The Legacy of a Folded Note

Some people make my day.

I look forward to seeing them.

They add a bounce to my step and a smile to my spirit.

        They can also change my life. 

A Wonderful Couple

Working in the health field, I had the privilege of meeting many people.

I always looked forward to seeing this wonderful couple.

They would greet me with a smile and a twinkle in their eyes. 

They appeared to have a very good relationship.

They would banter back and forth, always communicating respectfully with each other.

They would tease each other with the ease of many shared years of history and humour.

They Had Recently Celebrated Their 50th Wedding Anniversary 

I asked the gentleman, “what is the secret to your long term, happy marriage?” 

I thought he would respond with a humorous, witty reply such as “she puts up with me,” or “we have lived long enough.” 

        I did not expect his response. 

He opened his wallet, unfolded a well-worn piece of paper and handed me a note

He Had Written Down Five Words

  • Communication 
  • Autonomy 
  • Respect 
  • Acceptance 
  • Whose Agenda 

I Paused For a Moment

I did not know what to say.

This was not a response laced with wit and humour.

He was serious.

         He was divulging a very personal part of his life. 

His wife had been a busy, stay at home Mother, raising their three sons. 

After their sons had grown and moved away from home, she continued to lead an active life filled with many hobbies and interests.

His career had often taken him away from home. They had established a comfortable life with a consistent routine. 

A New Stage 

A year before he was going to retire, he and his wife went to see a counsellor.

This couple was concerned how his retirement may change the dynamics of their home and ultimately harm their relationship.

They wanted to be prepared for some of the challenges that retirement can bring. 

        The counsellor described five qualities that greatly influence the health of all relationships.

        The five words he had written down on this note.

Every Sunday Night

Sunday night is date night for this couple.

They open a bottle of wine and share an intimate dinner.

They review these five categories and ask, “how did we do this week?”

I thanked him for sharing.

I took these five words home with me. 

The Legacy Of This Folded Note

The conversation with this gentleman took place about ten years ago.

I often think fondly about this couple. 

The last time I saw them they were having increased health challenges.

 The unfortunate part of getting older. 

This Couple Enriched My Life

They inspired me with their thoughtfulness, respect and genuine love for each other.

They shared a very personal part of their relationship.

      They did not take their marriage for granted.

I would like to think they are still having their Sunday date night.

They are reviewing their common values and goals.

Communicating with kindness and love. Always with a twinkle in their eyes. 

This wonderful couple has changed my life.

They left me a legacy.

        I am unfolding this note and sharing with you. 

Do you recall someone from your past who inspired you? Made a positive impact on your life?

Behind the Scenery

Love

I have recently enjoyed reading inspirational and heartwarming books from two writers. They share contemporary, engaging stories about relationships and how love comes in many forms.

“A Home for Her Daughter” written by Jill Weatherholt.

Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Target. Amazon link

I look forward to reading “A Dream of Family” written by Jill Weatherholt.

Publication date: June 29, 2021 Available for preorder on Amazon

“Escape To Curlew Cottage” written by Joanne Tracey

Publication date:  March 12, 2021 Available for preorder now on Amazon. Australian Store – link will take you to your region

Date Nights

Photos

All photos of lovebirds taken by me in New Zealand, 2017

194 thoughts on “The Legacy of a Folded Note

  1. Aww, this is a wonderful and beautiful story of that couple and you and your hubby. I loved the images of the Lovebirds, and you and your hubby at the end. I hope you two have a lovely Valentine’s Day, and many, many more happy years together.

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    1. Thank you, Deborah, I have fond memories of this couple. I have not seen them since I stopped working, yet, I have never forgotten them. Grateful for our time together this Valentine’s Day and every day. Hope you are having a wonderful day, with people you love❤️

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    1. Thank you, Deb, I have fond memories of this couple. A great deal of teasing and smiling and I was surprised with the serious response. Love is shared in many ways. I look forward to getting together with you on a future hike. I will help you around Australia, and I have a ways to go in Iceland.💕

