Wish Betty a Happy Birthday!

(This is a quick reminder that today is the last day to get my The Art of Building a Blogging career for the sale price of $50. At midnight E.S.T. it goes back to $199 for the 5 hours of recorded video and accompanying reference guides.)
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I’ve been talking about my mother Betty being 80 years old for the past 5 years. I’ve been lying. The truth is, Betty isn’t 80 years old yet. She turns 80 on Sunday. Betty Jean Bertelsen turns 80 years old on Sunday.

Betty !

This is Betty at a jewellery making course we took last year.  Betty is donning her “I’d rather be quilting face.”.

Betty-on-elephant

This is Betty on an elephant in Thailand.  Betty is donning her “I’d rather be making jewellery face.”.

 

Betty Jean Ledger, as she was known, prior to marrying the handsome Norman, was a bit of a handful. A wild child who jumped out of bedroom windows in the middle of the night to meet boys and even more frightening for her parents, almost became a nun. Those two things, being wild and being a nun, might seem counterintuitive, but when you think about it, nuns are pretty out there.   They wear all black, pray an extraordinary amount and definitely don’t spend a lot of time drinking martinis at the Casino.   Betty recognized early on she wasn’t cut out for the nunnery or any other occupation that would frown upon drinking and swearing.

So she became a switchboard operator.

She’s hung up her telephone several decades ago but based on the amount of times she calls me during the day I think she misses it.

So her 80th birthday.  Betty did NOT want a party. So no party.  There will be no 80th birthday party for Betty.  Just a BBQ with myself and my sisters and Betty’s closest friends, many of whom were also switchboard operators.  I’ll have to ask them how many times a day they call their children.

The party is at the house of Pink Tool Belt’s (who you can see here helping me build my chicken coop) because she has the biggest backyard. Not that we need a big backyard since this is a tiny BBQ and not a party.  I’ll be making some of the food and she and Fish Pedicure will be making some as well.  For whatever weird reason, Betty decided she wanted Back Ribs as her 80th birthday dinner.  How are we supposed to put on any kind of classy affair when everyone at the shindig is going to be sucking on their fingers and wiping BBQ goo out of their eyebrows. Do you know how difficult it is to have a normal conversation with an 80 year old man who has BBQ sauce in his eyebrows?  It’s hard.  It’s very, very hard. I mean it’s understandable they’d get a bit of sauce in there, what with 80 year old men having 2 foot long eyebrow hairs but it doesn’t make it any easier on the person looking at them.

Betty also wants Bacon wraps as an appetizer. So it’ll be your basic festival of pork. L’chiam and shalom.

I put myself in charge of the back ribs since I’m the only one in the family in possession of a bona fide smoker and an award losing BBQ sauce recipe.

I’m also going to make bruschetta appetizers and …. the cake.

The. Cake.

I started making the cake today.  If I do one element a day for the next 3 days I should be in good shape.

It’s a 9 layer, Naked Lemon Verbena sponge cake filled with homemade lemon curd, whole raspberries and vanilla Swiss Meringue Buttercream icing.   So that should be gross.

I came up with the cake with the help of chef Signe Langford. We talked it out over email.  I wanted something seasonal and fresh and preferably something I could use my strawberry jam with.  But I’m not using my strawberry jam. I’m making use of my lemon verbena plant instead, which is fine. I like lemon flavour over strawberry anyway and I’m REALLY excited to actually make something out of my lemon verbena plant as opposed to just walking past it, ripping off some leaves and shoving them up my nostrils.

I was thinking of making a potato chip cake actually, but 80 year old men also nose whistle when they’re angry and I didn’t want to get into that after the whole eyebrow thing.  80 year olds don’t want potato chip cakes. They want cake cakes.  With icing and a lot of beer.

The cake will be decorated with lemon verbena leaves, raspberries and fresh flowers from my cutting garden.  If you haven’t heard of a naked cake it looks something like this …

frances

 

Basically it’s a cake with no icing.  Not on the outside anyway, there is on the inside.  It was all the rage at weddings last year, so I’m nothing if not up on wedding cake trends from 2014.  Can’t call me out of touch.  This particular cake is a bit too much for me. It’s very LOOK AT ME I’M A CAKE COVERED WITH STUFF … ALL KINDS OF STUFF … I’M VERY SPECIAL, I AM!!  I’d like my cake to be a little more reserved. A little cooler.  This cake is trying too hard.  This cake is  Katy Perry.  My cake will be Lady Gaga thank you very much.

