Birthdays only come around once a year and they are such a special time to celebrate life. They are also a time to let our loved ones know how much we care.
Celebrating that special day can take the shape of so many things. From themes like Thomas the Tank Engine to a sweet 16 and beyond, we all love a good party.
But photographer Kourtney Knapp had a different idea for her grandmother’s 76th birthday. After the family experienced a bumpy patch, they wanted to make the celebration extra special.
Knapp’s grandmother, Florence, had landed herself in the hospital after coming down with pneumonia.
“She’s always been terrified of dying from pneumonia.” said Knapp, so the diagnosis was a bit frightening.
While in the hospital, the doctors also discovered other problems. Florence was suffering from kidney problems and irregular heartbeats.
The family gathered around her, keeping her company and even trying to decide who would give up a kidney for her if it came to that.
Everyone was devastated by her sudden failing health, wondering if she would make it through.
Thankfully, Grandma Florence pulled through and was able to go home, but she still required weekly visits to the hospital.
It was at this time that Knapp decided that Florence’s next birthday, her 76th, would be her best one yet. Knapp started working to plan a party Florence would never forget.
She came up with an idea for a Pepsi-themed photo shoot, after her favorite drink, but it was really much more. Knapp wanted to make a cake smash party, the kind of celebration usually reserved for the first birthday.
The entire family quickly got on board with the plan. Grandma was taken to the hair dresser and had her nails and makeup done. One family member created a special shirt for her to wear at the shoot.
The photographs from the shoot were amazing. Grandma was all dolled up eating cake with her hands. Her smile was priceless as she held up another photograph taken years ago, a picture of herself in her youth.
Knapp knew that the best part of the day, for her, was the chance to show her grandmother how much she meant to everyone. She was a woman who had always been there for everyone, supporting them through difficult times.
For Grandma, the best part of the day just might have been the cold bottle of Pepsi. I have to think that the cake might have been pretty awesome too!
The party not only put grandma in the spotlight, but also brought everyone together to give Florence the chance to feel young again.
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