"Today marked All My Children's 30th anniversary. The show premiered as a half-hour soap on January 5, 1970.

On the sofa, Janet hugged the Christmas angel close to her chest. Trevor wandered into the room to find out why his wife was having trouble getting to sleep. Janet told Trevor that she'd been sitting up thinking about the person she'd used to be. Trevor urged her to forget who she used to be and focus more on who she had become. Janet bowed her head and reflected on the day she and Trevor had legally become husband and wife. Both agreed that they finally had gotten everything they'd ever wanted. Outside, a figure raced past the window. Janet leapt from her husband's arms and headed for the porch. Outside, Janet pleaded for her and her family to be left alone. Trevor appeared by her side a few seconds later and told her to join him back inside the house.

"I am not going to lose my wife and child," Adam snarled through gritted teeth. Not wanting to overstate the obvious, Marian looked at Adam and informed him that he already had. She asked Adam why anyone would want to be close to him after all the horrible things he's done. Adam closed his eyes momentarily and recalled one of the many times that he'd hurt someone he'd supposedly loved. He remembered how he'd turned to Dixie to father his child after learning that Brooke, his wife at the time, was unable to have children. "I had the best reasons for everything I did," Adam argued. Marian shook her head and coldly stated that Adam only thinks of himself. Marian walked out of the room leaving Adam alone with his thoughts. He looked longingly at the locket he'd given Liza. He remembered the time when he and Liza were very much in love. Tears in her eyes, Liza had asked Adam, "Who are you?" Haltingly, but confidently, Adam looked deep into her eyes. "Don't you know?" he replied. "I'm you!" Back in the present, Adam vowed that "the people who tried to keep us apart will pay with their souls!"

Myrtle used her key to let herself into Erica's home. Erica was glad to see her good friend, but a bit remiss that she had left before she could hang her ornament on the Tree of Humanity. Erica stated that she needs "more than memories" in her life. Myrtle gently cocked her head to one side and asked Erica if she could really see a future with David Hayward. "I can imagine it," Erica said with a smile. "At least I think I can." Myrtle mused that she'd be a rich woman if she had a nickel for every time Erica claimed to be in love. Erica pursed her lips together and jokingly asked Myrtle if there wasn't someone else who needed her advice. Myrtle chuckled and agreed that she should be returning to Wildwind. "I hope 2000 brings you everything you hope for," she said with a broad smile. She stopped for a second and added, "Within reason." Erica thanked Myrtle for stopping by and continued getting ready for bed. She stopped to look at a photograph of Mona. She fondly recalled the advice her mother had given to her over the years --- even if she didn't want to hear that advice when it had been dispensed. "You really have to stop watching those soap operas," Erica once snapped at Mona. "They are scrambling your brains." To that, Mona quickly replied, "You know, Erica. With a daughter like you I don't have to watch soap operas --- I live in one!" Tearfully, Erica placed the picture back on her nightstand. She gently rubbed her mattress and reflected on another of her loves --- Dimitri. She reminisced about her trip to Budapest with Count Andrassy and the waltz they shared in their full royal garb. The memories were quickly followed by an image of David professing his love to her. Erica finally crawled into bed, but she didn't have a chance to drift off. The sounds of someone playing the piano lofted into her bedroom. She called out David's name and walked towards the door. Suddenly, David appeared before her with a smile on his face and a sling on his arm. "You shouldn't sleep alone the first night of the new millennium," he beamed.

At Wildwind, everyone gathered in the ballroom to hang their ornaments on the tree. "Maria and Dimitri believed that life was more fulfilling the more you gave," Edmund announced. Another pair had also been instrumental in Pine Valley history. All eyes turned towards Joe and Ruth. Edmund referred to them as "the two people who have made Pine Valley feel like a home more than anyone else." Greenlee walked over to Ryan and asked him why he wasn't holding an ornament. "I'm not into nostalgia," he replied as he rebuked Greenlee's attempt to seduce him. Ryan was unable to take his eyes off of Gillian and Jake.

Dixie asked Tad if he thought that they would ever make it to their thirtieth anniversary. Jake, who'd been dancing in the background, stepped forward with some sage advice. "Wanting it and reaching it are two different things," he said. Tad remembered how he'd first asked Dixie to marry him. Dressed in a chicken suit, Tad hid Dixie's engagement ring in a take-out box.