Something closer to this maybe …

 

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I think maybe this cake is more Audrey Hepburn now that I see it.

 

If I have time I’ll photograph it for you, but I imagine Sunday is going to be a bit of a shitshow trying to get everything ready, the ribs smoked, the cake assembled, the appetizers made, plus I’d like to get to my sister’s house early so I can laze around and kind of make fun of her while she cleans her already clean house.  She cleans her potato bin all the time.  This is a woman who has a perpetually clean potato bin.  If I get around to photographing the cake, I’ll put it up next Friday.  I’m off on Monday because it’s a holiday in Canada and although I did consider blogging on Monday I decided you all can suck it, I deserve a day off. For those of you who don’t speak Canadian, suck it means, You’re super special, but I need some time alone away from you.  You know. Where you’re not here, and I’m just alone and you are away.  From me.  

Since Betty’s birthday is on Sunday (when I don’t have a post going up) I thought I’d give those of you who are fans a chance to wish the 80 year old Betty (who passed her mandatory, “I’m really old and maybe should walk places instead”, drivers test today!) a Happy Birthday.

And for those of you who aren’t fans or don’t know who the hell this Betty person is, you can learn a bit about Betty  here and here and here in her 75th birthday post where you’ll learn more about the nun thing and also see a photo of her with the handsome Norman.

Let the birthday wishes commence.

Have a great weekend and keep your eyebrows clean.

 

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177 Comments

  1. peg says:

    Happy 80th Birthday Betty 😀

  2. Patti P says:

    Happy birthday, Betty. You are gorgeous! Enjoy every second of your special day.

  3. Auntiepatch says:

    Happy Birthday Betty from another Betty (me) AND former switchboard operator! Old switchboard operators don’t retire; they just pull the plug!!! LOL! Operator humor…….

  4. Debbie from Illinois says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!!! I hope you have a fabulous party with your family and friends!!!

  5. Becky says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! You give us younger spunky girls hope that the spunk can last into the golden years.

    May you have a year of health and happiness!

  6. Suzanne says:

    Happy birthday Betty! Have a roaring good time. Do all the things that embarrass your kids, and lots of cake and fireworks. What no fireworks? Well next week then. Woot woot!

  7. ronda says:

    best wishes for a great birthday Betty! from another Betty’s daughter.

  8. virginia says:

    Happy, Happy, Happy Celebrating!

  9. Marianne says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!!! Sounds like one heck of a non-party!

  10. Linda says:

    BETTY—Happy 80th from a 70th. You are an inspiration. I hope that you have an amazing b’day party with your amazing daughters (I have them too). Life is great! And I hope to wish you a happy 90th.

  11. Jennifer says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! You’re the same age as my mother, Barbara, but you’re far more spunky. I hope your small BBQ is a lot of fun. I do enjoy reading about the exploits of your daughter and your family. Best wishes for another great year!

  12. holly says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! All of the blogs your talented daughter has written involving you are included in my favorites.

    Have a great birthday with your friends and family!

    Best wishes from Holly in Arizona.

  13. Muff says:

    A very happy birthday, Betty! We celebrated my dad’s 79th yesterday – it was a great era!

  14. ardith says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! And many more. P.S. I am duly impressed by the two of you, women who are not afraid to break out the can of whoop-ass.

  15. Kath Porten says:

    Betty, I love birthdays, I hope you have a wonderful day!

  16. Pam says:

    Betty, I feel sure this will be the funnest 80th birthday you’ll ever have! I also think Karen is feeling a bit neglected these days and would really appreciate a phone call from you. 🙂 Have a happy cake day!

  17. Tammy says:

    Have a great birthday with your friends and family! You are an inspiration!

  18. Lynn Johannson says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY BETTY!!!!!! You’re an inspiration to us all!!!!!

  19. Kathleen says:

    The happiest of happy birthday’s to you, Betty. May your special day be filled with peace and love. May the rest of the year continue to be be filled with life’s richest Blessings.

    Karen, I snorted coffee through my nostrils at the “L’chiam and shalom” comment.

    Excuse me, got to clean my monitor now!

