Big celebrations for someone small & special.

This is an unwritten post.

Right, well obviously, if we’re getting technical, then that’s not true, because here I am writing it and there you are reading it. What I’m saying is, this post is tardy and should have been written months ago.

You see, back in January, something big happened to someone I know. My Mum hit a milestone of the Diamond Jubilee kind and celebrated her 60th birthday. And that’s worth writing about. So here we are.

It’s not everyday that one’s mum turns 60, so naturally it had to be suitably celebrated, a process that began with me using my excellent powers of persuasion (correction: using my whiny daughter voice to beg and plead, convincing Mum that it would be rude not have a party, as her friends would naturally expect it…) to sell Mum on the idea. What started out as the party to end all parties, concluded at an intimate Summer lunch for 30. Sold! (proving simply that even at 29, the whiny daughter voice still works…!)

It’s a well-known fact that food is my thing (something you could say I inherited from my mother!), so once we had the date locked in and a list of party prep tasks written, we got down to business on planning the menu. Kind of a big deal. There was some to-ing and fro-ing, but in the end we settled on our celebration summer menu.

Smoked Almonds
Melon & Prosciutto

Homemade Salmon Gravlax with horseradish cream
Rare Roast Beef with mustard béarnaise

Colourful Cous Cous Salad
Roasted Red Capsicums
Pea & Mint Salad

Lime Tarte
Brownie Cake
Biscotten Torte

Cheese Plate
Coffee & Tea
Chocolate Dipped Candied Orange

A combination of lifetime favourites (smoked almonds, Biscotten Torte), Summer classics (melon & prosciutto, bruschetta), newly discovered loves (Salmon Gravlax, pea salad) and staple “famous” recipes (beef & mustard béarnaise, Cous Cous salad), we covered all our bases & all levels of gourmet enjoyment!

With the menu done, the shopping list shopped, the seating plan sorted, flowers & decorations complete & a pre-party running order created (I don’t work in events for nothing!), all that was left before the birthday girl could take to the spotlight, was for us to get our cook on.

Desserts were first…

Limes for tarte

Lime Tarte

Shiny brownie mixture.

The now-famous Biscotten Torte.
Apparently this was Mum’s childhood favourite, but what I want to know is, where was it in my childhood? Well, it’s now a firm adulthood favourite…

Then on to salads…

Capsicums to be stuffed & roasted

Putting the gents to work, shelling pistachios

Colour & cous cous

Peas, mint & fetta

Then the protein…

Cow before…

Cow after…

Salmon Gravlax.
Cured at home by the birthday girl. A nod to our Swedish family.

The celebration spread

The pre-lunch nibbles & post-lunch indulgences were kindly supplied by a couple of lovely party guests who wouldn’t take no for an answer!

It was a feast fit for an Elizabeth.

With spectacular flowers created by Mum, alongside lovingly polished family silver, a wall of photos and the party girl herself, the room was transformed.

And after a week of rain, on party day the sun was shining and our little village hall sparkled in the party glow.

So did Mum.

(see, she is only little!)

Adorned with a “Sixty & Sexy” sash, presented with a bottle of passion pop and celebrated like any old-duck should be, my little Mum had the time of her life.


PS – some of you will read this, but many of you won’t… to all those fabulous ladies (and gentleman) who helped to make Mum’s day so special – whether it was wrapping prosciutto round melon, laying planks to save ladies shoes from the mud, keeping glasses topped up, helping to wash-up a million plates, providing moral support to a frantic party-planning daughter or simply spoiling the birthday girl with your love – I can’t thank you enough. You are wonderful.


About Tablecloths & Talking

Food. Friends. Fun. Preferably together. I love to eat, drink & be merry. I love to write. Tablecloths & Talking is me writing about doing the things I love.
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2 Responses to Big celebrations for someone small & special.

  1. Ween says:

    Love love love xx

  2. Billie says:

    Well done Lizzie, absolutely gorgeous spread. You & Libby are very talented people. Honestly I have always said it, your mum should open a florist store.

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