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50th anniversary cookie buffet

July 3, 2015

My parents, Gary and LaVerta Foust, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last month, and my family hosted a party for them. I love planning parties, so I had a great time with this. Thanks to Pinterest, things got carried away pretty quickly, but I did find some fantastic ideas there, and I managed to rein myself in before I went completely overboard.

One of the main things I needed to figure out was food. At first I considered doing appetizers and other finger foods, but since the party was from 2:00-5:00 on a Saturday, I decided to give myself a break and just go with a cookie buffet. Everybody loves cookies, right? Plus, this would be a fun way to use some recipes from family members who are no longer with us. My dad's favorite cookie is his mom's snickerdoodles, and he loves the way I make them. Perfect!

I initially planned on making the cookies a month or so in advance and freezing them to save time before the party. I somehow forgot that I have two sons who play baseball, and my middle son played both little league and junior high ball, so as soon as school was out, we had a whopping 11 baseball games a week. That's a lot of baseball pants to get clean, and a lot of meals to pack for the ballpark. Needless to say, the pre-baking didn't happen. 

A few days before the party, my mom was kind enough to spend the day baking cookies with me. We baked and baked and baked, and then she baked while I ran errands for the party. It was really a fun day, and although it was a lot of work, we had fun together in the kitchen. We ended up baking more than 400 cookies, thinking we'd have leftovers for lunch with the family the following day. We did have a few left, but the bulk of the cookies were gobbled up at the party!

The party was a huge success. The bunting decorations and lovebird centerpieces I made turned out really beautiful, if I do say so myself, and the team of family and friends who helped me set up did an amazing job. We were done with time to spare, and I looked around the room at their faces, and at the transformation, and was just overwhelmed. I have a tendency to go crazy with planning events like this (my husband calls my planning notebook my "manifesto"), but I can honestly say it was more beautiful and more perfect than I had even imagined. I could have cried! (And possibly did.) Everyone came through for my parents, but then again, my parents always come through for everyone!

My sons and I each performed solos on our instruments, and my cousin Chelsea sang, and it was such a special afternoon. Each of my boys presented their grandparents with a special project they had made. Jake interviewed them and created a timeline of their lives with photos and hilarious commentary. Luke folded an origami heart for each year they have been married, and strung them up in a beautiful display. Will, who collects coins with my dad, found a penny from each year from 1965 to 2015, and we put them in a frame. We had more than 100 guests, including family from all over the country and friends from my parents' childhood. Everyone enjoyed visiting, looking at the hundreds of photos on display, and, yes, eating cookies! 

Here are the cookies we made for the big day:


Grandma Foust's Snickerdoodles

These are my dad's favorite cookie of all time, and I love them, too, because they make me think of my Grandma! So many cousins said they remembered her when they tasted these!

Get the recipe >>


Russian Wedding Cookies

My mom was given this recipe by a friend more than 50 years ago, before she met my dad! There's a reason she held onto it for so long ... it's amazing! These buttery tea cakes melt in your mouth!

Get the recipe >>


Oatmeal-Raisin Cookies

My mom made these for the party because they are fast and easy. I am not generally a fan of raisins in cookies because I have been tricked too many times thinking they were chocolate chips, but these are good!

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Aunt Dollie's Chocolate Chip Macaroons

I inherited a priceless heirloom from my Great Aunt Dollie: her recipe box. This was the first recipe I made of hers, and it has become a favorite at my house. These cookies are perfect!

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Coffee Bites

This recipe is actually a take-off on my Aunt Mary's Southern Comfort balls. She is famous for her Christmas treats, and these are everyone's favorite. For this occasion, we left out the rum and substituted coffee. They were great!

Get the recipe >>


Wedding Ring Donuts

This isn't actually a recipe, but a clever idea I found on Pinterest! I cut diamond shapes from white glittery scrapbook paper, drew on the facets with a gold marker, taped a toothpick to the back, and stuck them in pre-packaged mini powdered donuts to make wedding rings. These were a huge hit with the little girls at the party!

We also served egg-shaped candies and truffles to go with the "lovebirds" theme. I was smart and planned ahead, and bought all that candy right after Easter when it was half off, and stuck it in the freezer! (That was before baseball started.)

The day was all about memories, both reliving them and creating them! It was a very special weekend, and I'm so happy I could thank my parents for their example and guidance by putting this party together. The best is yet to come!

 

 

Comments (1)

lothringen wrote:
It's hard to post here on accounta the Security Question Box malfunctioning 'most the time, but Lisa your story is worth the effort! Thanks for sharing about your family and tantalizing us with those great looking cookies. I got a touch plump just reading!

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