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  2. Beautiful post Erica thank you, highlighting the essential ingredients of a healthy marriage. And for them both seeking the wisdom of a counsellor before his retirement who provided them with the necessary clues in going forward into their later years. How easy it is to take things for granted and slink sideways into complacency. Very reflective post thank you .. I could learn from it – let me change that, not ‘could’, I will learn from this. Your photos are gorgeous! Have a wonderful week 🙂

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Susan. This couple has stayed with me in spirit all of these years. I agree with you, how one of the keys is to not take people and relationships for granted and become complacent. The lovebirds seemed to fit the theme. I hope you and your loved ones are well. We will stay connected.💕

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  3. Another pearl of wisdom. I do wonder about the meaning of “whose agenda”. That point eludes me as we always discuss “our agenda”. Perhaps their counsellor recognized they were on two separate paths and they needed to unite. People often talk about a marriage as being 50/50. Where love is concerned, I will always deliver to you no less than 100% without expectation of anything in return. I know you are of the same mind-set since you show me every day. I would like to add our philosophy of “Don’t both go crazy at the same time”. Walking away until cooler heads prevail has made for a peaceful marriage with minimal conflict. I love growing old with you. Retirement has given us the blessing of more time together to share our love. Happy Valentines Day.
    PS Erica/Erika this is your Covid card. LUL

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    1. Thank you, Hilary, for your kind, supportive words. The lovebirds seemed to fit today’s theme. I hope you are well and not too soggy, wet. We had a huge dumping of snow the past two days. It is calm, quiet and pretty. Spring will appear overnight this coming week. Take care.

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      1. I half heard about your dump of snow … something I remember well!! Glad you’re Spring is going to appear too … yes it is wet, soggy today! Ah well – the English complexion loves rain apparently … all the best Hilary

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  4. I admire your creative way of presentation Erica. Those adoring birds are a perfect symbol of love and yes love endures with respect and acceptance – two essential ingredients that nurture a relationship. The moment we accept the other person with all the traits, love grows and flourishes like an oak. Thank you for sharing a heart-warming post. Happy Valentine’s day.

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    1. I greatly appreciate your comment, especially coming from you, Balroop.❤️ You are right, how the qualities apply to all relationships. Acceptance is something I worked on over the years. Much easier now. I have fond memories of this couple. I learned how they did not take their relationship for granted. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your loved ones.💕

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  5. I love the birds and the colourful nest box. Yes relationships change with retirement and age. I like the idea of renegotiating the boundaries instead of just going with the flow.

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    1. You make a great point, Anne, how it is worth renegotiating the boundaries. Things change. Likely under the respect and communication categories. The lovebirds seemed to fit with the theme. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

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  6. What an incredibly heartwarming story of a wonderful couple and their journey together. We often take for granted what we’ve had for a long time but it’s true that all relationships need continued effort to help them thrive. Wise words, a lovely share and a beautiful way to start my week. Thanks Erica. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your hubby. Hope it’s filled with love and laughter. ❤️😊

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    1. I have fond memories of this couple, Miriam. They left a lasting impression even though I have not seen them for a long time. I agree with your point on possibly taking relationships for granted. I was surprised how this gentleman shared his counselling experience, even when in such a long term marriage. They did not take their marriage for granted. I had written a draft of this story a couple of years ago. The timing seemed right to publish it today. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your loved one. I realize we are a day, different. Yet, I suspect the day of love is every day at your home.❤️

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  7. I’ve seen many love-filled posts on this Valentine’s Day, but yours warmed my heart the most. I loved the wisdom of this couple and the significance of the folded note. Words have such power. It’s important we choose them wisely. Thank you for the book mention…such a nice surprise. I loved the photos of the colorful birds and of you and your husband. Happy Valentine’s Day! ❤

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    1. Thank you for sharing your supportive, kind words, Jill. You bring up a great point “words have such power.” I will ponder this more. I enjoy your books, Jill. You remind me how love shows up in many different ways.❤️ I think I am correct, how “A Dream of Family” publication date is June 29th of this year. And I know you are completing another book right now. I immediately thought about you and a Valentine’s post. I hope your hand/wrist is on the mend. I also suspect you and Derek celebrated Valentine’s Day. I appreciate you sharing the Love. ❤️Have a great week!

