You are my dearest friend and my deepest love Benjamin
I had just started at Princeton High School because of some painful complications at the previous school I attended. I was beyond scared to start my first day, let alone I was late walking into class so it was pretty obvious I was new to the place. My first hour was math. I hated math, well probably because I wasn't very good at it. The next few weeks in that math class continued regularly, the typical take notes, do homework and repeat the next day. I noticed a kid who had always wore plaid button ups a few desks back, he had this nerd type of vibe that I got off of him, it was kind of cute, every time I looked back to see what time the clock said on it, he would always look down as if he wasn't staring at the back of my head. I typically got to school early and didn't know too many people so I just went to class early and worked on homework. He walked in maybe five minutes later and made a comment on my boots "nice stripper boots" because they were black, leather and went up to my knees (most people know of them as "riding boots" but he's a boy so what does he know about fashion.) I had become friends with a girl who eventually told him my last name, and soon enough I got a message over facebook. We talked for a while, just the typical "how was your day" and the occasional "whats your favorite... ?"
He invited me over for the first time, his back yard was the golf course, so we took a walk after hours down there. It lasted maybe an hour, I got to know the shy boy from math class a little bit deeper. I got the typical flirt most do, the slight push or fake the tripping. We were almost back up the hill to his apartment, he stopped me on the sidewalk and tried to make conversation, it grew a little bit awkward. Then he blurted out "will you be my girlfriend" he was so stinkin' cute, I hadn't had anyone so crazy about me like that so I said yes.
Yes, I know it went pretty fast. But I knew he was something I couldn't pass up that easily.
We were basically strangers hanging out, but that was okay, I felt like I had known him my whole life.
We spent days on end with each other, growing, and learning about each other.
One month and it marks two years. He has shown me love, compassion and how to truly give your all. He still surprises me with cute little things. We even do the little celebration of the number months, we just did our 23rd month. He got me roses and chocolate, I gave him a card and an edible rose. Just those little things is what keeps our spark alive. The two of us are always busy with new adventures and I cannot wait for the rest of our new adventures.
I have never met someone so caring, compassionate about me, someone who loves the parts of myself that I never could, and for that I am forever grateful for him and I couldn't ask for anyone better to spend the rest of my life with and to venture out into this crazy world.
If I know what love is, it is because of you
Mike and I first knew OF each other long before we started dating. We grew up right now the road from each other. I moved 10 miles north of Mora, off on a back dirt road, when I was 10 years old. About a quarter of a mile north of me is where Mike lived all his life. Even though he was two grades a head of me, we road the same bus to school. We didn't really know each other by name until we were both past the 7th grade (in the High School) and crossed paths via mutual friends and classes. I just always knew Mike as the "bad boy". Let's just say school was not his favorite thing. Over the course of our school years nothing more than short discussions on the bus ride occurred. We totally lost touch for a good three to four years until the summer of 2010.
I was freshly single from a break up with my high school sweetheart and taking the summer to do some soul searching. I was taking my sweet time getting ready to be picked up by some friends for a night at the Casino when my sister barged into my room and said, "did you know that Mikey (nick name from school days - I can't bring myself to call him this anymore now that we are adults) still lives down the road"? I truly didn't know he still lived down there and my sister invited me to go over there with her (she was going to meet up with a guy she liked who was also friends with Mike). I agreed since I was ready about 45 minutes before my road was to show up.
So we walked on over and met with Mike and his two friend Joel and Jeremy (brothers). My sister was there to meet up with Joel. My first thought of the small group of guys was "hmmm - not a bad looking bunch". I didn't have my eye set on anyone at that time. Nothing really happened that night other than some basic conversations until my ride came. Little did I know that I would be seeing more of them. Through the next few weeks, Emily (my sister) continued to go over there to hang out with Joel and would invite me along. At one point Emily gave Mike my cell phone number. He started texting me asking if we could hang out. We started hanging out both at his place and my place (mind you we both still lived at home with our parents). It was interesting to say the least since we were both over the age of 18.
