It was so wonderful to finally be able to gather together and celebrate the patriarch of the wonderful family I married in to. The Whitman family is a special group of talented and kind people and I’m honored to be a part of it for the last 16 years! My husband Justin’s father, Stuart, passed away last March right before the pandemic limited gatherings and although we are grateful that he was surrounded by family in his final days, we were all eager to gather together to safely celebrate his amazing life. That opportunity finally came last weekend when we were able to meet for a seated dinner of immediate family to share memories and stories of this beloved father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother and husband to those who were there.
I was honored to be in charge of the table setting at the San Ysidro Ranch, a few minutes walk from Stuart’s home. I reached out to friends in the Montecito area for recommendations for florists and Hogue & Co was at the top of everyone’s list. I sent them some photos for inspiration and they delivered these beautiful weathered pots filled with elegant arrangements. The seated family dinner was followed the next day with a gathering for more extended family and friends at Stuart’s home. Hogue & Co helped by designing the florals for the table so that they matched the exact size and amount we needed for the tables the following day. Dozens of vintage brass candles lined the table and place cards from The Left Handed Calligrapher noted every family member’s seat. My father-in-law was an actor and, in a nod to one of his most noted roles as US Marshall Jim Crown in Cimarron Strip, we added US Marshall badges to each place so that we could wear them in his honor.
It was a special celebration of a wonderful man and it meant so much to be able to gather and honor him.