Introducing Brandon & Leah “Life Happens” + Chance to Win $100

brandon and leah music

We love music almost as we love weddings, so it was quite a treat when we were introduced to Brandon & Leah.  Brandon & Leah are a super cute duo who love performing together – seems like a perfect fit for GWS :)

I love that their music is beachy and has such a fun, yet laid back vibe to it. They grew up just a bit north of LA in Malibu and their tunes definitely reflect the spirit of SoCal. Since Brandon & Leah are located not too far from us, we’re hoping to catch a live show soon.

They filmed their newest video “Life Happens” with the help of their close friends at Funk Factory Films, I love that it’s just about them. The home footage in the video shows them seizing the moment and reinforces just how important those small moments happening around you everyday can be! So super sweet. Check it out below:

Download the mp3 here, so you can take it with you:
Download “Life Happens” Now

Check out Brandon & Leah’s Official Facebook Page

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Congrats to our contest winners Amanda + Nate.  

Here’s their winning story selected by Brandon & Leah:

I met Nate because his sister is one of my closest friends. I’m ashamed to admit that I wasn’t interested in him initially because he is a quadriplegic. Since I had never met a guy my age in a wheelchair, I just wasn’t sure how to interact with him.

Soon after meeting Nate, my 24 year old cousin passed away unexpectedly. David had been one of my favorite people, a quirky guy who taught me to value life and find joy in the little things Although Nate and I weren’t close at the time, he was one of the first people I saw after returning from my cousin’s funeral. Nate instinctively knew what I needed and allowed me to talk about the funeral, about my family, and about my cousin.

A few months after losing my cousin, a group of my single friends went on a cruise together. Nate and his sister also came on the cruise. One of my friends had made me promise before going on the cruise that I would consider Nate as a dating possibility because it wasn’t fair to dismiss him due to a disability. Somewhere in between fancy dinners on the ship, bad karaoke on “single mingle” night, and snorkeling on Grand Cayman, I developed a crush on Nate. I had realized that he was fun and interesting and could still do so many things, despite being in a wheelchair. It took some prodding from his sister and some subtle flirting from me, but eventually we became a couple. Almost one year after we started dating, on my 30th birthday, he proposed to me and we started planning our wedding.

I don’t think Nate and I would be together if it weren’t for the unique circumstances in our lives. Nate has developed an inner peace and optimism that anyone who spends even a little amount of time with him can sense. He was injured in a biking accident at seventeen, so he understands how tragedy can alter your life. I feel so blessed to be marrying Nate and I can’t wait to start our life together.

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  1. I walked into the coffee shop he was working at. I had hot pink hair so he decided to chat me up for a little bit. We sat and talked for about 10 minutes and then I left. The next day I got a call from a friend of mine (who worked with him, which I didn’t know!)telling me she gave him my number. He took me to canada to play bingo on our first date, now it’s over 7 years later and we’re planning a wedding!

  2. I met my wife in 7th grade, 1979. I was invited to her 13th birthday party, along with all other classmates. As God is my witness when her brother played “Jailhouse Rock” on their stereo I did my very best Elvis impression-again this is no joke. We began dating that summer (as much as two 13 year olds could date, Bingo, Bowling, going to the local mall, we loved watching ‘Dallas’)! In High School we were voted Class Couple-but we had broken up by the time the Class Couple photo was in the yearbook! We got back together in college and married on August 16, 1996. No one can say we didn’t take our time! For the wedding reception I wore a tailor made jumpsuit as a nod to Elvis, and we handed out scarves with our names embroidered on them as Wedding Favors. We have 3 beautiful children and are living the dream. Still holding hands and still very much in love.

  3. My darling future husband and I met at Summer camp in 4th grade. It all began with a tiny little girl hesitant to play field games simply because she knew there was competitive, not-so-little boy who always ran her over.

    She got over her fear of his competitive spirit, and he got over his fear of girls and they started e-mailing during the school year…Just waiting for that one week of the year they’d get to reunite. That week of camp was always spent together, skipping late night games to go stargazing, and picking wild daisies (my favorite flower of them all!