    OH, PS… you will be missed on Monday. Just because it’s a holiday there, means we have to suffer? 🙂

  20. Serduszko says:

    Happy birthday Betty!!! Sto lat!

  21. ruth says:

    Happy birthday Betty! You’ll always be 80 to me! You rock.

  22. Pati Gulat says:

    Happy happy birthday, Betty !!!

    http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=kprmdE3CNNQ

  23. Tracie says:

    Happiest of Birthdays Betty, you are a doll! And Karen, I don’t know what to say…you have the most incredible ability to convey humour and seriousness, in one fell swoop! I so wish I would have had the benefit of your advice in writing my mother’s eulogy, for her Celebration of Life this month. I was out of my element. Anyway, it went amazingly well, all things considered. We had bagpipes! Yah, it was awesome…As for your clean freak sister (sorry), I had one too! I so relished heading to her place to visit, knowing all the while she had a meticulously made bed that was screaming for me to jump on…drove her nuts! Family is awesome…bumps, bruises, and all. I guess I will be “sucking it” along with everyone else on Monday, minus the ribs, whoa is me…looking forward to Wednesday though, and it better be a gooder.

  24. Mama M says:

    Have a brilliant birthday Betty and I hope you chomp ribs like an animal, slurp sauce off your fingers, guzzle beer like a trooper and all in all enjoy being the Wild Child you still are!! Take advantage of everyone on your special day, kick back and do all the things Nicely Behaved Ladies dare not do!!

  25. Paula says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! A true testament to the lady you are, is the daughter you have 🙂 Congrats on the driving test ‘pass’.

  26. Anna says:

    Best Wishes, Betty! And I hope all your birthday dreams and wishes come true for your 81st year…

  27. Elmine says:

    Happy 80th Birthday Betty! I wish you health and happiness for many more years to come. With love, all the way from sunny (but very cold and windy) South Africa.

  28. Grammy says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! It’s not surprising that you were a Wild Child because your daughter clearly was reared by a mother who knows something about fun and fearlessness. Besides, Karen tattles on you all the time. Enjoy your nonparty and have a great next year.

    It was my birthday yesterday. I think they’re much more fun than they used to be. I suspect you do, too.

  29. Sam says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! Hope you enjoy your bbq (definitely not party) on Sunday. You are such an inspiration to us in how you live life to the full and you look fabulous for it. Many hugs from the UK xx

  30. Twyla Harkey says:

    Happy Birthday Betty from Oklaoma!!
    Have an awesome 80th!!

  31. Maureen Locke says:

    Happy Birthday Betty, enjoy your not a party but party like it is a party. 🙂 Please make sure Karen takes a picture of your cake and everyone eating ribs slathered with not award winning bbq sauce. May your day be filled with love, laughter, and perhaps a present or two.

  32. Terry Brittian says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! Hope you have a wonderful day.

  33. Diana says:

    All the Best from over here!!! Happy birhtday! I wish you all, what the others before me haven`t said yet!!! Have a great day.
    Diana

  34. Jenny W says:

    HaPpY BiRtHdAy Betty! I hear you are one Awesome Mom 🙂

  35. Cat Collins says:

    Happy birthday Betty and congrats on passing the driving test!

  36. Maura says:

    Bonne Fete Betty from Montreal!

  37. M says:

    Betty,

    Wishing you a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

    I want to be like you when I grow up!

    M.

  38. Laurie says:

    Happy birthday, Betty! Enjoy your day!

  39. Mare Pendleton says:

    In addition to birthday wishes for Betty I’d also like to say congratulations to you Karen, on having such a great mom, and such a great relationship with her. I read your posts and look at the pictures and I’m envious (in a good way – I’m glad for you!)

    Have a really great barbecue – it sounds like a blast! Happy B-day Betty!

  40. Cathy says:

    First of all Ms Betty, you and my guy have the same birthday so you’re in. Secondly Ms. Karen, get SOMEONE, ANYONE to shoot that cake!!!! Your neice, neighbor, random streetwalker…just shoot it!!!!
    Have a great 80!!!

  41. bonnie says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! Have fun with no “I’d rather be making jewelry” photo ops.

