Saturday, February 14, 2015

30+ Years & Still Smiling

Me & my handsome Valentine.
My Valentine and I have been married more than 30 years now so I thought I would write something clever like, “Our Top 10 Tips for Staying Happily Married.”  It always seems that those list-type articles grab my attention in magazines…so why not, right?  Well, I asked my husband over a yummy Japanese lunch (hold the rice please and bring extra veggies!) to give me his top 5 reasons why our marriage works.  This was met with a blank stare that quickly turned to panic. “You are catching me unaware,” he complained.  Never mind that the same handsome guy with the panicked look just hours before gave me a beautiful Valentine’s Day card, in which he wrote at least 3 reasons why we work. Tony knows how to express himself well in greeting cards. His messages always make me cry because he writes what he would never say out loud. I treasure those cards.

”How about just your favorite reason we work as a couple,” I pressed on.  He said, “You cannot print it.”  OK then.

Our discussion quickly turned to some light jabbing that continued as we walked into Food Lion to buy dinner fixings—because eating lunch makes us anticipate our next meal and we decided years ago that we stink at Valentine’s Day so we stay home and mostly ignore it.  I offered that our marriage works because I tolerate his hats. My man loves his baseball caps, derby hats, Stetsons, beanies—you get the idea.  He countered with, “Our marriage works because I tolerate your rhythmic breathing when you sleep.”  Tony is nice enough to lie to me and claim that while I do NOT snore, I often breathe rhythmically and sometimes rhythmically, loudly. 

Goofing around at our lake house.
As I am typing this, I realize that the reasons we work are all right here.  We work as a couple because we enjoy each other. Tony is my best friend and favorite port in any storm. We laugh together—sometimes even at each other, but always at ourselves. We adapt well to situations. We eat Valentine’s dinner at home after many failed attempts at Valentine’s Day dinners out  (one ending at a fast food joint where we both snapped at each other because we failed to make reservations and every place we tried was booked and we had already burned through $50 in babysitter money before settling for grabbing a burger).  It works for us.  We have also learned some expectation management. Expectation management should be part of wedding vows.

My guy cracks me up.
We dream together. Over our Japanese lunch, we were busy making plans and dreaming out loud. I love that.  We also are getting healthy together (skip the fried rice, please) and sharing common goals makes us work as a couple.  Cheering for each other when our interests are different is how we roll too. Tony has run marathons and I have run along taking photos, ringing a cow bell and holding up a sign. I am proud of his accomplishments. He will be the first one to read this blog and encourage me to write more.

We do tolerate the things we don’t love about each other. I try to ignore those hats and I have even grown to love his beard. He puts up with my snoring (I mean, rhythmic breathing) and all the curbside treasures I drag almost weekly into our home.

And then there are the reasons that cannot be printed…Happy Valentine’s Day!
But Wait!! There's More... 

I want to thank my Valentine for braving the cold temperatures to go outside and get some much needed repairs done. Tony and John Stenz (our awesome neighbor and favorite party animal) fixed some erosion problems on the side of our house, which included digging a very long trench in our frozen yard.  That says "love" to me.  J


  1. While you tolerate his hats he tolerates your headwear aka tiaras. Now that would be a fun scrapbook page...HIS and HER Headwear through the years!

    What an adorable couple you are...and an inspiration to all! Cheers to 30+ more years of FUN!!

    1. Thank you, Heather! Good idea for a scrapbook age!! xo