    She lived in Minnesota, he lived in Wisconsin. But they never let the distance matter, and seized every opportunity to connect. Instant Message and Snail Mail were huge in their developing 7th grade relationship ;)

    Although I told my Mom in 6th grade that I would marry this boy, It wasn’t until my 16th birthday that we established our feelings for one another. Up until this point, we were just best friends. He gave me flowers, and we danced.

    Summers went by, and as we continued to grow up into high-school and college, we started working at this same camp as counselors. This camp is a magical place.
    July 4th, 2009 with fireworks in the sky, Bryan wrapped his arms around me and FINALLY asked if I would be his girlfriend. I said yes.

    Just over two years later, at the same camp that little 4th grade Bryan and Elizabeth met….Bryan gave me one paper crane after another, each with a clue leading us to a memorable spot at the camp. One for our first photo together, the time we first talked, where we started dating..etc.

    The last crane read,
    “The prettiest, most meaningful place for us along Crescent Lake Shores,
    We have all of our talks here,
    with my hand always holding yours”.

    We sat by the water front on a creaky wooden bench and I was asked by the most gracious, calm, loving, adorable man if I would be his wife.

    I said yes :)

  4. I met Jeff a year and a month ago. After my own brother died, I started talking to my friends back in NZ more (I’m originally from Illinois) and my friends decided I needed to meet Jeff and couldn’t believe that I hadn’t met him before. My best friend from college and Jeff’s brother set us up. I came here on vacation for three weeks and met the shyest, sweetest, coolest red-headed man. I left after my vacation not knowing whether things would work out, but six months and about 100 hours of phone conversations later, I moved back to NZ and have been madly in love with my soulmate ever since. Love happens when you least expect it. Neither of us thought we’d find love and we’re so happy to have each other now.

  5. One evening, two summers ago I rode my bike up to the dog park near my house, along with my little dog, Murphy. Murphy immediately fell in love with a sweet brindle dog that seemed to be just as interested in him as he was in her. I asked around until I came upon a (very handsome) man who said the dog belonged to him. We started chatting with the regular dog park banter and before we knew it, it was dark out and we had been talking for 3 hours!! The next time we saw eachother we exchanged numbers and spent the rest of the summer exploring the cities best hiking spots and dog parks and fell in love, hard and fast. He proposed last September while we were backpacking at the peak of the mountain. He is the best thing that has ever happened to me and makes me happier each day I am privledged enough to know him, and call him mine. That summer I would have never anticipated finding someone so dear to me. But, life happens.

  6. Had been travelling with my daughter down in Mexico for just about a year when my family said i “couldn’t be a gypsy for the rest of my life” so i agreed to let them enroll me into university – this was back in 1998. So my daughter and i moved up there, went for a walk to check out this new town, met a girl who was working at the local board shop – she invited me to a potluck at her place. I attended; met Doug, we got along. Next weekend at the universities opening party – we ran into each other again in the line up for the beer garden – this time he asked for my number. :) Next day he called and brought my daughter and i lunch – that was 14 years ago. We now have a son and have built a business together, and figured we are finally ready to start planning a wedding. We are known for doing the whole, life wedding family thing a bit out of order, but we are all about “life happening” – its how we met.

  7. When I was 16, I was one of two girls on my high school surf team. This was 2000 and AOL chat was still very big. So one night I was bumming around on AOL looking at people’s profiles and I typed in 15-18 year old male bodyboarder and waited for profiles to come back of people who were currently on. Steve in Australia popped up and as it was a place I really, really wanted to go to, I messaged him. Over the next two years we chatted as friends talking about bodyboarding, friends, people we were dating, religion, losing a few friends to suicide, really whatever was on our mind at the time. Then I got a serious boyfriend and we lost contact. After a year and a half the boyfriend and I broke up and I really felt like I needed a change in my life. At first I thought I’d do a study abroad program in London, but that was going to be pretty pricey so I started thinking about Aus. It took me forever to dig up Steve’s phone number, but I did fine it, contacted him and we started chatting again. He helped recommend a school to attend here and with the application process. Six months later I was in Australia and he met me my first day to be my tour guide around town. That was 7 years ago as of Feb 10 and we’re getting married in California in September in front of all of our American and Australian friends and family! It’s funny how life happens…

  8. When I was 17 my boyfriend and I met at a coed softball game. I had gone to the game with his bestfriend at the time and was sitting in the bleachers while everyone was arriving. Chris walked up, sat right behind me, then five minutes later he sparked up the conversation. The next day I got a text message from a number that was not familiar, I was unsure who it was since I didn’t remember giving my number out. It ended up being Chris. (come to find out since I never gave him my number he went into his bestfriends phone to get my number lol). We conversed for about a week before hanging out again. We hung out for a good month and half with no intentions of getting together or me even feeling attracted him. After spending every week together for that month and a half, we grew on each other and in October of 2006 we started dating. Down the road I ended up finding out we shared a big group friends an hung out at the same places yet we never met before. It’s funny how “life happens”… ;) … a little over five years later we are engaged, still going strong and more in love everyday.