  42. Trish says:

    A ‘ Very Happy 80th Birthday Wish’ to Betty Jean…
    it’s obvious that you are living life to the fullest…
    enjoy this special occasion with your beautiful daughters and family and friends…

  43. magali says:

    Happy birthday Betty!!
    The post where Karen spins you around to determine the winner of a contest is still one of my favourites that I remember well!
    Enjoy all the pork!

  44. Leslie says:

    Wishing Betty all the best on her 80th. Hugs and kisses to her!

  45. Susan Stanford says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!

  46. maggie van sickle says:

    Happy happy day Betty. You are who I want to be like when I grow up. I am 70. Bahaha. Have a great day with your gals and your friends you truly deserve it.

  47. Phyllis Kraemer says:

    Betty, I wish you the best of days this coming Sunday!…Do all the things that are deserving of that special day, laugh lots, hug lots, drink lots, love lots and most of all ….eat lot of cake!! Then you can sit back for a moment…looking at those lovely daughters of yours..and pat yourself on the back for having raised three interesting, fun, amazing daughters!..Nice work Birthday Lady!! Have a great day Betty!

    • Mary W says:

      You just said everything I was going to – Karen makes her so endearing to us all with those vivid descriptions and ability to laugh at anything. Betty sure did a good job! I suspect I should have said Betty sure does a god job since no one really grows up in this family. Happy Birthday Betty!

  48. Vivian says:

    Happy Birthday Betty from Nova Scotia!

  49. Alana says:

    Hippo birdie two ewe, Betty! On an elephant? An elephant?! Oh my!

  50. Cheryl says:

    Happy Birthday Betty and many, many more!

  51. Karen C says:

    Happy Birthday Betty, wishing you the best on your 80th Birthday. Enjoy your little get together (not party) with your family and friends. You are a great Mom and have a beautiful family. Cheers.

  52. Tara says:

    Happiest of Birthday’s Betty! My grandmother’s name is Betty Jean too so now I feel like you’re in my own sweet family!

    Have a fabulous time surrounded by your absolutely precious daughters and loving friends! 🙂

  53. Kim says:

    Have a fantastic birthday Betty! All the best to you and many more!
    Will miss you on Monday Karen but enjoy your long weekend!

  54. Betsy says:

    Happy birthday Betty!! Enjoy your special day and PLEASE remind Karen to take a picture of your cake to share with us. I’m very curious and excited to see it!!

  55. Teresa Jennings Richardson says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! Hope your day is fun, fabulous, full of fantastic food, friends, family and a few surprises.

  56. Karol says:

    Let the shitshow begin! L’chaim.

  57. AnnW from the US says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! You have raised one heck of a family! I hope you film your special day, because I love your videos. You are one of my favorite blog personalities. You would be #1, but Aunt Peaches, and Blonde Cleaver Lady are ahead of you. I hope you get lots of interesting presents from your clan and your fans. Maybe you’ll get your own pizza oven, chicken coop, or koi pond. Ann

  58. Gwennie says:

    “Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive more you-er than you!” Dr. Seuss.
    Happy Birthday, Betty. “Let us know what old age is. Let us know the happiness time brings, not count the years.” Ausonius

  59. Sideroad 40 says:

    May you all have a great birthday bash celebrating 29,200 days of making the world a more adventurous place to grow up in!

  60. Spike says:

    Happy birthday Betty! I always enjoy hearing what you are up to–Karen’s version anyway! 🙂 And you should definitely call her more.

  61. Meg says:

    Happy birthday, Betty! Enjoy your family and friends and the CAKE!

  62. Beckie says:

    Happy Birthday & many, many more!

  63. Stephanie says:

    A very Happy Birthday Betty, and many happy returns! Enjoy your not-party, and ribs are an amazing choice, you go girl! Your daughters should be thanking you for passing on your fantastic genes (“Jeans”?), you look about 50! All the best, Stephanie

  64. Joslynne says:

    Happy 80th!!! All the way from Japan, tanjoubi omedetou gozaimasu!!!

  65. Pam says:

    Happy Birthday pretty Betty! Enjoy your ribs and special cake!
    My mother’s name was Bettie Jean, so you must be wonderful. 🙂

  66. Ileana says:

    ¡Feliz Cumpleaños! Have a wonderful day, Betty!

  67. Becca says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! Have a lovely day and enjoy the quiet, family pork festival.

  68. Su says:

    Have a Fabulous birthday Betty!

    I cannot get the mental image tho of 80 year old men with BBQ sauce in their eyebrows out of my head…..

