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Perth couple’s sweet Valentine’s tradition spans four decades.


Forget the flowers and chocolates this Valentine’s Day, a Perth couple’s beautifully simple tradition has lasted almost four decades.
Great-grandparents Leslie and Jeanette Anderson say the simple gesture — a single card filled with love notes dating back to 1983 — has kept the spark alive and is showing no signs of getting old.
Great-grandparents Leslie and Jeanette Anderson marked their 60th anniversary last month.
Great-grandparents Leslie and Jeanette Anderson marked their 60th anniversary last month. (9News/Tracy Vo)

“It’s just something that evolved. It didn’t start out with an idea and we didn’t plan on it,” the 83-year-old war veteran says.

The Valentine’s Day card has a series of arrows to follow the years of messages and space is getting a little tight, so on the back, the great grandfather has started a scroll.

On the front of the card is a large cartoon bear.
On the front of the card is a large cartoon bear. (9News / Tracy Vo)
This card is filled with love notes dating back to 1983.
This card is filled with love notes dating back to 1983. (9News/Tracy Vo)

“I get teary because it’s something I can hang on to and it’s always there. I know he loves me,” Mrs Anderson says.

“I need that card and I need him.”

This morning, Mr Anderson placed the card on the couch in their Girrawheen home in the northern suburbs.

It was waiting for his wife as she put the kettle on.

Every year, he finds a different spot to place it, such as the toilet seat, or the passenger side of her car.

As well as scrawling love notes in the card Leslie hides it in a new spot every year.
As well as scrawling love notes in the card Leslie hides it in a new spot every year. (9News / Tracy Vo)

With flowers hard to come by this year, Mr Anderson’s gesture is a love language they both share, and they both agree the card bears more meaning than material items.

The long-time lovers marked their 60th wedding anniversary last month, having known what that had from their first random meeting at a racing car meet.

A special note marked the pair's 60th wedding anniversary.
A special note marked the pair’s 60th wedding anniversary. (9News / Tracy Vo)

“From day one, I knew I would be with him for the rest of my life,” says Mrs Anderson.

They have tried to keep up with modern day dating, such as watching Married At First Sight, and have shared some of the secrets to their love, which has proved to last the distance.

“Just keep loving each other. Just keep talking to each other and keep supporting each other.”

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