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      1. Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement, Erica. Unfortunately, wrist issue persists. I have put off having surgery because I have a book due next month and my day job requires computer use. Your are correct, my next book will be in stores June 29th. I’m hoping I’ll get premission to share the cover soon! I hope you had a wonder Valentine’s Day! xo

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        1. Huge darn on the wrist issues! I took a short video yesterday of visiting hummingbirds, thinking about you, Jill. We had a huge dumping of snow the past two days and the hummingbirds were pleased to find food that was not frozen ice.

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    1. You always know how to make me smile, Marty.🙂 I suspect you and Gorgeous had a lovely Valentine’s Day/Evening. We are planning a fondue for tonight. Always a treat. Take care.🙂

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  8. I enjoy your posts Erica. What a beautiful read on for Valentine’s Day. I love the pictures of all the lovebirds (you two included). Thank you for sharing such wisdom from this adoring couple. I love meeting people that enrich our lives in this way. Happy Valentine’s Day to you both! ❣️

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    1. Thank you, Karla, for your kind, supportive words. I had written a draft of this post about two years ago. Today seemed like a good day to publish it, along with the Lovebird photos. I know you ‘get it’ about people who enrich our lives. A real treasure and I suspect they often do not know how they made a difference. Valentine’s Day can result in mixed feelings. Love shows up in many ways. Have a great week.xx❤️

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  9. Hi, Erica – Those were five very powerful words written on that note. Thank you for sharing them with us. Immediately prior to our own retirement, a good friend of ours retired after a long workaholic career. His wife, who had successfully run their household for over 40 years, bitterly recalled how her newly retired husband suddenly began micromanaging everything in their home — all things that he hadn’t even noticed before. Although both husband and wife were (and are) incredibly awesome people, Richard and I took that lesson to heart. When we retired, we quickly divided up our household tasks so that no one stepped on someone else’s toes. That, along with a good measure of the advice you have shared here, has seemed to have worked! 😀

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    1. Hi Donna, As some of the comments point out, I am still a little uncertain about #5 “Whose agenda” yet, if I give it more thought it makes sense. This couple had a profound impact on my days and on my life. They did not take their relationship for granted. Interesting how some couples teach us what not to do. I have heard about other cases similar to the friends you mention. Like you say, wonderful people, yet difficulty adjusting to this new stage. You and Richard are a wonderful example of staying flexible, sometimes making changes, and always with love and respect. I hope you had a great weekend and I look forward to seeing you tomorrow.🙂

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        1. My interpretation is how only one person’s needs are met…one-sided. Still up to interpretation. I was caught off guard by this gentleman’s candid answer. Not taking a 50-year-old marriage for granted. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts, Donna. I look forward to seeing you soon. 🙂

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    1. Thank you, Anabel, for your kind, supportive comment. I have had this story sitting in a file the past two years and felt it was the right time to publish it. And like you say, the lovebird pictures fit the theme. Have a wonderful week. I look forward to reading your stories and seeing your photos. I always learn something new and interesting 🙂

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  10. What a beautiful post Erica and an honour for you to meet this loving couple. I have made a note of the 5 powerful words so generously shared with you. I also thought it was so perceptive of this couple to seek counselling before the next phase of their lives. So often, we hear that relationships falter when the dynamics of life change through retirement. I love the idea of date nights and we are never too old for those. Thank you for sharing this story, reminding us of the importance of a loving relationship and I also enjoyed photos of you and your love. xx

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    1. Thank you for your kind, supportive comment, Sue.❤️ I remember this couple with great fondness. They always made my day. I was surprised by the gentleman’s response. A couple who just celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary is still working on their relationship. They are not taking each other for granted. The lovebird photos seemed to fit the theme. I look forward to connecting with you, again, soon.xx❤️

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  11. As you said they obviously left a huge impact even if they weren’t friends so to speak. Celebrating 40 years this year and I think we’ve got the first 4. Still working on exactly what and how “whose agenda” applies. Thanks for sharing. Bernie

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    1. Congratulations on 40 years, Bernie! Your comment made me think and I did a mini research on “whose agenda.” Possibly how only one person’s needs are met in a relationship. One-sided. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