  69. Clara says:

    Birthday Greetings from Jefferson City, MO!
    Happy 80th, Betty! Fabulous :0)

  70. Sabina says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!

  71. Lindsay says:

    Happy birthday, Betty!!!

  72. Suzanne says:

    Happy New Year to you, Betty! Happy Birthday!
    I would seriously consider crashing your un-party if I were in the area.
    Sounds like fun!
    Have a wonderful day.

  73. Vanessa says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty, mother of Karen the Krazy…and many more!

  74. Deb Miller says:

    HaPpY bIrThDaY, Beautuful Betty! Sooo obvious where Jaren gets her spit and spunk! Thanks for gifting us all with the delightful Karen!

    • Deb Miller says:

      Damn, shouldn’t try to type while scrambling breakfast eggs and cleaning up mountains of stuffing from the 400 millionth dog toy destroyed in my kitchen floor! Karen. Karen. NOT JAREN! Sheesh!

  75. Oh H@PpY BiRtHd@Y Betty!

  76. Kim says:

    Happy Birthday Miss Betty!!!!! You are awesome. I love your spunk! I see where Karen gets it from 🙂 I hope you have the very best of birthdays.

    Karen, Enjoy your day off but please do try to get at least one pic of the cake! I love seeing what you’re doing. You are simply fabulous dahleeng and your ingenuity and creativity never cease to amaze me. 🙂

  77. jainegayer says:

    Have a WONDERFUL birthday, Betty! And thank you for giving birth to Karen. My mornings would be so dull without her.

  78. Jeannie says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty!

  79. Edith says:

    Hi Betty,

    I hear you’re turning 80!? That’s great! Let your kids spoil you for a day and enjoy your friends on Sunday. Happy Birthday and lots of happy years to come !!!

  80. Lori says:

    Hope you have a fantastic birthday Betty!

  81. Tigersmom says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! You are always a most welcome addition/topic of your daughter’s posts.

    I’m probably not quoting exactly, but “you can edit this later, right?” is one of my favorites.

  82. Susan says:

    My father is having his 91st birthday on Sunday, so he and Betty share a special day. I am beginning to understand your sense of humor, growing up with a parent who is a Leo.

    Good luck with your cake, cooking and event! Oh, and happy birthday, Betty!

  83. Heather says:

    Happy 80th, Betty. Looking forward to a picture of Betty with the cake,

  84. Sue says:

    Betty!! The Happiest of Birthday wishes being sent your way! I hope your celebration is as special as your daughter makes you out to be. Happy 80th!!!!!

  85. Lynne says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!!!
    Wishing you the happiest of celebrations with family and friends 🙂

  86. mickey says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty. Enjoy your not a party on Sunday.
    xo

  87. Mike Flegle says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! The event Karen has planned for Sunday that resembles a party but is definitely NOT a party sounds like great fun!

  88. Jane S says:

    Happy Birthday Betty. Have a great day day with your family and your cake.

  89. chris says:

    Happy Happy Birthday to Betty!

  90. Thera says:

    Happy birthday Betty!

  91. christine hilton says:

    The sneaky old seniors in the Golden Horseshoe all know your home town has the easiest seniors drive test. They flock to it so tell Betty to get in line early! Have a wonderful party with your super hero mother!

  92. Judi. McLeod says:

    Happy Birthday Betty. I love your menu choices.

  93. Ella says:

    Happy birthday! I hope I will be riding an elephant too, when I’m almost 80! You rock!

  94. Jenny says:

    Happy birthday, Betty! You look fabulous! Enjoy your not-a-party BBQ!

  95. Barb says:

    Wishing Betty the most spectacular 80th birthday ever!

  96. Lily MacBloom says:

    Happy Birth Day Betty, enjoy your day!????????

  97. Lynn (really spelled w/ an "e", but somebody else already has that spelling on here) says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! You do NOT look 80, you look much younger!!

  98. Roxanne says:

    Very Happy Birthday, Ms. Betty. I hope the weather is fine, the cake is better, and (even if it’s not a party) you are surrounded by family and friends. You have raised an amazing daughter, so you must be very special. Cheers.