  9. cain and i meet 22 years ago in aug 21, 1989. we where both 21, i was selling flowers on the corner to help me make it thur college and he was working as a driver for the company. he had picked me up from the corner to return me to my car with all the other sellers. it was love at first sight, we were both lucky for the driver that would have pick me up was watching a basketball game, if there was no game i do not think we would have meet, we have been together ever since, we just got married last october at convict lake 20 miles south of mammoth at are favorite place to be fishing and enjoy the amazing outdoors! love light truth <3

  10. I met a very sweet boy in Chemistry class, first period, junior year of high school. My goofy teacher did the unthinkable and let the computer randomly select seats for the students. This sweet and handsome boy and I were selected to be chemistry partners for the year. That class created a new friendship for us that lasted until graduation. We headed to separate colleges and lost track of each other for a while. A year later we met back up through mutual friends and started a relationship that would lead us into a beautiful life we would share together. We have had many twists and turns and bumps and bruises, but we have battled through it together as best friends would. We look forward to all of the happy moments we will share in life, but are prepared with the others love, when the inevitable rough patches arise. As we plan our lives together we can’t help but to think back to high school nearly ten years ago and thank that computer for selecting us as partners, now it’s for life :)

  11. I was a Freshman in college, making a visit home one weekend for a festival. While I was hanging out with my one of my girl friends on a bench in the center of town, I received a phone call. I didn’t recognize the number, but I always answer. There was a boy on the other end that told me his name was Andre Schwarzer, and he wanted to meet up. I was pretty confused, because I was definite I had never met this guy, let alone given him my number. He told me that I had given it to him the night before, and I had told him we were going to hang out that night. So I started asking him questions about what I look like and where I’m from, in the hopeful attempt to stump him and make him admit that he had never really met me. After each question, I heard snickering in the background, and he answered all my questions correctly! Eventually he hung up on me, but somehow I figured out it was a guy I knew from high school’s soccer teammate. A prank phone call! I called my friend and pretended to chew him out for giving my number out to a stranger. Amidst my girly giggling and pretend fighting, I received a text message from the number that had called me. He apologized if he had upset me and wanted to make sure that he hadn’t offended me. I texted him back, telling him that I was just kidding and it was no big deal. That kid kept texting me all night, all the next day, and all the next week. He would always tell me he had fallen asleep the night before, but really he told me later, that he would ask me a question before he went to bed so that I would answer and he would have a reason to talk to me the next day. It is now three and a half years later and he put a ring on it!! We’re getting married this fall, and we still think about that prank phone call that changed our lives. He still can’t put it into words why he fell in love with me over the phone that night, but he knows it has something to do with the fact that I was willing to play along with him. We are two of the most playful people ever, and there was no better way for us to get to know each other than over that prank phone call that evening in September (:

