Friday, February 05, 2010

Inspiration from Real Weddings Friday

First year of marriage is sweet, ten years of marriage is lovely, fifty years of marriage - a WOW factor! Have you ever wondered how the couples maintain their marriage for so many years down the road? How to keep the romance going years after?

I came across this flashy title while doing my research for Valentine's blog posts via Real Simple the other day. Gillian Laub interviewed seven couples and had them shared the most unforgettable moments in their marriage life. And here's the result of the interviews.

Stella & Ben Sonnenschein: Married for 51 years and counting
"We don't sweat the small stuff."
"Peace and a good heart are the most important things."

To view their interview, please click here for a video clip captured by Gillian Laub.

Some secrets to their Happy Marriage:
1. "Ben doesn't say, 'I love you', and I don't force him to. Instead, I appreciate it when he brings me a sandwich in bed. Especially since he hates crumbs in the sheets," says Stella.
(Rachel: Thoughtful Ben~)
2. "Don't get angry over more than one thing at a time. People jump around from one issue to another," says Ben.
3. "We still kiss. We are affectionate. But it comes naturally. It doesn't happen for show. Sometimes we just lie down in bed and hold hands," says Stella.
(Rachel: That's sweet, Stella & Ben.)

Macon & Jim McDavid: Married for 51 years and counting
"Let's do what is right and good - and do it together."

To view their interview, please click here for a video clip captured by Gillian.

Some secrets to their Happy Marriage:
1. "In every family, someone's got to drive the bus. But sometimes you change positions. You say, 'OK, this is not my thing after all. It's your turn to drive.' All our marriage, Jim took care of our checkbooks. Then, three years ago, I realized I had these wonderful math skills and could do them easier than he could," says Macon.
(Rachel: I agree with you Macon. Always remember 'never try, never know'.)
2. "You've got to be able to trust your spouse. If she passes me the ball, I try to run with it. And if I pass her the ball, she does the same," says Jim.
3. "Jim loves to talk, so by now I've heard most of his stories. But they're all good ones, so I still happily listen. And for me? Jim thinks I can do just about anything," says Macon.

Ayako Kawakami & Harold "Pete" Petersen: Married for 53 years and counting

To view their interview video clip captured by Gillian, click here.

Secret to their Happy Marriage:
"When we just started out, Pete used to lose his temper a lot. The stress of his police job got to him. I always stayed calm, and soon he wanted to handle things like I do," says Ayako.
(Rachel: A good virtue (stay calm) to handle all challenges in life!)

Barbara & Morgan Barokas: Married for 54 years and counting

Some secrets to their Happy Marriage:
1. "Treasure the little moments. When I go grocery shopping, Morgan always says, 'Wait! I'll go with you!' His companionship has turned an uninteresting errand into something special. When Morgan was in the hospital last year for kidney problems, I wandered around Costco by myself, thinking how much I missed him," says Barbara.
(Rachel: This is a touching story. Hope Morgan to get well soon and join you for grocery shopping again!)
2. "Morgan is my 'calm down' person, who tells me everything will be OK when I'm not being rational. And I like to think I put spice and fun into his life that he wouldn't otherwise have. He thinks I'm nuts!" says Barbara.
3. "Communication is a big part of our staying married all these years. But as I get older, not being able to hear so much plays a big part, too," says Morgan.

Imogene & Elmer Edwards: Married for 55 years and counting

To view their interview, please click here for a video clip captured by Gillian.

Some secrets to their Happy Marriage:
1. "Never stop courting. We always try to see each other the way we did in our early days, even though I sure look different from that girl he married!" says Imogene.
(Rachel: Yes right, get the romance going ^.*)
2. "Elmer always takes my hand and leads me across the parking lot like I'm his girl and he's taking care of me," says Imogene.
3. "I take Imogene's hand and help her walk because otherwise she's liable to fall down," says Elmer.
(Rachel: Elmer, you are definitely a caring husband! Lucky Imogene! Hmm...hopefully my husband will do the same too =>)

Betty & Louis Chernoff: Married for 60 years and counting

To view their interview video clip by Gillian,
click here.

Some secrets to their Happy Marriage:
1. "We don't read newspapers at breakfast. We talk to each other," says Betty.
2. "Our clocks click exactly the same. Whenever Betty wants to do something, I want to do it, too," says Louis.

June & Bill Pritchard: Married for 64 years and counting
"June and I always felt like partners and friends, and that is the most important thing in any marriage."
(Rachel: This is golden!)

To view their interview, please click here for a video clip captured by Gillian.

Some secrets to their Happy Marriage:
1. "We don't get in each other's way. I don't challenge what Bill spends. And he knows better than to touch my computer," says June.
(Rachel: Aren't they are a cute couple?)
2. "If June makes a decision and I'm not there or vice versa, the other follows through. We always stayed united in front of our children," says Bill.
3. "Bill can be very knot-headed about things. When we have our spats, we each speak our mind and then we go on our way. We don't always expect everything to be resolved or to change the other person's mind," says June.
(Rachel: What a democratic couple!)

After reading and hearing the secrets of these lovely couples, do you have your stories to share? Have you ever approached your parents and asked them what their happy marriage secret is? (Shame on me...I have not done that...but I am going to do it when I visit my parents in Malaysia in a couple months later!)

Hope their stories and happy marriage secrets inspire you to build and maintain a good relationship with your partners, not just during Valentine's Day...Instead treat everyday a valentine's day and cherish your loved one every single moment you are together.

Happy Weekend everyone!
Do come back and check out our Chinese New Year postings next week! (Oh...I miss 'yu sang' in Malaysia so much, especially the one I had with my family!)

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