  99. Mary says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! Hope it is wonderful in sprite of your smart-ass daughter. 🙂

  100. Ev Wilcox says:

    With all the preparations-smoked back ribs, appetizers, naked cake (which sounds great), and the cleaning, too bad Betty did not want a party! That would have been fun! You know, with special food, special cake, and lots of attendees, etc! You’re a good daughter, Karen. Have a great time and enjoy Monday off! Prob will need it!
    (Hope like crazy we get a look at the cake)!

    • Phyllis Kraemer says:

      Any bets that Betty is getting a party whether she wants one or not? I’ll take odds on “Yes there is a party!”

  101. Donna says:

    Enjoy your birthday celebration. May you be blessed with love and laughter. Happy Birthday!

  102. Elizabeth says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! My grandfather has his driver’s license until he died, two weeks short of his 98th birthday – so keep going!

  103. LAURA GERBER says:

    Happy birthday to the Awesome Betty – my grandma and her best friend were switchboard operators as well. They seemed like they all had fun times. All Betty’s daughters are pretty awesome.

  104. Artt Vernon says:

    May your Blessings continue…Happy Birthday Betty!

  105. Tisha says:

    Happy 80th birthday Betty!

  106. Artt Vernon says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!!! May your blessings continue…………

  107. Rebecca says:

    Happy birthday Betty! And Karen, how do you cut a naked cake that has different sized layers? I’d be so intimidated. (I’ll probably youtube how later)

  108. Janet says:

    Happy 80th for real! I’m hoping you have a great time at the not-party on Sunday! Enjoy!

  109. Scott says:

    Happy Happy Birthday, Betty!

  110. Allison says:

    As a Texan, I 100% approve of Birthday Betty’s choice in main dish. Give that woman some extra BBQ sauce and a St Arnold!

    Miss Betty, enjoy your birthday! Here’s to 80 great years, and many many more!

    (Karen, my local Mexican restaurant likes to make the birthday guests wear a sombrero while the waitstaff sings happy birthday to them and spoons whip cream onto the birthday guest’s nose. They only do this for birthday parties though. Good thing this is just a BBQ, or it might give you ideas. . .)

  111. Melissa in NC says:

    Happy Day Betty! Enjoy your birthday “gathering” with your family and friends. Happy to hear you passed your drivers test 🙂

    Ms. Karen, you best take a photo of that naked cake. It’s the least you can do after telling me I have to suck it!

  112. Milton says:

    Hope you have a very happy birthday Betty! You have given all of us a special gift in the form of your daughter Karen.

  113. Irene says:

    In just 4 of our official languages in South Africa:
    Happy birthday!
    Usuku olumnandi lokuzalwa!
    Gelukkige verjaardag!
    Letsatsi le monate la tsoalo!

    And finally, in my mother tongue:
    Χρόνια πολλά!
    😀
    Have a most EXCELLENT day, Betty!

  114. Maryanne says:

    Happy birthday Betty! Best wishes and good health for the upcoming year and every year after.

    Karen – good luck with the logistics on Sunday! I’m sure it’ll turn out exactly as expected (because of/despite the planning 😉

  115. Sakura S. says:

    Well, at least Karen won’t be making carrot cake! Thank goodness for that! Can’t wait to see how it turns out. Sounds delightful!

    Happy Birthday, Betty! Totally with you on the ribs – enjoy your special day!

  116. Ms Ellen Derry says:

    Happy Birthday Betty, and best wishes for many more. May your years be filled with happiness & beer.
    – Ellen in Ottawa

  117. Amie says:

    Happy 80th Birthday, Betty!!

  118. Deana says:

    Happy 80th Birthday Betty. Sure hope your unbirthday event is a roaring success. Have the time of your life with family and friends and booze, make sure they have booze. No one eats ribs without booze.

  119. Jackie says:

    Happy Birthday Betty – And I wish you many more. You look great. I hope you enjoy your day.
    I’m happy to see that I’m not the only one with a weird family.
    Karen – I wish you luck with the cake – hope you have time to take a picture.
    Enjoy the “not a party” party.

  120. Patti says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! You look fab!! And while you’re having a blast at the non-party can somebody please take a pic of this naked cake?? I’ve never heard of it but am very intrigued. Have a great time ever’body!!

  121. Buffy says:

    Have a fantabulous birthday! And enjoy your not a party get together. 🙂

  122. Kim C says:

    Happy 80th Birthday Betty from Pakenham, Ontario!
    Wishing you many more happy, healthy birthdays and fun shenanigans involving elephant rides with your fabulous daughters. 🙂
    CHEERS !!!