  12. I met my fiance in my living room… I had just moved into a new apartment with three girls, none of which I knew… I had been set up to live with them by the woman I had been living with (life was “happening” if you will… it was pretty crazy at the time and I ended up not having a place to live at a moments notice, so my mentor (who is also a Pastor and married to one of the Senior Pastors at my church)) said I could live with them until I found a place. We were searching craigslist, nearby college websites and the like for people who were looking for a roommate, but to no avail. Finally Christmas time came, I went home for Christmas Eve and Christmas day and came back to their house a few days after that, and my mentor said “I THINK I FOUND A PLACE FOR YOU TO LIVE!” She had spoken to a woman at the Christmas Eve service at our church and asked her if she knew anyone looking for a roommate… the woman said no, and was about to go on her way, when she realized that THEY would actually be needing a roommate very soon! (but not until April) Tana said, well, you guys should at least meet and see if you like eachother/get along. So she set up a time for us to meet… I drove over after a long closing shift at Starbucks to meet them, and when I left I got a text saying “WE LOVE YOU! MOVE IN NOW!” So, I moved in on January 1st… I became VERY good friends with Jen, and one night as I got home from work, her brother had come over to make her dinner and was still there when I got back… they were sitting in the living room, we talked about how he was going off to Basic Training for the Army in a few weeks, and saw eachother again one night when he had come over to hang out with his sister again (he said he waited and waited and waited and tried to prolong leaving because he knew I would be home very soon ;) cutie!)… the time came and went from him to leave for Oklahoma to boot camp, we had only spoken on those two occasions, but apparently, unbeknownst to me – he had seen me and wanted to meet me way back in the beginning of December at church, and the night I came in and met him as “his sisters new roommate” he was blown away that he finally had the chance to meet me. Well, his Basic Training graduation came and I had become good friends with his whole family (heard lots about him, but still didn’t really know him because he was away), and sent him a graduation gift of the devotion “Streams In the Desert” and a little encouraging note to make him smile (you could say I had a little crush… didn’t know it was reciprocated though!)… his sister had also put a bug in his ear saying he should talk to me, without knowing I had a little crush, and he was AMAZED to hear she would not be wierded out if he did! So, after getting the present on April 8, 2011 for his graduation, he wanted to call me, because I was having a bad night and had been texting with his sister who was in Oklahoma for his graduation, but I said no… he texted me to “put a smile on my face, and say thanks” and then called me the next morning to thank me again. From that day on we spent countless hours on the phone, writing eachother letters (yes, real, old-fashioned letters) getting to know eachother, and when he came home on May 21, he asked me to be his girlfriend… I of course said yes… :) It was fabulous :)

  13. My boy and I met when I was newly 18 and he was 20. I thought he was gorgeous and he thought I was terrifying, but don’t all good romances have some fear in them? Unbeknownst to me, my best friend had been secretly in love with him for 3 years. Well, I should have known, but whenever she talked about her “crush” I always just pretended to know who she was talking about. When it finally came out that he was her obsession, I tried to steer clear. But sometimes God laughs at our efforts to undermine him.
    He started playing music with my brother and coming around all the time. He showed up at my job and at my school and I couldn’t avoid him anymore. I didn’t WANT to avoid him anymore. We would talk on the phone and skype for hours and on the nights when my insomnia would keep me up, he would lullabye me with his guitar over Video Chat.
    When it finally came out that we were going to be together, not everyone was over joyed with us. My best friend distanced herself, my mom didn’t trust him and his dad didn’t trust me. We’ve been together for almost 3 years now and are still working on these things.
    But we’re getting married in 9 months. We’re now greeting card writing, musical, snarky hipsters who have our own way of being cute. Two poor kids who just want to be able to be together.

    And that’s the best adventure I can imagine.

  14. “I didn’t catch your name?” That is how it all began, well sort of.

    Laura: In late August 2006 I was waiting in a twisting long line outside Frasier hall on Western Washington University’s campus. All nerves and anticipation as I waited to take my math placement test my freshman year of college. Or perhaps the fact that it was my first real experience on a college campus as a college freshman was the true instigator of the butterflies fluttering in my stomach. I began a conversation with the girl in front of me to fill the awkward anxiety settling in. We chatted for a few minutes before realizing we were from the same hometown but went to different schools all our lives. “South Kitsap High School?” Our conversation came to a halt and we both glanced over our shoulders at a tall, slender and dashingly handsome guy who had obviously been eaves dropping, “I have a jersey that I picked up at a Goodwill in Idaho that is from South Kitsap!” Now three of us continued our chatter while the line filter into different testing rooms. We shuffled into a medium sized classroom with old flip-top writing desks. The tests were handed out and the anxiety recommenced.

