Chapel Valley Estate

Large yellow and red home surrounded by trees and an expansive outdoor patio with planters, tables and chairs

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Longevity. What comes to mind when you hear that word? How does it relate to your life? This is what Wester says:

Yes, that odometer belongs on our ’09 Honda Accord. Yes, it has been holding up. The only issue is the nut that holds the steering wheel! This was the first brand new vehicle that I have purchased. I joke that in order to get my moneys worth, I keep the car because when I bought it, I bought the package for XM radio which is good as long as you own the car. XM radio is essentially free now! The downside is that my back up camera does not work… well, it never had one, but they didn’t have them when I learned to drive either!

I know Honda has a good reputation for longevity, but what I have done over the years is to maintain the car. Taking it in for oil changes, tire rotations and any other items that comes up on the dashboard for maintenance items. Maintenance, or Preventive maintenance is the better term… Fix the problem before it becomes a problem!

Speaking of Longevity. Pat’s mom, Marian just turned 96 in February (Ground Hog Day!). Now, genetics can play a large part regarding our longevity, but maintaining a healthy lifestyle can also play a large part. Up until fairly recently, she has been active in her own way as she loved doing laundry, reading and helping at the B & B whenever and however she could. She stayed active, not only physically but mentally as well. She had a purpose, and she pursued it!

Another inspiration of longevity is a couple that I have met because of his son who I have had the pleasure of knowing. His name is Jack Eckenrode, Jack and his wife of 67 years (Yes, another example of longevity!) had been competing in the Senior Olympics since he was 70 years old. His wife has passed away as well as his new wife’s husband which occurred around the same time. At 96 years old, he will ride his bicycle 20 miles a day! As a cyclist myself, he is my inspiration! (Sorry, Marian, I never enjoyed doing laundry!) Here is a clip of Jack and some of his family after last years Senior Olympics: 95-Year-Old Jack Eckenrode Breaks Record For Oldest Cyclist to Complete 20K at 2023 The National Senior Games

When the word “longevity” comes up, one might think of a married couple, just like Jack who I just mentioned above who had been married for 67 years before his 1st wife passed away. In comparison, Pat & I have ONLY been married for 46 years. Like I said before, there is maintenance (trying to fix something – after it’s broke) and preventive maintenance… fix it before it breaks! That applies to relationships as well. Relationships have to be nurtured, to be proactive, to change the oil, so to speak! So make sure that you date often after the kids arrive!

How many people marry, anticipating they’ll get divorced? Probably very few? As for us, we determined early on that the “D” word would not be in our vocabulary. Not to say that we didn’t have issues between us, but once I got her straightened out… OK, humor can be a good thing to keep things light in the relationship as long as degrading the other person is not part of that humor… and it is her that has straightened me out (and still working on it!)

Another “Preventive maintenance” item to have for longevity in a marital relationship (or any relationship for that matter) is a strong faith, not just in each other, but in God, constantly working on a relationship with Him through His Son as well. After all, He is the author and finisher of our faith!

We try to do what we can to provide a place of respite for those that want or need to get away to replenish / rekindle that spark! We have also connected with FamilyLife and encourage couples to attend the “Weekend to Remember” and provide a savings by using “chapelvalleyestate” when they register.

Go for the long haul! Seek longevity!


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