It wasn't until August 11th, 2010, just before I was to move to the metro for college that we decided to make our relationship official. It was hard at first because Mike stayed up in Mora while I was down in Minneapolis. He came over frequently and I went up north every chance I could. Although, it wasn't long before I moved back up to Mora. We moved into our first place together in the winter of 2011 and purchased our first home in the late summer of 2013.
Mike and I had talked through the years about getting married and having kids but it only seemed like an idea until late March of 2015.
One night when we were just hanging out, Mike brought up the topic of marriage.
Mike: "So, I have had a lot of time to think and maybe we should do like you suggested. Have a small wedding or elope".
Me (totally confused): "Oh yeah? Why do you say that and what brought this up"?
Mike: "Well, I have just had so much time to think at work and you're not going anywhere, I'm not going anywhere, you don't want to have kids until marriage so I think we should get married. Not that we need to have kids right NOW, but you know, soon".
Me (even more confused): "I didn't know you wanted kids so badly". Notice I totally missed the marriage part?
Mike: "Well yeah I want more kids before I am 30". Mike has a daughter from a previous relationship and was only 26 at this time but freaking out he was getting close to 30.
Me (at this point I have no idea where this conversation is going): "So you want to get married"?
Me: "So, we are like...engaged"?
Mike (with a smile on his face): "I guess so".
Me: "Wait, what? You are serious"?
So our proposal was not fairy tale style by any means but that's not Mike's style. We had frequently discussed about getting married to be husband and wife - not to spend thousands of dollars putting on a 'show' for others. He would ask me - "Don't you want to wait until we have more money for your dream wedding"? I would always say, "No. Getting married is not about the 'things' we have on our wedding day. It is about us committing to each other as forever partners". He was more than satisfied on that.
We set the date for the wedding for Tuesday August 11th, 2015. Just shy of four months away! It was a crazy time pulling together a wedding on our five year dating anniversary.
We were married in the Lady Slipper Lodge at Gooseberry Falls State Park at 2:30pm in the afternoon. It was a beautiful and perfect day. We didn't have a big or expensive wedding by any means but that was the day I finally got to call him my husband. I wouldn't change a thing about that day.
Love Story - No Other Suitors
a man who pursues a relationship with a particular woman, with a view to marriage.
My love story started when I turned 40. I was serving in a ministry at church and a new guy joined the ministry. All the ladies in the ministry were telling me "Faith did you see the new guy? He is single.". Yeah I saw him and he was totally not my type. A woman in the ministry saw something different. She kept planning dinners and other events for Corey and I to meet that never worked with our schedules. She encouraged me to ask Corey out for coffee and so I did. Corey pretty much said "Talk to the hand.". Over a few years I had a friendship with Corey and I found myself writing him notes (he still has them). Finally it was the State Fair 2009 that we were invited by the woman in our ministry and Corey couldn't go on the day that her and her husband were going. I confronted Corey one Friday night at church and said "You should just go with me whether you are comfortable or not.". So the city girl and the country boy went to the State Fair. We ran hard for 10 hours and haven't stopped talking since. I've gone ice fishing for the first time, drove a snow mobile and have learned so much about country living on 10 acres. During our dating season I sensed in my spirit God saying "There are no other suitors.". What? How could this country boy be perfect for me?
Corey and I had been seeking God's best for our life and we organically found ourselves not wanting to kiss and to wait for marriage for the friendship benefits. It was so weird but has turned out to be so wonderful!
On Valentine's Day 2010, Corey showed up on a Sunday morning at church equipped with a pink plastic ring I'd find out later was purchased when he borrowed a quarter from me at Albertville Mall. He got down on his knee and he said my full name and asked will you marry me? I was so caught off-guard and said "Yes". PLEASE NOTE: We had talked about marriage and I knew the 'real' ring was ordered.
As a single mom for 15 years I had thought I wouldn't ever have the wedding of my dreams, but I got it. I went dress shopping with my maid-of-honor and had all the fun of a bride-to-be. We got married in the chapel at the church where we met around all the people that had watched our relationship grow. We will celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary in July.
My country boy is perfect for me!
Mama Gracie's Staff
Here at Mama Gracie's we have a wonderful group of staff from different walks of life. Each of their journeys contributes to what Mama Gracie's has to offer.