"I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge.
That myth is more potent than history.
That dreams are more powerful than facts.
That hope always triumphs over experience.
That laughter is the only cure for grief.
And I believe that love is stronger than death."
~ Robert Fulghum

Thursday, August 11, 2011


My parents celebrated their 60th Anniversary on July 3. That got me wondering how common a milestone like that was. Since then I have been researching, trying to come up with some viable statistics (yes, it has been four weeks … okay, now it has been five weeks … I get side tracked every now and then … so). The best I could find was from the 2001 Census Bureau (SIPP) stating the then currently married women reaching their 50th anniversary, of 51,065 surveyed, 3,160 or 6.2% were still married (not counting widows).  Seriously_
Nadine Shaffer - 1951

My parents met on their first date, yes a blind date, on April 1, 1951. Larry was late. Nadine did not want to go out … should he showed up. My grandmother apparently thought that would not be appropriate behavior and told Nadine she would go out. Three months later on July 3, they married at 9:00 a.m. They had an evening reception (I had to ask my mom what they did all day, hmm).
Larry Hidalgo - 1951
Some history, my dad was USAF and in Tempe at ASU on TDY (learning computers). My mom was a nursing student at ASU. When his TDY was up, he was going home (Donaldsonville, LA) before reporting to his next duty at the American Embassy in Athens, Greece. Therefore, whirlwind romance and wedding in three months. My mom had never been away from home. She married and daddy whisked her away. She first met daddy’s family in Louisiana – Cajuns – and ate things she never dreamed: rice (that was not in rice pudding), gumbo, oysters, grits and many other foods. Strange foods plus the in-laws – she had no stomach for that, but they liked that Yankee girl.

Nadine and Larry Hidalgo - 1951
After meeting her new family, Nadine took her first airplane ride … Louisiana to New York to Greece. She only thought daddy’s family ate strange food. They had a Greek housekeeper and she cooked her specialty, Greek food. All those “firsts” and now married for 60 years. Wow!

Their secret, I can only guess, part of it is because they are best friends. They were away from their families so much, they were all they had. They were young, they had kids, they grew up with their kids, they were young when the kids were out of school and they had fun! I have never asked them. I just enjoy seeing it!

Some other firsts in July 1951:
  • #1 Rosemary Clooney - Come On-a My House
  • July 14, 1951 1st color telecast of a sporting event (CBS-horse race)
  • Citation becomes 1st horse to win $1,000,000 in races
  • Pres. Truman asked Congress to formally end state of war with Germany
  • Ty Cobb testifies before the Emanuel Celler committee, denying that the reserve clause makes peons of baseball players
  • Walt Disney's "Alice In Wonderland" released