  123. Sherri says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty!
    I wish you lived near me, I would so fix you up with my dad. His B-day was the 29th, but it was his 79th.
    Quite handsome. Do you ever get to Oregon? : )

  124. Chavella says:

    Happy Birthday Betty. I wish you many more. Can’t wait to hear all the great party stories.

  125. RobinofEdm says:

    Work, work work. Fine. Here.

    Happy Birthday Betty.

    I agree with your reaction to the elephant. I have ridden one too. They smell. Bad.

    Anyway enjoy your ribs and naked cake. Oh. Wait. Was the cake a surprise. I’m so sorry. Okay, I’m stopping now.

  126. Marion says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!!! Sounds like it’s going to be a great celebration.

  127. Janet says:

    Betty–Happy Birthday from Tennessee! Hope y’all have a grand celebration. Enjoy YOUR day.

  128. Gretchen Sexton says:

    Happiest of birthdays to the fabulous Betty! May it be a joyous, raucous, and wonderful celebration of you! (And your switchboarding-quilting-elephant riding-pedicuring friends and family!)

  129. Theresa says:

    Have a very Happy Birthday, Betty! You look fabulous!

  130. Sandy says:

    Happy Birthday!!

  131. Karen says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! I would have tried to call but figured your line was busy. Hugs to you!

  132. Elen G says:

    HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BABY…
    I mean Betty.
    Happy, happy birthday, Betty.
    I just got caught up in a musical time warp.
    Wishing you an adventure.

    As for you, Karen – Laughing so hard. I can’t wait to see a pic of the cake you actually create. Oh, and that is exactly what I do with my lemon verbena, because I don’t know what to do with it.

    Cheers!

  133. Jodi T. says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BETTY!!!! I hope y’all have the best time, Saturday.

  134. SuzyMcQ says:

    Happy 80th to the wildest Betty I know…. well, you’re the only Betty I know!!

  135. Mary W says:

    You really need to add an instant click on your side bar to the Betty and the Brick Wall video for when I’m feeling blah. Can you edit this? Honest it gets me every time! HAPPY BIRTHDAY BETTY!!!! Hope your day was good and the ones following even better.

  136. Mindy says:

    I love a good pork party. Happy birthday, Betty!

  137. LazySusan says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! I don’t know you personally, but through your daughter I can tell that you’re an amazing woman, which is to be celebrated!

  138. Happy Birthday Betty.
    I’ll say it in Irish also; my partypiece for your non party bbq

    “Breithlá shona dhuit a Betty!”

  139. Cred says:

    Happy birthday, Betty! Hope your birthday bbq is filled with delicious food, warm greetings, lots of laughs and minimal eyebrow sauce!

  140. Sonja says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! You raised a funny daughter…and I hope you love your cake!

  141. Nancy says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! I hope you have a lovely day and you enjoy the cake!

  142. Kat says:

    Betty,
    Have a sublime birthday. You deserve it!

  143. Kathi says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! We should all be so wonderfully active and ‘with it’ at 80! I can see where Karen inherited her talent and spirit. My husband is a birthday boy also on Sunday. Not exactly a boy- he’ll be 60. Have an amazing day with your amazing family!!

  144. Happy birthday, Betty! Betty is the best name, because it is short for Elizabeth, and from Elizabeth you get to choose no fewer than 37 different nicknames. There’s Betty, of course, and Liz, and Liza, and Eliza, and Beth, and Betsy, and Bessie (a personal favorite due to a snappy and spirited great aunt), and Bethie, and Bess, and Alittlebit, if you’re into that sort of thing, and Ellie, and Lizard, and maybe a few more. And of course there’s Ellsbeth, and Elisabeth, and their various variants. You just can’t lose with Betty.

    I hope you have a grand birthday, and please upend a large alcoholic beverage for me. I’ll be upending one myself, here in Southern California. Maybe thinking of you. Maybe thinking of Ethan Hawke. Probably petting my cat. Something festive, anyway.

  145. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    Happy Birthday Betty…I wish you were my Mom….Have fun on Sunday…Do you know Karen tells lies and says bad words a lot???

