Well, after over 20 years of Singledom, an era is coming to an end. That’s right: I, Nancy Phaneuf, am getting married on March 3rd. My wild stories about internet dating are being replaced with the ultimate online dating story: the pairing that worked!
I met Jim Manning on eHarmony in October 2015, and our wedding is planned for 30 days from now. Getting married seemed out of reach for me, and finding Jim was no small miracle. We are both aware of how blessed we are to find love at this stage of our lives. Jim, after losing his wonderful wife of 40 years to cancer. And me, having been divorced for over 20 years.
Once you disclose that you met your mate online, other couples willingly share their similar stories. I tried all of the online sites, Jim only tried eHarmony. If you are unfamiliar with eHarmony, it is a website that requires an inordinate amount of introspection in order to complete the seemingly endless online questionnaire. And the questionnaire is only the beginning. EHarmony compared to Jdate, Match, the fish one, etc. is the only site that insists that the searcher (me) answer a myriad of questions before proceeding to the next step. Once the questionnaire is complete, the algorithms nested in the site do their magic and produce a subset of candidates that match up the best. After a few more managed stages of introduction, the site finally allowed us to contact one another directly. Pictures play a large role in catching someone’s eye and that was the case for us too. Jim had a picture where he is leaning against the shoulder of his younger daughter, Brandy. Something in that pose and in his expression captured my interest. For him, it was my photo holding up a Stella Artois challis! We met for a beer at the Getaway in St. Pete for our first date, a place that holds a special place in our hearts. Jim insists that the high alcohol content of the beers the night helped along. And the algorithms worked: we have been dating ever since.
Our courtship included playing golf, boating and beaching, camping, skiing out west, hiking the Grand Canyon and biking from Pittsburgh to DC. We play very well together and share a certain energy and zest for life! Jim lives in Dunedin and we explored that town and the beaches with all of his beach gang. I introduced him to the Tampa crowd and all of our friends are merging into one giant friend group. We love that part. We got engaged on a camping trip at Ft. DeSoto with our friends, the Halfakers, bearing witness to the proposal. Late last year, Jim and his dog Molly, moved to Tampa for the winter season. It has been an adjustment for all 5 of us– Jim, me, Molly and the two cats!
With a few months of playing house under our belts, we know more than ever that our relationship is a fantastic one. The next phase of our lives hold much promise for continued happiness. Most of you already know the benefits of a secure, loving, fun friendship and marriage. I get it now and I am 110% on board – I am all in with Jim.
I plan to continue Nancy Phaneuf Commercial Realty & Development as long as the market is decent. I will be changing my last name to Manning, mostly on personal matters at first. It seems harder to change the name of the business to reflect my marital status, so that will stay the same for now. No longer will I have any internet dating stories for you, though I am certain to have some new married stories to share!
Many thanks for the years of friendships that I was fortunate to cultivate, primarily because I was single. My friends and children were my world for all of these years. I intend to maintain these precious relationships and to add Jim to the mix. He is a great friend and soon to be husband. I look forward to introducing him to you soon. We can raise a glass and cheer, Dilly, Dilly!