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        1. I didn’t give number 5 too much thought until I began reading the comments. I often learn a great deal from the comments and the different perspectives. I recall reading in your post about “the love of your life,” Bernie. You likely have these five points all figured out.🙂

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  12. I love long term marriages and couples who still love each other after decades together Erica. Love and Respect have been key qualities for us too – especially respect in regard to how you treat your husband – no man likes to be made to feel small (and it works in reverse too). I’m wondering what “whose agenda” looks like when it’s being lived out? Any enlightening would be welcome.
    I also think checking in with each other regularly is important too – I’ll often ask Ross how his happiness level is going or how he slept or little things like that – I don’t want to feel that we’re not on the same page and that he might be not feeling bright and I don’t pick up on it (it’s trickier when you’re married to an introvert when it comes to discerning feelings and behaviour).

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    1. Your comment made me think about long term marriages. Possibly luck and the journey we are on this planet. Possibly, certain marriages are not meant to last a lifetime. I gave “whose agenda” more thought. My interpretation is how only one person’s needs are met…one-sided. You make an excellent point on checking in with your partner. And I know you are aware how a great deal of communication is non verbal. Thank you for your thoughtful input, Leanne.xx

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  13. Delightful post, Erica. I think there is wisdom in listening to what others have done to last a long time, and more importantly, what makes their marriage/love special. I was blessed to have the best role models as my parents had great love and respect for one another. They occasionally had words, like any couple, but I don’t ever remember anything carrying over to the next day. I do remember both of them apologizing at times. I still think the most important ingredient for most marriages is communication.

    I liked the man’s list, but I also had the same reaction as the other blogger about “whose agenda?” The other ones come across as so positive, but perhaps this was something specific to their marriage that we’re not privy to.

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    1. A beautiful thing to say about your parents, Pete. A good reminder how we lead by example, especially when it comes to our children. I wholeheartedly agree with you about communication. Even when the subject is uncomfortable, it is always better to have it out there (tactfully) and possibly timing. Also, to clarify points. We still giggle about incidences where we were speaking the same language, yet talking about something totally different. “The centrepiece” is one of our examples. A separate story.

      I gave more thought to your comment about “whose agenda.” My initial interpretation is how only one person’s needs are met….one-sided. You said something very interesting, how it may have been something specific to their relationship. Thank you for your thoughtful input, Pete, today and always!🙂

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  14. Erica, this story gave me goosebumps! I had to share it on Twitter as well. Such a beautiful memory and inspiration. How do you thank people who leave such an impact on your own life? By paying it forward like you do. I love that note and agree fully with the items on the list. I just don’t understand the last one, “Whose Agenda”…

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    1. Thank you for your thoughtful, supportive comment, Liesbet. Especially coming from you. 🙂You are right about paying it forward. They likely do not know the impact they had on me and my life. I wrote a draft about this story about two years ago. Yesterday seemed a timely day to publish it, along with the lovebirds. A number of the comments wondered about “whose agenda.” My interpretation is how only one person’s needs are met…one-sided. Another comment suggested how it may possibly have been specific to this couple. Thank you for the share, Liesbet. I hope you two lovebirds are doing well.❤️

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  15. Hi Erica/ Erika, Thank you for sharing the five powerful words and your beautiful lovebird photos. I don’t know the special couple that you met but I have you and Chuck who put those words into practice to admire. You know the expression “Actions speak louder than words”. You put the five wise words into actions. Congratulations!

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      1. My take on the “Whose agenda?” question is that it helps each person pause and think. At the end of the day, for a loving marriage to last, there is one mutual agenda and mutual end goal. It circles back to the previous points (communication, acceptance, respect while maintaining autonomy). Thank you, Erica/ Erika, for linking this post with Weekend Coffee Share.

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        1. A few people questioned “whose agenda” and I like your interpretation using the word “mutual.” Just the act of pausing and thinking shows how two people value this relationship. Thank you for setting up and organizing the coffee share, Natalie. ❤️ It has a great vibe and fun to read the various posts.🙂

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  16. I have never really thought about this, Erika, or life after retirement, but the items on that note are very important. How wonderful that this couple took a step like this to ensure that his retirement didn’t result in domestic harm and upheaval. I know a few retired people who’ve gone through a rough patch when the husband tried to interfere in certain aspects of running the home after many years of the wife doing it.

