

Oh man…she would’ve been so annoyed that I was announcing the actual year.


I so wish that she was still physically here with us so that I could call and sing Happy Birthday to her….among other things.

Y’all that’s a true mother’s love to have to endure my singing….


And I wish that we could take her out to dinner and dote on her.

Well actually, there first would be an Egg Souffle from Panera for breakfast. Those became Mom and Dad’s favorite when they moved to Florida and I have to tell you, they’re delish.


And then for dinner, we’d take her to the Cheesecake Factory where she would order a filet mignon–something she adored.

Cheesecake Factory?!

I know…

But back then, we LOVED it!

And Mom sure did enjoy her favorite foods…especially steaks!

So to celebrate her birthday every year, I have certain food traditions.

For breakfast, I’ll swing by Panera to grab an Egg Souffle. This morning, I grabbed a Spinach and Artichoke Souffle. 

Mom also liked the Spinach and Bacon ones, too….because bacon….

And because Mom was such a carnivore, I’ve cooked steaks in her honor these past few years.

Like Rosemary Garlic Ribeye, Korean Inspired Ribeye, Ribeye with Chimichurri and Filet Mignons.


But today, I thought it would be fun to have an early dinner and head on over to the Cheesecake Factory.

Honestly, since Mom passed, I may have only gone there 3 or 4 times….so it would be a nostalgic treat!

Mom's Bday
I got there so early for dinner that I didn’t even have to wait for a table. Which, despite how ginormous they are, is so freaking rare!

Mom's Bday
Mom wasn’t a big drinker (no idea where the 5 of us kiddos got our love for libations) but if she did order a cocktail, it would be a margarita.

Mom's Bday
And MAN!

She LOVED their bread (where do you think I got it from?!?)–particularly their wheat bread. It was only fitting that I had a fair share of that carbolicious goodness tonight.

Mom's Bday

The steak arrived!

I was so excited that I quickly sliced into it and took a bite.



It was ok. Not bad…not great.

Actually nothing that I remembered it to be. Memory recollections are tricky like that.

Mom's Bday

I kept thinking… “For real?! Our steaks are SOOOO much better! More flavorful, more succulent!”

I couldn’t help but have a twinge of regret that we never had the chance to cook for her like we are able to cook now.

She would have absolutely loved it.

Mom's Bday
But the truth is, my sibbies and I were only fair cooks when Mom was here.

Proficient….but maybe nothing too spectacular.

It took us losing our Mom to motivate us to challenge ourselves to be where we are today. We ached for the flavors that she was able to conjure up and because of it, we became committed to building food memories for our munchkins.

And although she may not be able to taste our foodventures during our monthly Family Dinners, I have to believe that she’s out there somewhere pleased and proud to know that it is because of her, that we’ve carried on this tradition now for seven years.

Mom's Bday
Don’t worry Mama. When we’re together next, we’ll make you whatever you want and the margaritas will be flowing.

Happy, Happy Birthday. We love and miss you so much  ❤



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