Barb (my sister-in-law) and I threw a casual, family dinner party last week in celebration of our husbands’ parent’s 50th anniversary. It’s not everyday that couples celebrate 50 years. While our in-laws didn’t want a big party, they did agree to a small, intimate, casual gathering with family.
Barb and I enjoyed planning the evening. We both enjoy cooking, but we wanted to make an easy, yet delicious meal. We decided on surf and turf — getting our husbands involved with grilling.
We started the evening with grilled herbed shrimp with mango salsa and a special grapefruit and vodka cocktail. This was followed by a strawberry field greens salad (see May 14 post for recipe). The main course was filet mignon with a shitake gorgonzola sauce and grilled lobster with drawn butter — served with green bean bundles. Dessert was strawberry pie with cappuccinos. (Click on picture above to see enlarged menu).
I was in charge of the tablescape and had decided to wait to see what flowers inspired me the morning of the dinner. (Between my mother-in-law and I, we have table linens and china for every theme, color and season.) While one doesn’t normally think of “pink” for the golden anniversary, I couldn’t pass on the beautiful pink peonies at Trader Joes. We used fresh cuttings from my mother-in-law’s garden for greenery on the table. Very simple, yet tasteful.
What my husband and I loved most about the evening was the discussion around the dinner table. We had printed out questions for Jeff’s parents and placed them on the table runner. During the course of the evening, family members asked questions about their married life. Our kids really enjoyed asking the questions of their “Mimi and Pop”, especially the ones about their first kiss and their biggest fight.
My in-laws were such great sports … and shared wonderful, funny stories. It was great for our children to hear about their grandparents lives and to witness the love, commitment and respect they have shared for years.
- How did the two of you meet?
- Where was your first date?
- What is your favorite memory of your 50 years together?
- What is your favorite memory of when the boys were little?
- What advice would you give your kids on marriage?
- What attracted you to each other?
- What was your best vacation together?
It was a fun and special evening.