    Mitch: I tried to focus my attention on the task at hand, filling out the top of the bubble sheet with my first and last name but I had little opportunity as I tried to discreetly glance over the shoulder of the sweet girl I had been talking to earlier for just a peek at her bubbled in name. Was that a L or a M…. hmmm to hard to tell with the letters so close together, what was her name? Wonderful I thought, “The first and only person I’ve meet at Western and I’ve already forgotten her name. This does not boad well for my college social life.” The test began and it became increasingly hard to try and decipher the bubble letters of her name without looking like a complete cheater. Soon only half way done with the test it quickly became my goal to finish the test at the same time as her so we could walk out together. But my seemingly brilliant idea vanished when suddenly she stood up, walked past with a slight glance, handed off her test to the instructor, and left the room. Still on question 20 of 40 quickly I had a decision to make, finish the test and potentially never see her again or take my chances on the remaining questions and see if I could catch her. This was a no brainer, I wildly bubbled in letters, and out the doors I ran, which way did she go?

    Laura: Walking briskly from the building I was glad to be through but my mind did not allow comfort but rather a constant bicker and banter of what that last math problem could have meant. I retrieved my cell phone from my bag and checked for missed calls. My dad, mom and sister had planned to meet up after the test; I would find them at the bookstore. I picked up the pace as I darted passed the library until suddenly I felt a hand grace my lower back. I jumped as the unexpected visitor came into view. “Sorry, I didn’t catch your name?” He said, smiling brilliantly. “Oh, haha, I’m a Laura.” I shyly replied “I’m Mitch.” We exchanged smiles as we together headed across the sidewalk and straight into my parents. Lucky me ☺
    As SummerStart, WWU’s weekend long freshman orientation, commenced we saw a spattering of each other: in line to pick up our freshly printed IDs, during games and icebreaker activities, hanging out with new acquaintances. But it wasn’t until the following month that fate really stepped into our relationship.

    Mitch: Being an out of state student I arrived to school the Friday before the typical move-in day in order to get settled early. My dorm was great, set back in a little forest of trees just outside the south end of campus. The trek into campus would be just that, a trek, but well worth it. My mom and I walked along the forth floor of stack 8, reading the door decorations of the future students I would call my floormates and close friends Kayla and Danielle, hmmm they sound nice, Susanna and Laura, really!? Laura, that is a fairly common name but I wonder if it might be her…. I continued down the hall reading the names and wondering and wishing.

    Laura: After settling into my new room and meeting my new roommate I entered into a lounge full of new people: our first Stack 8 meeting with our RA. I swept the room for a familiar face; just maybe I would be lucky enough to recognize someone. Then suddenly my stomach jumped I made eye contact with him. “Stack 8?” He mouthed from across the room. “Yes” I smiled and nodded. “Floor four?” I motioned back holding up four fingers. He pointed at his chest and made a piece sign, “Me, too!” both our eyes lit up!

    Serendipitous? Luck? Fate? Call it what you like, that is how it was and still is for us. From that moment on we seemed to be attached at the hip, adventuring around our new home, Bellingham WA, meeting a fantastic group of friends, getting to know each other started as a wonderful whirlwind of a friendship. Five months later we decided to take a new leap in our deeply-rooted friendship. Five years later we are engaged, still in a whirlwind, still getting to know one another, and falling deeper in love day by day. We remind each other daily of how lucky we both are. “Home is wherever I’m with you.”–Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros. We have both been lucky enough to find our home in each other.

  15. I met Rune the very first day of high school, in our AC English class. He was sitting next to his friend and my long-time crush Louis, and I promptly ignored him so that I could creepily moon over Louis, who sort of had a mullet. Rune and I eventually ended up in the same group of friends and intermittently had crushes on each other, none of which we admitted to at the time, and they never overlapped. There’s a message in my freshman yearbook from his then-girlfriend (who, coincidentally, I disliked), thanking me for coming around to their relationship.

    Both friendship and awkward crushes fizzled out until we met up again the first day of our junior year, in AP History. I had snagged a prime seat by the window and he sat behind me. We became quite good friends, our inside jokes thrived, and, for his birthday, I bought him a pack of ankle socks because he only wore really ugly tube socks that peeked out under his too-short navy blue Dockers. Finally, after months of awkward teenage romantic tension, he mustered up the nerve to kiss me the night before our AP History exam during a study session.

    Perhaps it was a ploy to leech off me for all future group projects, but it worked and it’s been a whirlwind 6 years since then – I single-handedly salvaged his History and Government grades, he impulsively broke up with me because I made him watch Top Model, we ran a lucrative snow-shoveling racket during a Valentine’s Day blizzard, I made hundreds of assorted holiday cookies with his mom, he joined the army, oh, and we just got married! I am so grateful for all of the coincidences, fights, tears, poop jokes, and shenanigans that have brought us together as we are today.

