A Woodloch Valentine's Tale
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~Shared by Tammy Compton
You can’t miss the signs.
Teddy bears hugging big red hearts; stuffed animals inviting you to press their paws to hear a declaration of love. And of course those tiny conversation hearts with their bright colors and popular messages: "Be mine", "Kiss me", "True love", "Hug me", and "Love you."
It’s everywhere. Even in the famous line from the movie “Juno” delivered by Ellen Page’s character Juno MacGuff, where she describes a boy she likes as “the cheese to her macaroni.”
So, who’s the peanut butter to your jelly, the milk to your cookies, or the beans to your burrito?
“As friends we used to 'hang out' in groups, and that's how we initially met. In high school, we traveled together with all our friends. I went to Walton HS (all girls school), and he went to DeWitt Clinton (all boys school) - both schools were in close proximity to each other in the Bronx. He was two years ahead of me...I was a freshman and he was a junior.
“It was not really love at first sight, but the more time we spent together, the more we bonded,” she said.
“I was drawn to him by his constant teasing and shy, but playful ways. Maybe his attraction to me was because we were basically both shy by nature (similar personality at first).
“Since we attended separate schools, our interaction with clubs, etc. didn't apply. But, he did carry my books home from school for me and always managed to escort me home from my part-time jobs. We were 'going steady' then.
“I was 17, Paul 19 when we became ‘a couple,’ and decided to spend our lives together. Basically it was a mutual proposal, and far from the fairy tale ‘getting down on one knee experience.'
“We shopped together for the ring in downtown NYC, and after I picked it out, the ring was on my finger before we left the store. Not very romantic, but tearful for sure; I remember always checking the beautiful sparkler on my finger. We were engaged for 1 year before the wedding. Our parents thought we were too young, but never objected,” she said.
“We were married at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Mount Vernon NY, on October 26th in 1963 and our vows were traditional, with a 2-ring ceremony. Our wedding reception was held at the Chateau Pelham in the Bronx for about 125 people. I remember it being a beautiful sunny day. Paul attended community college and became an electrician with Local 3 in NY - retired in 2003. I worked for the City of NY Civil Defense unit after HS, graduated college with a Business degree and retired from a major pharmaceutical company also in 2003,” Rosemarie shared.
The secret to 50 wonderful years?
“Being together for 50 years requires work on both sides. I am very fortunate to have a husband who is devoted, patient, kind and supportive. He is my best friend. We have total respect for one another and work together to achieve our goals. I tend to create and push for excitement, and he compliments my actions with the finishing touches. Very harmonious...,” Rosemarie said.
What have been some of the best moments along life’s journey?
“Our most exciting moments include the birth of our 3 children. First a son, born March 15 1965, and then twin daughters born August 17, 1966. Three little ones, all in diapers, no diaper service and living in an apartment. That was a challenge for both of us, financially, physically and mentally. But we did it, considered ourselves very blessed and wouldn't change a thing! Our children are all married, and we have 6 happy, healthy grandchildren, aged 23 to 7 years old. No great-grandchildren as of yet.
“The purchase of a run-down house on Fawn Lake in Hawley in 1997 was probably our next biggest adventure after raising our family. I remember seeing the house for the first time - Paul wanted to walk away, but he agreed to the purchase because I wanted it. Paul would never admit to his talents, and there's nothing he can't do, so I knew he would make this old house a real home. Together, we created a beautiful second home, which is where we spend most of our time. Having this home is how we've come to know Woodloch and meet wonderful new friends. We shop in the deli, order delicious birthday cakes, have gone to the shows, brought friends to stay at Woodloch and have been to the spa a number of times. If you've been there...you've gotta love Woodlochh.
“We selected Woodloch for our anniversary celebration because we love the atmosphere - it's warm, cozy and elegant. The food is great, and the staff is always willing to go out of their way to please.
“We plan to have 70-75 people celebrate our anniversary with us, some great family and friends from NY and PA; and yes, we do plan to renew our vows. Our love for each other remains solid - especially when your children marry, you find life revolves even more around each other.
“I've said plenty...maybe too much, but you get the drift. A great marriage, wonderful life with awesome family and friends, what more could anyone ask. Our cup runneth over for sure...,” she said.
Happy Anniversary Paul and Rosemarie Ravo :).