Dinner Party: Hope and Perspective!

How calming it is to be in the presence of older long-time friends with strong values. That is what we came away with last week, as our family of 5 was invited to dinner at the home of a couple now enjoying the retirement years.

I’ve known this couple for almost 30 years, having introduced my husband to them about 20 years ago, and we’ve exchanged many a meal over the years.

What I didn’t know this night was that Faye had made it a celebration dinner for my new book, The Reluctant Entertainer.

After hours of talk and the best food in Medford, we settled around the table and I heard stories that were brand new to me. People live interesting lives and when we open up and share, we leave with such a warm feeling in our hearts.

This particular couple has been a *”Balcony Couple” for our family, having raised their children many years ago. And I love how they like to serve others and they still wear aprons in their kitchen!


Just knowing that they’ve made it through the parenting years – and their kids have turned out wonderfully – gives us hope and perspective.


Their stories are also very inspiring to our children, which in our minds is something we need more of in America.

The older teaching and modeling strong values for the younger. (You can tell how cozy their home felt to our kids, who knew exactly how to make themselves at home.)


I have to tell you that Faye gave me the most beautiful card, so beautiful that I had to read it again and again to take it all in.

If you don’t mind, I’ll share with you a couple of profound statements that she made:

Your whole attitude about focusing on others is extremely important.

Perfection is often more about appearance than substance.

Amen, Faye. And thank you to a wonderful couple for a fabulous evening celebrating my new book. I was humbled and grateful for so much that night!

When’s the last time you dined with a couple that you felt you learned a lot from?

(As I refer to “Balcony People” you can read about my new E-Book, “Balcony Girls” HERE.)

13 comments on “Dinner Party: Hope and Perspective!”

  1. Pingback: Homemade Pear Applesauce - Reluctant Entertainer I Sandy Coughlin - Lifestyle, Entertaining, Food, Recipes, Hospitality and Gardening

  2. It sounds like it was a perfectly lovely evening. Thank you for sharing!

  3. I love hearing stories from the older generation. THey are such a blessing. When we lived with an older widow for 2 1/2 years, we heard many stories. She knew my hubby when he was little, and her stories were priceless. It’s so important that our children learn to glean from another generation.

    Great post Sandy. It’s been about a week since I’ve been able to read any posts, so I’m playing catch up!

  4. What lovely friends. Friendships that endure are so special.

    It’s been too long since we dined with those we consider mentors, unless my parents count. :) I need desperately to be more hospitable and have such good intentions.

    Congrats on your book. It’s not an easy feat and is commendable.

  5. I loved your post today Sandy. For many years our family had an older couple that reached out to us in so many ways. We now live across the country from them but from time to time we call and catch up with each other. I appreciated the remark about perfectionism and I wrote it down so that I can think on this a bit more.
    Thanks again Sandy for such a fun and important blog!

  6. What a blessing to have people like that in your life. In my Bible study this morning, we discussed how important it is for our lives to point others to Christ. I want to be that kind of person. I’m thankful for people like the older couple who invest in other peoples’ lives. And thank you for your push to bring hospitality back! I want people to feel welcome and wanted in my home more than I want for my house to look perfect. Your book is wonderful!

  7. Such a sweet post and I totally agree, this country could use more inter-generational gatherings. I love to hear stories of how things used to be and we can all learn from that, especially our kids. Nothing makes me happier than seeing a happy couple who has been together through the parenting years and who continue to enjoy each other. There is an older couple in our neighborhood and sometimes I see them walking and holding hands. Always makes me smile.

    -Rene

  8. Love it! Your blog is an inspiration to me as an older, barely wiser, newly married. Thanks for sharing your heart for hospitality and the wisdom you’ve gleaned from relationships with sweet couples like this one! xoxo!

  9. Faye is so right – perfection has become all about appearance, not substance.

  10. oops…I meant to say “wonderful people” in your life!

  11. How blessed you are to have such wonderful beautiful in your life! Your friends words were so poignant…perhaps you two should collaborate on another book!

  12. That is so sweet! People like that are hard to find these day. You are truly blessed my friend. Truly blessed.
    HUGS!

  13. There is a missionary couple here whom we love to get together with- the last time we were all together before we left for the summer was on Memorial Day. They are not too much older than we are- maybe 10 years- but we love listening to their wisdom and seeing how they parent and approach life and ministry.

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