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happy birthday, mom!

Baby Lois and EdithAlthough it was taken a very long time ago (!), this photo  is one of my favorite pictures of my mom and me.

Just look at how content I am, leaning in and holding onto her, while she pulls me close and makes sure I know how loved I am.

It is exactly how she’s always made me feel.

And, trust me, there are days I wish I could still climb on her lap like that.

My mom turns 84 today, and I want to publicly wish her a happy birthday and make sure she knows how much I love her.

I’ve written about her plenty of times, and she is continually – and happily – surprised when she meets one of you for the first time and you squeal, “Oh, the Cute Tomato!” and give her a big hug.

She’s always been popular in real life but she seems to have developed quite a virtual fan club now, too. No wonder. She’s such a good sport, and gamely goes along with my crazy antics. She has also come up with some crazy brilliant ideas of her own, which have led us to a bread tasting making class in the middle of nowhere, a visit to the not-so-local lavender farm and — with the encouragement of my equally-wonderful dad — half a dozen cherished spa weekends with my sister.

She loves Pinterest but, rather than getting her own account, she stalks mine. I’ve even created a Things I Think My Mom Will Find Pinteresting board for her. She genuinely loves making things for people so if you want something knit or baked, put in your request.

Above all, though, my mom loves her grandchildren. When they were little, she kept up with the books and movies that were important to them, remembered all of their friends’ names and played endless card games with them. She sends care packages for any occasion, whips up blankets to accompany them to college and recently celebrated my daughter’s 21st birthday by going out for margaritas with her.

I am so lucky she’s mine.

Edith and Lois

My mom knows a lot of you, either in real life, through stories I’ve shared or through my Facebook page. She reads your blog posts and the comments you leave me. You may not realize it but she asks about you often and genuinely cares that everyone is healthy, happy and doing well.

(Note: On Facebook, she will only be friends with my sister and me, so if you send her a friend request and don’t hear back from her, please don’t take it personally. She will still “like” your posts if she can see them!)

So please join me in wishing my mom a very happy birthday. She just may save you a piece of cake. Or bake you one of your own.


  1. Happy, Happy Birthday from an Edythe to an Edith!! I wish you all the best!

  2. Happy Birthday to my adopted mother Edith!

    You are filled with light, love and laughter, and you obviously passed those qualities onto Lois. I hope you both enjoy your special day together, and that it’s all you want it to be.

    With many hugs, and in friendship~

  3. nancy naomi says:

    Wishing you a wonderful Birthday!!

  4. Happy Birthday Mrs.Alter, Edith I think at this point in our lives I can call you Edith? It was great seeing you last month.

  5. I wish for you a day filled with joy and laughter — all that you want and all that you need with a few extra moments on top just because you, without even knowing it, bring so much joy to others. And by others I mean me! I cherish every like, comment, and thought you send my way. Sending the love right back your way!

  6. Linda White says:

    Happy Birthday Mom! Today is my birthday too, so we share a special day! Hope your’s is all you can imagine and then some!

  7. Happy Burthday Cute Tomato!

  8. Happy Birthday, Edith! I hope Lois puts all 84 candles on your cake and that you all roast a few marshmallows before blowing out those candles! And may every wish come true for you! Life, love, and happiness always!

  9. Helene Cohen Bludman says:

    Happy Birthday dear Edith! I feel like I know you but I hope someday we can meet IRL (you are probably one of the few 84 year-olds who will understand that). Have a wonderful day and here’s to many more years of health and happiness!

  10. Susan Jensen says:

    Happy Birthday to the original Cute Tomato! I hope you have a great day! Lois is so very lucky to have you so close!
    With Love,

  11. Happy birthday, Lois’ Mom! It’s clear where Lois gets her wonderful smile. Have a lovely day.

  12. Happy, happy birthday, Lois’s mum! And take a few minutes to bask in how well-loved you are–you sound like a truly special person, and your daughter is definitely following in your footsteps.

  13. Vicky Tarulis says:

    Statistics show that birthdays are good for us, those with the most live the longest. Sending you many happies for your special day. Be well.

  14. Lovely to virtually meet you MOM…no greater accomplishment than raising amazing, lovely kids. You did good! Lois is a life changer, and I understand that she got that from you. Happy Birthday and many happy returns.

  15. It is wonderful to see a mother/daughter relationship that works. You both are so lucky. Happy Birthday to Lois’ mom, Edith.

  16. Happy, Happy Birthday Edith! May you have a wonderful day! It was a joy to get to meet you in December. I am such a fan of your daughter and her family too. We are all blessed by loving connections such as yours with your family. The ripples that move outward from that are often unknowable. May you get a bit of a wink about the gifts you have given from these many blessings headed your way, you Cute Tomato! You have tended your garden well. Thank you.

  17. Bryan Moore says:

    Happy Happy Birthday to my neighbor from 197 Street. She put up with many antics from a little boy like me, not the least of which was bouncing a Super Pinky ball against the front brick wall of our connected houses – that HAD to drive her nuts. But I don’t remember her ever saying anything about it to me (we kids can be so wrapped up in our own little worlds). Edith was a great neighbor to have while growing up in Queens, NY. I’ll be 50 next year but I’ll always remember Edith, Irving, Lois, and Sheila. Lois was always my favorite babysitter. HAVE AN AWESOME SPECIAL DAY, EDITH!

  18. Can I join the Edith Fan club too? She sounds like a terrific mom and a wonderful human being. You’re a couple of lucky gals (she says “gals,” right?). Is there a #happybirthdaycutetomato going around?

  19. I can’t tell you how much I love your matching expressions of appreciation and joy in the company of each other. Time to send my own mother a nice card for no reason.

  20. Blowing you an enormous kiss Edith! May your day be as special as you (and your sweet daughter) both are!

  21. Happy Birthday to your beautiful and adorable mom, who we all feel like we know!
    She just seems to so enjoy life and really, that’s all we need, EVER,.
    Lucky you and lucky Momma.

  22. Edith aka mom says:

    A heartfelt thank you to all my friends – old and newly acquired – for the comments and good wishes on my birthday. You are making this a very special day for me.

  23. Wishing Lois’ mom a truly joyous birthday. Oh, and one more thing…I’d like for you to adopt me.

  24. Ashley Roberts says:

    Have a simply divine Birthday Month Edith ….
    I Celebrated my 67th on January 20th!

    You & Lois look as beautiful as the very 1st Day we met!
    AND … the pic of Lois on your lap is really adorable…

    Hugs x0x0x Ashley Roberts

  25. Belated, but a very, very happy birthday to your mom. What a lucky woman you are to call her mom and how lucky she is to call you her daughter!

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