  16. I met my now fiance in South Korea. We had both just graduated from college and were spending a year there on a Fulbright Scholarship. I thought he was cute and looked interesting, so I singled him out of the group and started a conversation. Turned out he was going to try and get his hair cut that evening, so I offered to take him. I had lived in Korea as a kid (and am half Korean, half Polish) and thought that I could still remember a few words. At the barber salon, instead of instructing them to give him a hair cut, I apparently told them to chop off his head. That was our first date. We ended the night watching Blade Runner on his bunk bed and tentatively holding each others’ sweating hands. We then were placed in the exact same small town in the Southern coast of Korea by chance, and spent the rest of the year dating. He met my Korean family, took me on a trip to Thailand, and eventually ended up speaking (and cooking!) better Korean than me. Fast forward five and a half years later, and he’s now my partner, my fiance, my lumberjack. I can’t wait to marry him.

  17. My fiance and I met on a a tropical island in the caribbean four years ago today. No, really!! I was doing an archaeology internship for school on the Virgin Island of St. John and he was visiting the island because HE was an archaeology intern for the same organization 8 years earlier and had been electronically overpaid on his stipend. His excuse for visiting was to repay his karmic debt by making a donation to the archaeology site for the difference between what he was paid and what he was SUPPOSED to have been paid. When he walked into our lab to make his donation, the archaeology foreman (a government employee) pointed Eric in my direction and asked me to take the donation. I’ll never forget that moment that we shook hands……4 years later, 2.5 years of long distance, two moves across the country, many cookies and kisses, we just got engaged and I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with him. Neither of us planned to meet our life partner at that moment, but we just went with it and all the beautiful challenges and life changes that it brought. Many details of our wedding have yet to be decided…but we know where we’ll be honeymooning!

  18. Some say junior year is the most important year of your high school career. I’d have to agree, albeit my reasons aren’t academic. I had “known” him since freshman year, but we really didn’t pay much attention to each other. Somehow, our junior year, we ended up in the same circle of friends. It was winter break and his house had this gnarly slope where we could snowboard and sled down. Naturally, everyone gathered and that was the beginning of our friendship. Over the course of two months I began coming online only to talk to him. Somehow finding what classes we both had and “accidentally” being there in the same general area. We were lost in each other and eventually that got the best of me, because of my conservative family. They caught us talking on the phone and from that day it’s just been a constant secret from my family and a whole lot of drama. I didn’t expect him to stick around, especially with all the baggage that comes with parents that hate your boyfriend. Somehow, he stuck around. Through all the times I pushed him away because it felt too good to be true, he was beside me. He was with me after school after a night where my parents yelled and argued with me. To this day, I am with him. Everyday I am lost more and more inside him, but I’ve really found myself. In the end we’ve both realized that this life is short and it doesn’t matter if someone doesn’t accept our relationship. We have the best fucking time when we’re with each other. From concerts and music festivals to trekking through forest preserves and literally just laying down in the trunk of our cars and staring up at clouds… Life happens with him.

  19. I met Zishan when I was a freshman in high school at a mother’s day brunch function. We exchanged numbers and became friends quite easily. We eventually developed feelings for each other but didn’t want to ruin anything by moving too fast so we just enjoyed each other’s company and left the labels out of it. After a year and a half of knowing each other, Zishan got into a bad motorcycle accident and underwent a major surgery. After thinking we had made it through the toughest part, when he didn’t recover completely, more tests were done only to find out he had a rare bone cancer. As hard as it was seeing him go through treatment, working through it together really showed each other how invested we were in our relationship. I am happy to say his treatment was successful. We are now both finishing up our bachelor’s degrees, sadly making us a long-distance couple who survives off old-fashioned snail-mail love letters and holidays from classes. We haven’t let any of our struggles along the way come in the way of what we have and I am looking forward to the day I can officially call him my husband.

