Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A Look at the Celebration

Here are a few photos and clips from my parents' 50th wedding anniversary celebration. It was held at the clubhouse owned by my brother's condo association. It was very nice and worked out perfectly for everything we had planned. First, we had a sit-down dinner. Everyone was there except for my oldest brother and his family.

After the dinner we had a program. The first part of the program was a short presentation my parents gave about their life-long creative and business pursuit - their company, The Naturalist. They brought old products and catalogs from the very beginnings of the store and then spoke about the history of how it started off as a gift business and then ended up as a furniture company. They shared some highlights with us and I only wish I was able to get better footage. This first clip is of my dad talking about one of their products from early on in the store's history. The video is poor quality but the audio should be fine. He is explaining about how one of their products - the display of old, rusted toys - was actually bought and sold by Bloomingdales. The second half of the clip is my mom talking about her different pillow designs and how she was featured in the magazine, Better Homes and Gardens.
The second clip is of my parents discussing one of their most memorable products - the tire swing and the story behind my mom's appearance on the old game show, What's My Line? I am constantly amazed at all that my parents have done, the things they have created, and the recognition they have received. Because I was born later in the family - I am most likely only partly aware of the significance my parents and their business had not only in our community but in the gift and design industry nationwide. I seriously believe a book could be written about their experiences. It is truly remarkable.

After my parents' presentation, the program continued with tributes, memories, and musical/dance numbers given by members of the family. We then moved to the "theater" room where we watched an animated movie that my 15 year old nephew made. He is a very talented animator and more specifically does amazing movies with claymation. The movie he made for this anniversary celebration was a cartoon of him interviewing different members of his family about some of their favorite memories of my parents. It was so cool! He even used the real voices of his family members for the characters. I wish I could include it with the post but I think it is too long. After his movie, we watched a picture slide show set to music. My parents had no idea we were doing any of this! I think they were deeply touched.


Jen said...

Wow, Emily, I had no idea your parents had run such an amazing business. What creative people! And what a fun celebration to hold as tribute to them. I look forward to doing the same for my parents in a few years.

Danny said...

Good Job. I have always been a huge fan of your parents. Please tell them congrats for me! I can't belive how old Brian and Amy's kids are.

Julie said...

Thank-you for that little snippet, but I need more. I hope you have it all so I can enjoy more than a few seconds. What an amazing couple! I love the group photo at the table. So happy to hear the celebration was a success.

Diana said...

Your parents truly are the most amazing people! Sounds like a really, truly special evening.

brooke said...

Your family is really amazing. I didn't know that your parents did all of those neat things. It sounds like it was a great celebration!

Anna said...

I have the best stationary from a yard sale your parents had way long ago. It is Naturalist and I love...timeless and classy, just like your parents.

Jennette said...

I still have some of that stationary too! I love it. In fact, I wish that the Naturalist were still up and running because I'm in need of some better decor.

What a wonderful evening that must have been. Congratulations! Like Danny said, I've always been a big fan of your parents too, and I see your talents, your creativity and your enthusiasm as an extension of them for sure.