From across the room, Mateo and Hayley exchanged glances, but neither one took the first step to walk towards the other.

Phoebe told Brooke and Jack that she was afraid she'd "weigh down" the tree with memories when she placed her ornament. As she did, Phoebe urged her niece to "do more living and more loving." Brooke rolled her eyes and remembered a lecture her aunt had given her about her one-time relationship with Benny Sago. In the conversation, Phoebe had insisted that she was "not trying to be a busybody." Brooke confessed that she doesn't like to think about the past very often. Both Jack and Phoebe knew that Brooke was still pained by the memories of losing her daughter, Laura. Brooke lowered her head and remembered how Tom Cudahy had broken the news of their daughter's death. Brooke angrily and tearfully hit Tom's chest as she tried to deny the horrific truth. "There are so many what ifs in life," Brooke sighed. Jack looked up towards the ceiling and said that if given the chance to go back in time, he'd still make the same mistakes over again.

Ryan removed his ornament from his pocket and slowly walked towards the Tree of Humanity. As he did, he thought about his wedding day and how he'd talked Gillian out of marrying Scott.

Next in line was Opal. She told Tad and Adrian that her memories would only be of pleasant things. "I am not gonna waste one second of this new year on regrets," she proclaimed. But with a glance over in Palmer and Vanessa's direction, Opal was momentarily distracted. She remembered her reaction when Palmer had presented her with a diamond engagement ring. Palmer looked at Opal and couldn't help but have a few memories of his own --- but they were not of Opal. "This is the year," Vanessa told him," that I'm going to make you forget that there was any other woman in your life." Palmer reflected on a September meeting he'd had with Daisy, arguably the true love of his life.

Brooke and Edmund gently nudged Mateo about the "circling" he and Hayley had been doing all night. Edmund urged him not to waste even a second of time. "You think you have unlimited time," he said sadly. Brooke knew exactly what Edmund was talking about. She was still unable to shake the images of the plane crash that had taken Maria's life. "When you find something that runs so deep, you do everything you can to hold on to it," Edmund said prophetically. Edmund's mind wandered back to his wedding day, the day that he'd married the love of his life, Maria.

Myrtle returned to the party and sat down beside Phoebe. The two women talked about how Phoebe had helped Myrtle out of a homeless shelter. While Phoebe wanted Myrtle to be grateful for the help, Myrtle knew that Phoebe had had ulterior motives. Phoebe had needed Myrtle's help in breaking up Linc and Kitty. Myrtle confessed that Kitty was the closest thing she'd had to a daughter --- except maybe for Erica.

Scott quietly hung his ornament on the tree and thought about how Stuart had come into his life so many years before. The memory, of course, could not help but be tied to the untimely death of his mother, Cindy.

Tad continued to watch Joe and Ruth and he found himself wondering what it takes for a union to last so long. He thought about the many mistakes he'd made along the way, most notably when he dated a mother and daughter (Marian and Liza Colby) simultaneously.

Edmund once again appeared before the crowd and asked them to celebrate the lighting of the Tree of Humanity. As he did, he recited what prompted Agnes Nixon to create All My Children thirty years prior. "The great and the meek, the rich and the poor, the strong and the weak, in sickness and in health, in triumph and tragedy, we are all God's children."

Sophie lurked outside the Dillon house with a crowbar in hand. Janet sat unassumingly on the sofa as Trevor slumbered upstairs. Trevor finally awoke and realized that his wife was missing and set out to find her. He joined her on the sofa as Hayley returned home wearing a smile from ear to ear. From her expression, Janet and Trevor knew that Hayley had had a great time at the ball. Hayley made no mention of the kiss she and Mateo had shared. Trevor and Janet headed upstairs, while Hayley sat alone and thought about her night. She walked over to the window and looked outside. A few flurries gently fell outside. "Goodnight, Mateo," she said softly. Across town in his condo, Mateo was also looking outside at the nighttime sky. "Goodnight, Hayley," he whispered.

Back home in their bed, Joe and Ruth looked at the photo album and thought about all that has gone on in the past thirty years. "So much seems to have changed," Ruth said with a bit of sorrow in her voice. Joe concurred. "For a small town, an awful lot goes on in Pine Valley," he noted. "It's been a great thirty years. The next ones are going to be even better.""

- Soap Central