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    1. I suspect this couple was never really aware the impact they had on my days and on my life. I was moved by how this gentleman shared something personal, and how they were still ‘working’ on their marriage after 50 years.This story is a way of paying it forward. I had this sitting in a draft folder for the last two years. Yesterday seemed the right time to hit, publish. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Robbie.

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    1. Thank you for your kind, supportive comment, Suzanne. I had this story sitting in a draft folder for the last two years. Yesterday felt like the right day to hit, publish. I have never forgotten this gentleman’s candid answer. You are right about five great words for a happy marriage.

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  17. Hi Erica,

    What a heartwarming post presented in such a clever way. Those lovebirds are gorgeous! How profound to have received that note in answer to your question as opposed to the customary response. To be married for 50 years and still in love and respect for each other is a gift to be treasured. And the photos of you and your hubby show that you believe this, too. Beautiful! I can honestly say that every word on that note has been inserted into the 32 years my husband and I have been married. We are still each other’s best friend, along with all the other roles that follow. I am a lucky girl and do not take my marriage for granted. As we grow older, we’ve had friends who have lost their spouses. I can’t even imagine. So, we live each day in gratitude. Thank you for sharing this touching story. xo

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    1. Thank you, Lauren, for your thoughtful, kind comment. I was moved by this gentleman’s candid response. Like you say, as opposed to the customary response. This couple did not take their marriage for granted. I do not want to think about the alternative. This moment in time is precious. Congratulations Lauren to you and your husband for 32 years! I wish the both of you many, many more happy, healthy years together.xo

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      1. You said it well, not wanting to think of the alternative. How long have you and your husband been married? I’m thinking about the same as us or a little longer…at any rate, I wish you both many, many more joyful years together, too. Finding that special life partner is a gift. xo

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        1. We have been married 42 years. We are definitely at the extra precious stage of time together. Yet, we do have our separate activities throughout the day/week. Seems to be a key in the long term happiness. Despite some of the challenges, I hope all is well with you. I woke up to a super, sunny morning, versus the dumping of snow we had the past few days. Yeah, Spring! Take care, Lauren, and I look forward to staying connected. xo

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  18. What a beautiful story, Erica, and your pictures of the birds on their colorful perches are gorgeous! I love that those five words stuck with you for so long (and, I love even more that the man had them folded in his wallet). A happy marriage takes work, especially when it changes paths (like through retirement). That couple was so smart to get help knowing that there would be challenges.

    Just for fun, I googled “Whose agenda?” and found an interesting article on Huffpost (Whose Agenda Are You Living By? by Sarah Liddle) that offered some insight into what that might mean.

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    1. Thank you for your kind, supportive comment, Janis. I wrote a draft of this story about two years ago. I felt yesterday was the right time to hit “publish” along with the photos of the lovebirds. Your comment reminds me how it is better to get help before a relationship has serious issues. Like you say, a happy marriage takes work. I just now read Sarah Liddle’s article about “Whose agenda…” Great points that apply to everyone’s life and relationships in general. I hope you and Paul are well and able to enjoy some of the ocean scenery and air.xo💕

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  19. You’ve crafted the perfect Valentine’s Day post, Erica: a heartwarming story of a committed couple, good advice for the transition to retirement, personal photos of you and your husband, and lovebirds! Brava!!

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    1. Thank you for your supportive and encouraging words, Liz. I think you are the first person to mention “committed couple.” A key point, on how two people have to want to make it work. I had drafted this post about two years ago, and decided this past Sunday was a good day to hit “publish.” And, the lovebirds fit the theme. I hope all is well with you. I know you are spending a great deal of time doing research for your next book. Take care and I greatly appreciate your lovely comment.

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      1. You’re welcome, Erica. Sunday was a perfect day to hit “publish” for post! I look forward to your next one. I always leave your site feeling uplifted.

        All is well with me, juggling writing work and day job work.

