After 15 years together, Penny Lancaster and Rod Stewart are stronger than ever. "Our honeymoon period seems to have lasted forever," Penny recently revealed in a new interview with the Mirror. "We still have a connection like we just met."
Penny, 44, and Rod, 70, started dating in 1999, and tied the knot in Portofino on 16 June 2007. They have two sons together, Alastair, nine, and four-year-old Aiden. Asked for the secret behind their successful relationship, the model replied: "I try and split my time between my eldest child Rod – and my other two boys.
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"Most men are needy, especially when you have been in a long relationship before children arrive, and then children do take up a big part of your time and men feel left out a bit. So I make a conscious effort to dedicate time – the two of us going for dinner, or having breakfast. Just a moment among the madness, he still needs attention."
She added: "It's that checking in with each other. You check in with the kids, have they had their dinner, gone to bed at the right time, done homework? But you need to check in with each other as well."
Penny said that thoughtful gestures go a long way in the Stewart-Lancaster household. Recalling a recent instance when Rod was stuck in a traffic jam, Penny said she kept his spirits up by telling him she would run him a bath, and pour him a glass of wine, "so he felt someone was thinking of home on the way home".
The TV star added: "If he knows I have just finished Loose Women he'll put a phone call in to ask, 'How did it go?'
"He asks if I want a cup of tea. He might pick something up for me. Maybe candles for the bathroom if that's what I wanted. All those little efforts. Rod is traditional in the areas that I like. He's a gentleman, opening doors and pulling out chairs. Being respectful to women. I like the old-fashioned values."
Rod might be a traditional gentleman – but he's also in touch with his feminine side. Penny revealed that the couple enjoy a bit of mutual pampering.
"We have facials together," the star admitted. "He's a man's man but has a feminine side. He's a man who makes an effort."
Penny and Rod famously met at a concert in 1998, when she was dared to ask for his autograph. Once they started dating, the couple decided to take things slowly, with Rod lived mainly in LA, while Penny was studying photography at Barking College. She believes that start gave them their strong foundation.
The couple have made a pact never to spend more than ten days apart from each other, and earlier this year, the whole family travelled with Rod on tour in Australia. Penny says still loves going to Rod's shows. "There's daddy you see at home and there's the Rod Stewart, on tour," she told the newspaper.
"He goes into character, his shows are never the same. It does renew a spark." But she added: "Some of our nicest moments are when we do nothing together."