Back in the summer of 1961, a young man named Jerry married his college sweetheart Mary. Six kids and eleven grandkids later, they found themselves marking their fiftieth year of wedded bliss. This special couple is my parents. Over the fourth of July weekend, I traveled to South Dakota to be a part of their fiftieth wedding anniversary celebration.
|Just a couple of young kids|
All six of my siblings came for the big party. Not only all the kids, but also all eleven of the grandkids were in attendance, from the oldest (my son Cody) to the very newest (my brother Mark's son Bode, who is just 2 months old). It's been a few years since the entire family's been together.
|And they haven't changed a bit!|
My sister, who lives in town, did most of the work in preparation for the big day. And she did a great job! One of her great ideas was to have a display table full of photos documenting my parent's married lives. She even included their wedding album. It was fun to see all the old pictures from times past. A trip down memory lane.
|A table full of photos was on display|
And the photo table was a big hit with the guests.
|And of course their wedding album|
For the guests, there were two big cakes, coffee, and tons of punch. We also served mixed nuts and mints, which were a huge hit with the little kids!
|Catching up with old friends|
We had a great turnout. It was fun to see Mom and Dad enjoying themselves with all of their friends. I saw people I hadn't seen in many years. It was wonderful to see so many people come and help my parents celebrate their special day.
|My mom greets some of the well-wishers|
The tables were decorated with a page of quotations about marriage. Here are some of my favorites:
|There was lots of cake and punch|
"A first-rate marriage is like a first-rate hotel; expensive but worth it."
|Greetings from friends|
"Don't marry the person you think you can live with; marry the individual you think you can't live without."
|The photo table was a popular place|
"I have great hopes that we shall love each other all our lives as much as if we had never married at all."
|Mom and Dad greet some of their guests|
"Like good wine, marriage gets better with age - once you learn to keep a cork in it."
"I never knew what real happiness was until I got married. And by then it was too late." - Max Kauffman
|They had a good crowd|
"Marriage is a great institution, but I'm not ready for an institution." - Mae West
|One of my brothers and his family look at photos|
"The sum which two married people owe to one another defies calculation. It is an infinite debt, which can only be discharged through eternity."
|"Thanks for coming!"|
"Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight." - Phyllis Diller
|Family photo with all six kids|
"When two people are under the influence of the most violent, most insane, most delusive, and most transient of passions, they are required to swear that they will remain in that excited, abnormal, and exhausting condition continuously until death do them part."
|Seems like it was only yesterday...|
"Our wedding was many years ago. The celebration continues to this day"
Happy anniversary Mom and Dad! Wishing you many more happy years to come!