Old Ritual=New Ritual

I am reposting my birthday post from last year. I just finished making this year’s birthday pie.  Thanks to all for the birthday wishes!


Saturday was my birthday. And of course, we had a record breaking snowstorm that canceled my son’s and his girlfriend’s visit here.  As my husband and I were stuck in the house, I decided that I would make my own birthday treat.  And it is not cake.

It is pie.  I absolutely love pies over cakes. And how perfect is it that January 23 is National Pie Day! http://www.piecouncil.org/events/nationalpieday.

So I set out to make my very own, very first Birthday Pie.  And what flavor would it be? Without a doubt, it is strawberry rhubarb pie. I am completely in love with the tartness of the rhubarb, plus the brightness of the strawberries.

But strawberry rhubarb pie is part of a very special, old ritual for me.

In my youth, I was  a competitive equestrian. This was a huge commitment for both myself and my parents.  My father was totally devoted to my sport, and he drove my horse and me all over New Jersey and Pennsylvania to horse shows. My Dad was my biggest supporter, and my biggest fan.

Back in those days, horse shows were very local events, and usually a benefit for a school or an organization.  And there was always a food tent run by  a group of local ladies who made wonderful homemade soups, sandwiches, and pies.  And none was better that the Peapack Reformed Church Ladies Auxiliary food tent.  We would arrive at the show grounds at the crack of dawn.  And when my Dad saw their tent, he would park the trailer and make a beeline to get a strawberry rhubarb pie.  He would buy the entire pie, and pay for it then, and we would pick it up when I was done competing. We would drive back to the barn, and would talk about how the day went. Whether I had a good ride, whether the judging was fair (according to Dad, it was fair if I won, it was unfair if I didn’t..) It was a special time, just the two of us, and it is my favorite memory of time with him. He made me feel like I could  achieve whatever I wanted to.

Once we got the horse home and taken care of, and unhitched the horse trailer, we would head home and eat that pie.  He loved it just as much as I did.

My father has been gone for over ten years now, and I miss him every day. And every time I have strawberry rhubarb pie, it brings me back to our precious time together.

So now, from this birthday on, I have a new ritual.  I will always make strawberry rhubarb pie on my birthday.  And in my heart, I will be eating it with my Dad.

strawberry rhubarb pie-cropped




4 thoughts on “Old Ritual=New Ritual

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