  146. Andrea says:

    My mom turns 80 next year and is an aw some lady. It sounds like you two have a lot in common. Happy birthday Miss Betty!

  147. Jody says:

    Happy birthday Betty. Enjoy YOUR day,,

    Ps I get the “I’d rather be quilting” face.

  148. kelly says:

    Happy Birthday Betty!!!

  149. Kathy Littrell says:

    Birthday Blessings, Betty!! Hope you have many more!

  150. Paula says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! You look amazing. I turned 60 this year and I’m aspiring to look as good as you at 80. Be sure Karen takes a picture of your cake. We really want to see it. Have a fun day.

  151. Janay says:

    Happy belated birthday from San Diego, Betty!! We think you’re pretty rad. Stay cool and have a fabulous year. -janay

  152. Gwen H. says:

    Happy Birthday Ms. Betty. From sunny California

  153. Kate says:

    Well, I’m late to this party, but Happy Birthday Betty! You look darn good for a woman who gave birth to three Bertelsen girls and lived to tell tales on them all.

  154. Mary Kay says:

    Happy birthday Betty I hope Karen gets a picture of your birthday cake. I like cake too.

  155. Martha says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! I’ve been lurking on this site for a few years now, faithfully reading but never commenting. Since it’s your birthday, I thought, “Now’s the time! My first comment!”

  156. Laura says:

    Happy birthday, happy birthday
    We love you
    Happy birthday and may all your dreams come true
    When you blow out the candles one light stays aglow
    It’s the love light in your eye where ere you go.

  157. Margaret K. says:

    Been traveling, so this is almost late – Happy Birthday Betty!

  158. Katrina says:

    Happy 80th Birthday, Betty!

    Hope you had a blast at your “Non Party”, or should it have been a “Nun Party”?

    Love, from California…USA!

  159. Kathy says:

    Happy birthday from Disneyworld, Betty!!??

  160. Debbie says:

    L’chaim, shalom and yom huledet sameach, Betty. Karen can translate!

  161. janpartist says:

    For sure a very happy birthday Betty and heck jump out the window again just for old times sake! Or maybe just have a martini or two and make someone younger jump out a window…

  162. Erika Collins says:

    All the best Betty. My mom is 80 this year also! But since she gave birth to me when she was 60 that makes me hmm, about 20 or so?! Happy birthday from Washington State!
    Erika

  163. Anita says:

    Happy Birthday, Betty! I hope you had a great time at your non-party birthday celebration.

  164. Karen M says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! Wishing you many more years of good health and happiness !!!!

  165. Bobbi says:

    Hap-py Birth-day To Youuuuuuuu !!!!!!!

  166. Talia says:

    Happy Birthday Betty! Enjoy your special day!

  167. Melody says:

    Betty,
    Hope it’s a wonderful birthday! My mother’s name is also Betty – very popular name back then that has fallen on hard times. http://baby-names.familyeducation.com/nametracker
    Happy day!

  168. IRS says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Betty! (Say that five times fast when you’re drunk.) By now you have no doubt recovered from the meat sweats brought on by the plethora of pork products consumed at your feast, sobered up from the martinis, and wiped the naked cake off your face from when you did a face plant in it. Not only do you look lovely, and decades younger than you are, but I have to love a woman who drinks, swears, and raised a daughter so skilled in the art of snark (something that I claim as my pastime in life). Your expressions in the photos where you are photographed engaging in the activities your daughters have no doubt forced you to participate in (“So you want to keep the old woman busy so she doesn’t go senile? Go suck it and leave me to my martinis.) are absolutely priceless. Karen no doubt gets her humour from you. By the way, when I read that you are a former switchboard operator, I immediately thought of the great Lily Tomlin as Ernestine, and I laughed my butt off. Best wishes, and I hope you are with us for many, many years, nay decades, to come.

  169. Liz says:

    Betty you look better than my 67 yr old mother, and she’s pretty fine looking! (sorry mom) Happy belated Birthday!!

  170. Elizabeth Sellon says:

    Happy happy day Betty! Karen do you ever butter and sugar your cake pans instead of flouring! It makes for a lovely shine on the outside of naked cakes and a sweet almost crunchy edge! Yum yum yum! Have a great time with the process…I need to make something for a 65th bday and you may have inspired me to go naked! Enjoy your day off you will need it after all the celebrating!

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