SYMPLY SO GOOD: Bill and Annette Sym celebrate their ruby anniversary this weekend...40 years on from their wedding day.
SYMPLY SO GOOD: Bill and Annette Sym celebrate their ruby anniversary this weekend...40 years on from their wedding day. John Mccutcheon

Right recipe for a love still symply great

AFTER three drinks at the Manly-Warringah Leagues Club Christmas party in 1972, a 17-year-old waitress called Annette plucked up the courage to ask out an apprentice chef named Bill.

Fast forward to 2014 and low-fat cooking queen Annette Sym and the love of her life, Bill, are about to celebrate their ruby wedding anniversary.

About 50 family members and friends will help them celebrate 40 years of marriage with lunch at The Factory tomorrow. Annette said her parents had been worried they were too young to marry at 19 but she and Bill knew it was right for them.

"I actually went away overseas before we got married and when I came back, it was like we'd never been apart," she said.

Bill proposed to Annette by letter while she was away in the United Kingdom and had to wait for her acceptance by post.

While Annette has built up a cookbook empire during the past two decades, Bill carved out a career as an executive chef.

In recent years, he has supported her in her business, Symply Too Good To Be true.

"I couldn't do what I do without him," Annette said.

When one of their three daughters married, Annette fittingly gave her a recipe for a happy marriage which she has published in her August newsletter.

The ingredients include unconditional love, humility, kindness, honesty and respect, mixed in internal blessings, stirred well and folded together.

Annette said 40 years of marriage was special but she and Bill appreciated each other every day.

"I think we celebrate every day. He is the love of my life and I'm celebrating all the time how great he is. The key is we enjoy each other's company and we're good together,'' she said.

''There's nothing we wouldn't do to defend each other to the end."


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