  20. For Ben and I, we assumed that “life was happening” so much for the two of us that we were hopeless in the dating world. We just went about our daily happenings as nonchalant single people but inside we both longed for a soul mate. Thankfully for the two of us we both have very sincere and very determined(cough *pushy* cough) friends that talk us into online dating. We both eventually caved in and logged on. After a few short months and a couple of awkward dates later I personally decided to wave the white flag on dating and go back to my normally daily single lady life happenings. These activities involved Monday night trivia, Wednesday night open mic night and Friday night Karaoke (can you see that attempted to keep my single self busy). On a rather snowy evening in Maryland one of my staying busy/not focusing on being single events had been cancelled due to weather so I kept myself busy with a phone call to a close friend. Sean (another online dater) and I talked over the cruel reality of the dating world and I then and there decided that I would raise the white flag and delete my account the following day. Like the infamous Yes lyrics, it was much better to be the owner of a lonely heart than the owner of a broken one. Up early the following morning to shovel my walk way I procrastinated on bearing the cold and logged into my account one last time. There it was, his message, his letter to me! The words that would change my life forever. Ben was up early heading out for a guys snowboarding trip and came across my profile. According to him after a few moments of hesitation passed and he put his insomnia to use by messaging me. This was not the typical online message I received in the past. The words were not “hey you’re cute; let’s get to know each other”. This was a true letter, a true interest in my interests and a true this is who I am, “would you like to get to know me”. I spent the following day re reading his message, gushing over his sentences. I took my time and replied back. The white flag would have to wait and a first date was a must! Seeing that Ben was on a snowboarding trip with the fellas and I was visiting a girlfriend for a winter beach trip we exchanged a few short messages and then got down to business…with the ultimate let get to know each other challenge. We exchanged our Words with Friends user names! Scrabble was a perfect opportunity to break the ice and show our playful/nerdy/competitive sides. After we both had a wonderful weekend with friends and the excitement of a first date circling our head, we made plans to meet the following week. Dinner and drinks a two favorite local spots were arranged. Our first date arrived and as corny as the two of us thought this stuff was before, it was love at first sight! I was on a date with my best friend! There was no comparison for any first date before that night, the conversation flowed, the smiles were large, the beer was delicious and the feeling of this is it was oh so present. Looking back on it now, life really was not happening for Ben and I until that very life happening night. On September 1st Ben and I will make our life commitment and I cannot wait for our life happenings together as husband and wife. – Amanda

  21. I met Nate because his sister is one of my closest friends. I’m ashamed to admit that I wasn’t interested in him initially because he is a quadriplegic. Since I had never met a guy my age in a wheelchair, I just wasn’t sure how to interact with him.

    Soon after meeting Nate, my 24 year old cousin passed away unexpectedly. David had been one of my favorite people, a quirky guy who taught me to value life and find joy in the little things Although Nate and I weren’t close at the time, he was one of the first people I saw after returning from my cousin’s funeral. Nate instinctively knew what I needed and allowed me to talk about the funeral, about my family, and about my cousin.

    A few months after losing my cousin, a group of my single friends went on a cruise together. Nate and his sister also came on the cruise. One of my friends had made me promise before going on the cruise that I would consider Nate as a dating possibility because it wasn’t fair to dismiss him due to a disability. Somewhere in between fancy dinners on the ship, bad karaoke on “single mingle” night, and snorkeling on Grand Cayman, I developed a crush on Nate. I had realized that he was fun and interesting and could still do so many things, despite being in a wheelchair. It took some prodding from his sister and some subtle flirting from me, but eventually we became a couple. Almost one year after we started dating, on my 30th birthday, he proposed to me and we started planning our wedding.

    I don’t think Nate and I would be together if it weren’t for the unique circumstances in our lives. Nate has developed an inner peace and optimism that anyone who spends even a little amount of time with him can sense. He was injured in a biking accident at seventeen, so he understands how tragedy can alter your life. I feel so blessed to be marrying Nate and I can’t wait to start our life together.

  22. I met my soul mate on the one and only full harvest moon of the year. There was sooo many factors going against us meeting… We were both going to meet up with this girl one night, and both totally didn’t want to meet up with her. The way I knew her is that she’s my evil ex girlfriend. And the way that he met her is that she randomly went to his house once to check out a room to rent. Needless to say, the forces of nature brought us together, and we haven’t parted since :) I love him SO much!!!