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    1. Thank you, Eduarda. I had this story sitting in a file the past two years. This past Sunday seemed a good day to hit “publish.” Love shows up in many ways. One way, is a good friend. ❤️

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  20. What a lovely story and such wonderful advice. I love that no matter how long they’d been married, this couple continued to proactively check in on their relationship. There is an important lesson there for all of us in protecting and nurturing our important relationships. Thank you for sharing this. And, I must say, the bird photos are beautiful. Nice work.

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    1. You are right, Christie, how this couple was proactive in their relationship. I fondly remember them for many reasons. This story has always stayed with me. I wrote a draft about this couple about two years ago and kept it in a file. I felt this past Sunday was a good day to hit “publish.” I love your words, “protecting” and “nurturing.” Great points for all relationships that are important to us. I know you walk the talk, Christie.❤️ Thank you for your thoughtful words.xx

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    1. Thank you for your supportive comment, Betsy. The “whose agenda” was brought up a few times in different comments. Possibly how only one person’s needs are met in a relationship. One-sided. Funny how you brought this point up just now. My husband and I just finished giggling about we will work on #5 today. I still have fond memories of this couple for many reasons, even though I have not seen them in many years.

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  21. Such a beautiful story you’ve shared with us Erica and those beautiful love bird phots are stunning! I like the fact that he answered you this way and he obviously trusted you enough to share this very personal part of his life. What a gift! I’m so pleased you hit publish on this and shared it with us, the perfect day for it!

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    1. Thank you for your kind, supportive comment, Deb. I often think fondly about this couple. You are the first person who mentioned “what a gift.” I love this and I will now think about them as a gift brought into my life. I have been keeping this post in a draft folder for a couple of years now. Valentine’s Day…Lovebirds…felt right. Thank you for being a gift in my life, Deb.xx

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  22. I love it when we meet people – strangers – who make a huge impact on us with some “small” gesture or thought or in your case a note. Probably every person in a relationship should tuck a note like this in their wallet or purse! What a lovely story of a beautiful couple. One of my lasting memories of something like this occurred when my kids were still quite young, like 3 and 5 years old. I took them to a fun Italian restaurant, where we waited anxiously for my guy /their dad to meet us from work. When he came, they bounced up and down and we ordered our spaghetti and just talked and laughed. During this time I noticed an “older” man watching from a small table by himself (older – probably in his 50s, but at the time I was in my 30’s). He left the restaurant at the same time the waiter brought a bottle of Chianti to our table with a note for my husband that said, “You are a lucky lucky man. Never forget that.” The waiter said, “the gentleman who just left paid for this and asked me to bring it to your table.” Wow. I’ve always wondered what his story was. ❤

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    1. Wow, Pam, this is such a beautiful story. His words brought tears to my eyes. The words, the emotion behind the words, possibly the loneliness at this stage of life. Life is a whirlwind with small children. Yet, we both know how precious time is. He left you a legacy with his words. I appreciate you passing them on to me. ❤️

      I have fond memories of this couple for many reasons. Like you say, a small gesture can make a huge impact. Thank you for sharing your lovely, moving story.❤️

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  23. Erica, a beautiful post celebrating the relationships and the secret behind them! It is touching how the gentleman opened up to you so readily with his note. Wow! Five core points to any successful relationship and what a wise couple to first seek help before his retirement, understanding the huge impact this would have on their lives and also for weekly going through the points on their date night. It doesn’t get much better than that! 😀😃 The photos to accompany your post are stunning, I stopped by every one of the Lovebird images to savour their beauty, love and affection between each other. Truly glorious and a vibrant and colourful impact on my day! Ahhh … it’s lovely to see the photos of you and your husband, wonderfully close, caring and loving – bet you’re still over the moon you took that gamble! hugs xx ❤️

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    1. Thank you, Annika, for your kind, thoughtful words.❤️ I have fond memories of this couple. I was taken by surprise when this Gentleman became serious and shared his personal story. Even though I try to not take people/relationships for granted, I appreciate and need the reminders.

