Marie and Matt

matt-and-marie-avalanche-lake

How We Met

Bride: Matt and I met at the least awkward time in a persons life, 7th grade. It was an era of braces and “like liking” someone so this story is super romantic obviously. We come from the west side of Cincinnati which means there is a Catholic grade school about every other block. Through my select soccer team I became best friends with a girl who went to Matt’s school. She took me to the local swim club one summer day to meet all of the other kids from her school. I remember being super nervous to be the new girl. She took me up to the top deck where the group hung out and that is when I first saw him. I right away could tell that he was the funny one of the group and he made me laugh a lot. We spent the summer together as friends going to festivals, glow bowl, and any horrible movie that came out at the time. Luckily for present day us, Matt was to shy to make a move and I was clueless that he even had a crush on me. (I was later told that he definitely did).

Time went by and the group of friends started to loose touch going into high school. I remember on one amazing fall day the boys high school had a big football game. All of the girls would go and sit together cheering on the team. Right when the game was getting ready to start I spotted Matt walking by in the gigantic crowd. We met eyes (swoon) and I immediately smiled and waved. He texted me later that night and he quickly became the best friend I have ever had.

We started dating that winter 7 years ago and the rest is history.

Groom:13 years old. All I was thinking about was video games, riding my bike, and going to the local swim club with my grade school pals. While all of them we’re going through their “so-called” girlfriends for a week, I just wanted to get on xbox and go swimming. However, one day at the swim club a girl from my grade school, brought my now fiance with her and I first met Marie. She was pretty cool. She liked my dumb 13 year old jokes. As the summer went on we got closer and I actually started having 13 year old feelings for her. The only downside, was that she always had a boyfriend and my per-pubescent 80 lb body was not too intimidating to win in a fight to the death for her.. So I waited. and waited. and waited. Eventually as we entered high school we drifted apart.

3 years later, I saw Marie at a high school football game which was super weird for me. Firstly, I care very little about football. Soccer is my sport and I rarely went to our high school football games. Secondly, this game was one of the biggest games in the school’s history because it was being televised on ESPN, and there were a record number of people at the game, and I happened to spot Marie in the pools of people in the stands while squeezing through the crowds of fans on ground level. Thirdly, even though I spotted her, she was the first one to wave which means she somehow saw my, now 110 lb toothpick body, in the mass of people.

So after the game I couldn’t find Marie and we went home to my friend’s house, and this interaction gave me the courage to pull out my revolutionary Razor flip phone and text her. She replied, and we started going on hikes and kicking soccer and even played on the same indoor soccer team. We started dating in December that year and have been together now for almost 7 years, adventuring, hiking, camping, and still playing soccer here and there.

How He Asked

Matt and I share many interests and hobbies, but collectively our favorite is to hike mountains and camp under the stars. A goal of ours is to visit every National Park, and last year we hit the Pacific Northwest and camped along the coast of Washington and Oregon. So this year we set out to adventure Glacier NP, Yellowstone, and the Grand Tetons.

glacier-national-park

On our third day in Glacier, Matt was persistent on waking up early to see the sunrise on the mountains at Avalanche Lake. We woke up at 5:00am and began our hike into the darkness. As we hiked, the sun was beginning to rise and we could start to see the beautiful gorge and waterfalls off to the side of the trail. While I wanted to stop and enjoy the scenery, he continued to say we needed to catch the sunrise. About .5 miles out from the lake, we were hiking under some tall pines and noticed pine cones falling on our heads. We looked up and saw the local ground squirrels in the trees dropping these on us. As we laughed and dodged the projectiles we eventually came out to a beautiful open lake with the mountain peaks in the hazed background as the sun perfectly hit them.

hidden-lake

Matt is a freelance videographer, and on all of our trips he is always playing with his new toys to capture video. Throughout the trip he was consistently directing me to get in frame to get the perfect shot.  Once we approached Avalanche Lake, he told me to go stand up by the shore and look out to the mountains. He was very persistent that I did not turn around because he was going to try some “new technique” for this shot. Little did I know, he was preparing the ring and making sure he hit record on the camera. After a minute or so of waiting, Matt approached me with a look on his face that I have never seen before. While usually goofy and relaxed, he seemed super nervous about something. Before I knew it he was down on one knee asking me to marry him.

the-proposal

I was shocked and immediately said yes! The rest of the trip was a whirlwind of happiness and fun. Avalanche Lake will always hold a special place in our hearts.

rang

Our Video

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Special Thanks

Matt Stalf
Freelance Videographer