By the grace of God and love of family, we made it through thick and thin, sickness and health, outside interference, and just every day life happening to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. And we are so happy we did!
A close friend of mine told me what her Dad always says when people ask what’s the secret to a long marriage. “Don’t leave and don’t die.” I love that quote and used it on the elevator at MD Anderson this week. Lots of laughs from strangers who may not have been experiencing a very good day.
My daughter asked me over a year ago if we wanted a party to celebrate our Golden Anniversary. I told her the best party would be all 14 of our family members together to celebrate for a few days. She offered the house she and her husband own in Park City, Utah. We had to work around everyone’s personal schedules, including my care at MD Anderson, but we were all able to get together for several days, as a family, to celebrate our lives.
The weather was beautiful, the house and grounds magnificent, and there were plenty of fun activities to enjoy during the week.
On Sunday we had a great brunch at Stein Erikson’s Lodge on the terrace overlooking the mountains. Then it was on to the “Sunday Silly Shopping” event on Main Street in Park City.
On Monday, the grandchildren loved the ropes course and Museum at Olympic Park.
We gathered back at the house where Troy decorated Thompson’s one-year-old birthday cake as Fenway Park. He used little plastic baseball figures that had been on his cake as a little guy.
Todd arranged for us to go back downtown for pizza galore. The proprietor said, “You guys rock!”
Then it was back to the house again to celebrate Thompson’s one-year-old birthday a few days late.
We all loved getting to celebrate our California baby’s birthday. We had a little cake for his very own, but he didn’t like that icing on his fingers.
Tuesday was a big surprise when Tommy and I woke to the living area all decorated with gold and white balloons, party decorations and pictures of all of us through the years.
Julie, Holly, and Michelle had stayed up into the wee hours the night before pulling together all the things they had each brought for the celebration.
After wonderful breakfast tacos, cooked by Scott, we headed for Park City Center for rides and miniature golf.
In the afternoon we all headed back home for a rest while the caterers cooked and set-up a gourmet dinner in the Huebner’s backyard.
During the appetizers we enjoyed 60’s-70’s music. I took the opportunity to dance with my oldest grandson, Tyler.
We also took family pictures to commemorate this special Golden Anniversary.
They live in Dallas. Madison will be a Sophomore at Texas A & M and Tyler a Junior at Jesuit in Dallas.
Lindsey will be in the 8th grade at Seabrook Middle School. Sydney will start 6th grade at Seabrook Middle School and Ashton will be in the 3rd grade at Ed White Elementary school. They live about an hour from us in Texas.
They live in Long Beach, California, where they own and operate Olafson Creative. We get together with them several times each year.
We feasted on a gourmet dinner of salad, vegetables, elk and trout, fresh from the area. It was all topped-off with a delicious cake and happy singing.
What an indescribably blessing our family is to us. As the evening cooled outdoors, we adjourned to the game room in the lower part of the house for beautiful gifts with emotion, gratefulness and love throughout. Troy read from a framed listing of the 50 things they all love about us. We all laughed and cried throughout the presentation. I can’t help but write a few of them for you.
- I love that you have made me a part of your loving family.
- I actually do love that you made us go to church and Sunday school. I realize now the great morals and ethics we learned.
- I love how Grammy taught me how to create–everything from little scrapbooks to crafts to quilts to gowns.
- I loved the Sunday picnics and playgrounds all over Houston.
- I love the two of you dancing the jitterbug, knowing you’ve been dancing together since you were teenagers.
- I love the warmth you show each other when arriving or leaving a family event. It may be as simple as Granddaddy gently rubbing Grammy’s back to comfort her or Grammy making sure Granddaddy has everything he needs to enjoy the special event.
- I love our family backyard wiffle ball games.
- I loved sharing the birth of our three babies with you, and I loved having your help for those first few weeks.
Then everyone geared-up for the action-packed Shuffleboard competition. It was close, but Tyler and Julie were named the champions.
Wednesday and Thursday we slowly began to go back to our homes. We’d had so much fun together. It was great for the older grandchildren to spend time with baby Thompson. He did not lack for attention and love.
It was hard to say good-bye to him and his mommy and daddy. California is a long way away.
But how thankful we are to have all these babies and their parents. Thank you for spending those precious days with us all together.
Tommy and I had our own little morning celebration on Saturday, June 11, 2016, our actual wedding anniversary date. In the evening we attended a Sunday school party with many good friends.
They had a cake with candles and singing to conclude the special evening. Thank you everyone.
May there be many more. We love you all family and friends. Life would not be the same without you. God’s blessings on you all. Judy