      I had this post in a draft folder for the past two years. Valentine’s Day… Lovebirds… seemed a good day to hit “publish.” Thank you for your kind note about our personal photos. I added the pictures at the last minute. I always like looking at photos of friends. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, here, Annika. I know you are a busy lady, completing projects right now. I always greatly appreciate your beautiful energy. xx ❤️

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      1. Erica, it great that your draft of two years ago as well as last minute family photos made it to this wonderful post! 😀 Thank you … you are right about busy with the new project. Two days of electricians and now there is light in my new studio!! Just over a week until I can move in – I’m ecstatic … a dream talked about for most of last year now a reality! Xx

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  24. an inspiring post, those five words are key to any relationship not just mariage!

    Glad your marriage is doing well 🙂 I have friends who see a couples counsellor every year whether they need it or not … I’m impressed with their investment in never taking the relationship for granted 🙂

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  25. First…those photos of the lovebirds (the actual birds) are so pretty – colorful and interesting. I hope my hubby and I feel the same way about each other as the couple you wrote about when (if?) we have been married 50 years. We got married the same year as you – 1978. August 26. Wonderful photos of you and your “lovebird”! 🙂

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    1. I’m told we were married on August 12. Due to a head injury, I lost memory of that. I do remember be re-wed about 6 yrs ago, now, when we found out that the state we were married in had lost our marriage license.

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        1. It was lost in transition to digital… So now, we joke about it. We remarried on our 20th anniversary… So we’ll be celebrating our 6th -and-26th this year! We wouldnt have known had we not had a situation in which we needed a certified copy to replace one that was lost on House fire years ago.

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    2. Congratulations, Laurie, about you and your husband’s Anniversary and a coincidence how it is in the same year as us. I have never forgotten this couple for many reasons. They were the highlight of my day and still inspire me. Although, I have not seen them for a very long time. Thank you for your kind words about the photos. Lovebirds seemed to fit the theme. Now my husband and I?….possibly a couple of old birds….yet, still lovebirds xo 🙂

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  26. When we married 25 yrs ago, we passed around a blank book for everyone to write advice for us. By the end of the afternoon, all three books were filled to the last line. Over the next few weeks, we read the advice to each other and made some important “traditions” for our young family… Most of the advice centered around good communication and giving each other freedom to be who they were. It has served us well, I believe. I often tell new couples the same thing. Sadly, we seen that simple failure to communicate lead to one divorce, and inlaws who have no clue about who each other is… and in case of parents…now that they’re retired, can’t stand each other. So very sad. They say they envy our relationship… we just smile at each other and tell them they could have what we have if they just talked TO each other once in a while.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nice to meet you, Bear. I was visiting your fun and interesting blog this afternoon. I am in awe how three books were filled on your wedding afternoon, sharing advice. You bring up a great point how “good” communication is the key for all relationships. The couple in this post inspired me in many ways and I will never forget them. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughtful comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I used to work elder care and got advice constantly. Now, I wish I’d written a lot of it down. Most of it, though, I’ve incorporated into my life. Thanks for the visit! -Bear.

        Liked by 1 person

  27. I loved this, that would have stayed with me as well. I believe in regular date nights too, even when you see each other every day. Sitting together with no distractions from the TV or whatever allows you to have a more in depth conversation. Thankyou for sharing regards Christina

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    1. You make a great point, Christina, about having date nights even when we see each other every day. We have separate interests and often do not communicate until the evening. I like your words “in depth” conversation. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughtful comment.🙂

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  28. What a perfect Valentine’s story, Erica. Vince and I used to have morning meetings to make sure we were getting everything done. We fell out of that habit when the stress of moving subsided. But we enjoy our meals and our hikes together. I love your bird pictures and all your lovebird pictures, too. 🙂 Thanks for sharing this. BTW, it would have made a perfect link on Frank’s #WQWWC (Writer’s Quotes Wednesdays Writing Challenge) post on “love”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Marsha, Thank you for your kind, supportive comment. I cannot imagine the stress of moving. We have lived in our home for almost 30 years. Lucky at this point to manage all the stairs. It sounds like you and Vince are having mini dates every day with the walks and meals. The lovebirds seemed to fit the theme here. Have a wonderful week.🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We had lived there for 20 years and it was stressful. Seriously like a vacation here and we both love it. We’re not so far from CA and we’ve had two friend come by since we got here. You have a wonderful week, too, Erica.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. If you have the space and aren’t moving, it doesn’t matter too much. If you downsize, then bye bye stuff! I still have about 20 boxes in our garage and Vince’s sister’s garage that I don’t need immediately. I’ve lost some things I do need, but they were so replaceable. Sad.

