My Mother is very pleased to tell her friends, "I have 3 children. Then 4 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren."
When you add spouses, there are a total of 19 of us in our immediate family. For her 96th birthday today, almost all of us were present. The two key family members missing were Jenny who is in Guam on assignment and Jeff, who is back in Hawaii starting his new school year.
With flowers, leis, birthday cake and Teppanyaki lunch at Benihana Restaurant, my Mother enjoyed being surrounded by everyone, especially her 5 great-grandchildren.
Benihana, founded in 1964 by Rocky Aoki, a Japanese entrepreneur revolutionized the Japanese style grilled cooking (teppanyaki) dining to a new level by combining and incorporating entertainment with gourmet dining. J.J. and I can recollect our dining experiences at various Benihana restaurants where chefs would throw knives and do all sort of juggling with food and utensils. Today, such act was very toned down and limited. Perhaps it is due to the litigious society especially doing business in California.
What a wonderful and gracious day to be able to share this auspicious day with my Mother and the rest of the family. We were grateful and pledged to get together next year.
Aloha -- Cathi