Traditionally, the 40th anniversary gift is rubies. Now, a ruby coming from your child may not be the most appropriate or the most meaningful gift. Instead, try some of these heart-warming ideas for the couple celebrating their 40th married year.
Slide Show of Memories
If the children are older, have them put together a picture slide show or movie of their favorite moments with their parents. The pictures could be anything from vacations to holidays to a spur-of-the-moment weekend trip. Put some of the couples favorite songs to the slide show, and be sure to play it during their anniversary celebration. Have each child stand up and tell her parents why she selected one or two of her most favorite pictures for the show. The couple will not only be touched but will also be able to watch the sentimental gift for years to come.
Play up the ruby theme by purchasing a large, ruby-colored picture frame to place a children-only picture that has been professionally taken. Place this photo in the middle and then add smaller pictures of each child growing up around the outside. Be sure to get a good mix of the quirky, awkward moments along with the proud-parent memories to allow them to look and remember both funny times and tear-filled ones. The couple will be proud to display this visual scrapbook of their children's lives, just like they were when they framed the first pictures they made at school.
If the couple's children have all grown up and moved to opposite ends of the country, throw them a special party anyway. Be sure to play up how sorry you are that they could not attend the 40th anniversary celebration. At some point early in the party, have the children call, one by one, to wish their parents a happy anniversary. Then, once you have the coupe truly believing that their children really cannot be there--bring them out.
Make arrangements ahead of time to be sure each child can fly or drive back home for the party. Keep them out of sight until the evening of the party. Once their parents are busy opening presents or talking to other guests, sneak the kids up behind them while saying you have one more surprise for their anniversary. The couple will probably not know what to think--or say--when they see each of their children standing in front of them with ear-to-ear grins.