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            1. You inspired me this weekend, Marsha, even with putting the thoughts foremost in my mind. I spent this morning sifting through and purging a corner of my house. I have to start somewhere.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. You will feel good about it Erica. I felt so relieved when we left CA to have purged myself of so much stuff that I never used. Now I’m buying it all back again!!! 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

  29. Hi Erika, what a lovely post. These days, with divorce and broken families all around us, I love hearing tales of love and commitment. I’m hoping that my husband and I will be an inspiration to others when we’re old(er) and grey(er). We don’t have set date nights, but we do often have special dinners and spend time talking to each other and sharing our thoughts, plans, and ideas for our future life together. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am with you, Cheryl, how I love hearing good stories. I am always curious about happy couples. It sounds like you and your husband spend time enjoying each other’s company and always communicating. You remind me of the concept of ‘friendship.’ A treasure to have as your partner in life. Thank you for sharing your thoughtful comment.🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m very surprised that I am part of a ‘happy couple’ actually! The first 40 years of my life didn’t give me much hope of ever being in a functional and happy long term relationship. I must give a lot of credit to my husband, he’s one in a million, a great, kind, generous and wonderful human being. I thank God for sending him to me, I’ve certainly learned a lot about being part of a couple by being married to Olivier. This year we celebrate 12 years of marriage and we both know it’s for life. I’m lucky and I really do know it!

        Liked by 1 person

  30. Well that person who wrote the five words was indeed wise beyond measure.
    The dynamics of a relationship does change with retirement. I am still navigating that. The five tenets are a useful guide. We don’t have a date night but go for a date lunch once a week.
    Thanks for posting. I enjoyed reading.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Amanda, I have very fond memories of this couple. They were consistently kind and thoughtful to everyone. It took a couple of years to get into a bit of a groove after we stopped working. Then the restrictions added to the 24/7 togetherness. We do have many separate interests which helps. And, as you well know, communication is key in all relationships. I like the concept of date lunches. I am still awake at that time. 🙂Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Amanda 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. So you are still awake at lunchtime? That is good. My Moth likes to have several daytime naps or SCANs ( senior citizen afternoon naps) that are not restricted to afternoons. I don’t like to nap during the day, or in fact only nap if I am unwell. But, like you alluded, energy levels are definitely higher in the morning.
        Good to know others took a few years to work out a new regimen for a retired couple.

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    1. Hi Mary Ann, I have fond memories of this couple. Their consistent kindness always made a difference in my day. I like your words “enduring love story.” I was a little surprised how they thought ahead and saw a counsellor. A great message how to not take anyone or anything for granted. Thank you for your kind, supportive comment. Have a wonderful weekend! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Erica/Erika, My pleasure. The idea of a folded note to carry around as a reminder is touching. At church we are celebrating 200 yrs. of Elizabeth Ann Seton. For world marriage Sunday we prepared “napkins” which included three sentences to complete. “Recently, I was grateful when you________” “Over the past week, I apologize for _______” “In the coming days, may I serve you by_____” My husband and I participated. We help others by just BEING. Enjoy the weekend. “”__””

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Another note on world marriage Sunday. At the end of the service, married couples were to stand and keep standing by number of years. We had one couple married 64 years. The years were rounded. At 40 we had to be seated again. Married 38 years now. 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  31. This is just beautiful. Thanks for sharing. We have date nights at home but I truly believe we could put more effort into being present. I loved the pics you used to illustrate too. Thanks also for the shout out – I truly appreciate it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You said this beautifully, Kirstin “I love encountering people who just change my life by walking in the door, even in the simplest of ways.” This is how I feel about this couple. They always made my day. Thank you for sharing your thoughtful words.

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