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Dishin’ with Dody: Happy Birthday, Birthday and More Birthdays

The past few weeks have been incredibly busy and amazingly fun.  The adventures began a few Saturdays ago with my daughter and I having a facial.  This was part of her birthday present from June, but we finally found time for the appointment.  It was the day of my birthday and lunch was planned with my family.

I had told my husband only days earlier that I did not want a party.  Mike replied saying, “What about your children?  You know they will want to do something.”  “Absolutely,” I agreed.  “We can have lunch somewhere together.  We can go to one of their houses or I will cook for everyone.  There is nothing that I enjoy more than cooking for my family, but I do not want a party!”

So lunch was planned for a restaurant that served one of my favourite foods…Middle Eastern.  After the relaxing facials, Kristie and I headed to purchase some final touches for the birthday party of my number three grandson, Austin, whose celebration was that same night.  The shopping center was in the same area as the restaurant.

I had bought clothes and make-up with me, to become more presentable than I had been for the facial.  After walking around in 108 degree heat…a change of clothes would have done very little to improve my demeanor, so Kristie and I walked straight to the restaurant.  You guessed it…“SURPRISE!!!” and it was a lovely surprise to share this day with many of my family and friends.

Then it was on to prepare for Austin’s party.  It was a 1980’s theme complete with clothing, trivia and food of the era. The 80’s seemed like only yesterday to me, but for one born after the decade, it was history.  We laughed for hours!

The next birthday was my husband’s and his son and wife, Dave and Kera, came to share it with him.  That party was at my eldest son’s in the Big Thicket of East Texas…a wonderful place filled with animals, trees, catfish pond, and open spaces.  We surprised Mike with a bar-b-que and another amazing day.

Then the four of us headed to San Antonio.  I have lived in Texas my entire life and know good Mexican food, but what we experienced for the next few days was the best I have ever had.  Hopefully some new recipes will come from this trip.  If you have a birthday party or bar-b-que to attend, this broccoli salad is a perfect dish to take.

Broccoli Salad


  • 2 heads broccoli
  • 12 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
  • ½ cup red onion, diced
  • 1 cup raisins
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 Tbls. apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup sugar
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Wash and trim broccoli.  Cut into bite-size pieces.  Place in a large bowl.  Add bacon, onion, raisins and sunflower seeds.  In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients, stirring well.  Add to broccoli mixture and toss gently.






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