If you’ve been around for any length of time you know about the infamous Birthday Plate. If you’re new to the family, I’ll give you the skinny version.
Many moons ago I went to a little craft shop in Birmingham and made a birthday plate. The idea was that the plate would be put away and only come out when someone celebrates a birthday. On your special day you get to eat off the birthday plate.
The birthday plate has been a part of our celebrations since the beginning of our life as a family.
We’ve watched the years pass by each time one of our little guys blew out a candle on the plate.
The plate has traveled with us to various party locations including, but not limited to, fine dining establishments like Waffle House.
It may sound silly to some but the birthday plate was part of who we are as a family. It was a tradition unique to our family that I hoped our boys would one day pass on to their children. Dozens of pictures celebrating our thankfulness for another year have included the beloved plate.
Three weeks ago we were getting ready to head to Virginia for some training for our upcoming job overseas. If we all six rode in the van, we had nowhere to put our luggage and if we all flew, we wouldn’t have a car while we were in VA. We decided to split up. Britten took the two little guys and drove while I got to fly with the two big kids. We crammed eight weeks worth of luggage into the van, kissed the big guys goodbye and sent them on their way. Before Britten pulled out of the driveway I handed him a carefully wrapped package and told him to guard it with his life. Inside the package was the birthday plate and the blue plate special which we will talk about another time. The plates are both ceramic so I wrapped them in several dish towels and zipped them inside a padded pouch. Surely that would keep them snuggly and safe.
Britten and the boys made it to North Carolina before stopping to get a hotel room for the night. Once they were all snuggled safely in bed he called to check in. The conversation started with, “Babe, you aren’t going to believe what happened. It could have been really bad but we are all ok.” Ummm…certainly not what a Mama wants to hear.
Turns out that while he was driving up 1-85 the back hatch of the van flew open and several things toppled out the back into oncoming traffic. Britten pulled over to retrieve what he could but a couple of the bags had been hit by an oncoming 18 wheeler and left just enough to be identified as….you guessed it, the bag with both of the plates. *sigh*
I’d love to say that I didn’t cry because in reality it’s just a few bits of gravel and stone mixed together with a nice coat of paint. However, that gravel and stone was something special! No doubt it”ll be missed. However, I have resolved to look at it this way- we’ve started a new adventure, a new life if you will, and with new adventures come new traditions.