Wednesday, May 23, 2012

25th Anniversary Surprise!

Rich and I were so blessed to have recently celebrated our 25th anniversary!  It's really hard to believe we've been married that long... though much has happened in those 25 years, in many ways it has flown by.  God has been extremely gracious to us in our marriage.  We love that we get to live life together, and we can honestly say that it just gets better with each passing day.   

Let me just say upfront that it was a pure act of humility on my part to post the below picture. Gotta love the 80's bad highlight job and and big hair on me and the fact that Rich even HAD hair.  :-)  But my puffy sleeves are totally AWESOME.  And it's nice that sometime between then and now I got the idea to pluck my eyebrows.  


  THEN:  May 16, 1987 - Marina del Rey, CA


NOW:  May 16, 2012 - Pasadena, CA

We had an interesting actual 25th anniversary day - we dropped our youngest child at the airport to go to Thailand for 6 weeks.  Who would have imagined that such a monumental event would occur on our 25th anniversary?  We then hit Chipotle for lunch and then came home to relax a bit before going to a fancy dinner at Ruth's Chris with Drew and Stephanie.  Since our children are one of the best blessings of our marriage, we find it very appropriate to have them join us in celebrating our anniversary!  We missed Emma, but was a special, memorable day.

However, weeks earlier, Rich blessed me with an incredible anniversary surprise.   He told me about 2 weeks in advance that he had a special dinner at home planned on an upcoming Friday evening, and that Drew, Stephanie, Emma, and Nick would be joining us.   He wouldn't hint at all, but kept chuckling to himself and saying that it would be "epic."  I had no idea what was going on.

As the day approached, he told me to clear the afternoon, and he came home early from work that day. He told me he was taking me out for several hours, leaving the kids at home to prepare for the evening.  We went to Lamill coffee in Silver Lake, and enjoyed passing the rainy afternoon sipping amazing coffee, talking, and reading.  Finally, we got the signal from the kids that it was time to come home. I was so curious as to what was going on. 

Upon arrival, I saw that the dining room and kitchen doorways were covered in blankets so I couldn't see in.  I was instructed to go to my bedroom and change (Emma had laid an outfit out for me) and wait to be called.  I could hear hustle and bustle and was getting anxious to see what they were up to!  Finally, they ushered me into the dining room, and pulled back the "curtain."  I was blown away by the amazing set up...

First of all, the room was totally decked out- our farm table had a lovely and rustic tablescape, there were white candles burning all around, and I immediately noticed the stunning new dishes on the table.  You see, when we got married, we had registered for this beautiful Royal Daulton china pattern, but we never received any pieces. On eBay several years ago, I tracked down the pattern and obtained a small plate, which I have kept displayed on our dresser as a memento of our wedding.   On the table in front of me, I now beheld six beautiful place settings of the exact dishes I dreamed of having 25 years ago... and they were more beautiful than I had even remembered.   I was stunned!  Rich said he had my sister (the super shopper) track them down and had them shipped from England.  Unbeknownst to me, he had been storing them at her house for months.  It was such a thoughtful, sweet gift.  I was so surprised and could have never imagined that he would have done that.

After a bit of time admiring everything, Rich and I were seated at the table, and the kids began bringing out the food course by course.  Apparently Rich had devised the menu, done all the food shopping with Emma the day before, printed off the recipes, and given the kids the job of sole responsiblity of making all the food!   There was a printed menu at every place setting, and I could see we were in for an amazing culinary treat.

Here are some of the reveal and pre-dinner pictures:


admiring the china


...and being impressed by the menu!



So happy to be married to this sweet man.


 The chefs Drew & Stephanie :-)


 The decorating team - Nick & Emma!

Here are a few shots of the table & room....



I loved the look of the burlap runner Emma made, over the white linen tablecloth. So fresh & beachy.




There were vases/jars of delicate white daisies everywhere.  The light blue accents went beautifully with the china.





Emma made this amazing photo collage in the numbers 25, including an assortment of photos from over the years.  What a walk down memory lane...

Now for the beautiful food...


The first course was homemade crab cakes and bacon wrapped shrimp - I would have been satisfied if they stopped at this. But wait...there's more.


Next was this beautiful butternut squash soup. 


This might have been my favorite course: grilled panzanella salad. I had never had this before and it was incredibly fresh and delicious.

 Here is the beautiful main course of Hoisin-glazed seared scallops over sauteed garlic spinach and roasted asparagus...also served with mushroom risotto.  So pretty and super tasty.


And, the grand finale:  they got my favorite Porto's dessert- triple chocolate mousse!  By this time, everyone was so stuffed that they just took a couple bites... but not me- I ate the entire thing.  :-)

Can you believe they did all this?  It was such an amazing, unforgettable night.  I am still in awe that they pulled the evening off.  What a gift of love this was, and so totally unexpected! 

While nothing could compare to this, I will post soon on the unique anniversary gift I gave to Rich... let me just say that when you see it you just might need to get one of your own :-)  

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Pur et Simple said...

A-maz-ing!! What a gift from God -a beautiful marriage! What I love about Rich is that he is such a jokester, but he is so tender and sweet with you!!
Love the dishes - Love the meal (way to go Drew and Stephanie!)
Love the decor (couldn't expect anything less from Emma and Nick!)
You are one blessed woman!
Prov. 31:28

Erin @ Sassin' Southern Style said...

What an amazing anniversary and wonderful family! This sounds like something straight out of a movie, and if you didn't have pictures, I might not believe something so wonderful. Congratulations on 25 years!

Miller Family said...

What a wonderful way to surprise and delight you!! My hubby has been teaching on romance and friendship in marriage and how we need to study our spouses. He may just want to share this little story..if thats ok? Tell Rich thumbs up from me!! What a guy! And what a blessing to have the kids be apart of such a momentous occasion!!