  23. My fiance and I met our sophomore year of high school. He has always said that he first fell in love with me while watching my long blonde ponytail bounce around during gym class.
    We dated two years in high school and then went off to separate colleges and made the long distance thing work when no one said it could. We went to graduate schools apart as well and now he works in California and I live in Missouri. We are planning a wedding for September 1st, nine years after he asked me to be his girlfriend while leaning on his green Accord in my driveway. I have never loved anyone the way I love him and he has made me the person I am today.

  24. I was sitting in my high school math class when he tapped me on the shoulder, asking if he could copy my homework. His boldness was refreshing, and we hit it off. We dated for a few months and then went off to different colleges. After graduation we started dating again, and ironically he was working on his math PhD. We’ve been together 3 years now and I can’t imagine my life without him.

  25. I met my husband at the end of our junior year of high school in 1997. I had told myself, “No more guys! It’s gonna be my senior year soon and I am single!” Yeah right! After a couple of weeks of making this statement, I met the love of my life. He played Varsity Baseball and I was a Varsity Cheerleader that had to cheer at his games. We locked eyes and fell hard for each other instantly. It was lust at first sight!! ;) Our friends would tease us about our stares and our non verbal flirting. We had a mutual friend that gave him my phone number. According to guy code; A guy shouldn’t call a girl until 3 days after getting her number. I gave my number to our friend at 3pm. Their baseball practice was over at 5:30pm. My husband called me at 6pm!!!! He broke the code!! We talked for a couple of weeks until one day he asked me to be his girlfriend. That was May 16, 1997. We both knew at age 17 that we were gonna be together and get married one day. There was no doubt about it, we just knew. We married on May 18, 2002 and have been together ever since. We have two beautiful boys, Anthony is 4 and Michael is 1. We’ve had many ups and downs but have survived through it all. I wouldn’t change anything that we have gone through because it has only made us stronger and happier than ever. God is good and has blessed us tremendously. I love my husband so much! He is my best friend and the best father in the world!! Love you Anthony!!!

  26. My wife and I met 8 years ago through college friends. As we began a relationship, we embarked on a mission of completing “Letter Dates”- an extravaganza of alphabet excitement. We each took turns choosing a letter at random and planing a surprise date around it. Instead of just going to dinner or the movies, these dates provided fun ways to get to know each other through experiences that were new to us both. J= Jet skiing, T= Tubing down a river, P= Polar bear plunge on New Years Day. It was so fun to try to guess what the other was planning (did ‘H’ stand for horseback riding? a hay ride? Hawaii?) We had an amazing time falling in love through letters dates. Six months ago, we made a scrap book of all our adventures to display at our wedding. <3

  27. We met at a mutual friends party after a football game in college. As part of a really elaborate prank, he shaved his head into a mohawk. I saw him at the party and told him how awesome and cute his mohawk was. We became pretty good friends after that, but it wasn’t until a few years later that we started dating. These days, his mohawk is gone, but he is still really damn cute.

  28. Being a single girl who photographs weddings was an interesting experience. I capture people on their most joyous day and see the love pour over everyone even though I hadn’t fully experienced it. At the same time, I’d have drunk groomsmen trying to hit on me with their slurred picked up lines or grab my camera to take a photo of myself. They thought they were so sly. It was an interesting combination of seeing my couples so happy and wanting what they had, but also leaving thinking the men were nothing like what I wanted.

    Then I saw Michael. I was photographing a May wedding in a dimly lit church. The couple was incredible. Their friends were amazing. Michael was playing guitar for the Sigur Ros song that the bride would walk down the aisle to. They were practicing early on in the day while I was capturing the story that would unfold before the ceremony. I somehow gathered my shy self to go up and tell him how great they sounded. I walked over, spit out the words and he didn’t even look at me. The drummer did, however, and gave me a flirty smile. Plan failed. The rest of the wedding was an incredible event of built up joy and excitement for the couple, but I was too scared to point my camera to the table where Michael was sitting. He didn’t have a date and he left early. I thought about how nice it would be to date such an attractive man.

    Two months passed and the wedding was blogged. I got an e-mail from Michael. (I knew exactly who he was because I’d already creeped on his facebook). Then I got a phonecall. Michael is in an amazing band here in Seattle (Pickwick) and wanted some promotional photos. “Do you take band photos?”, he asked. I said “yes, absolutely” as I shook my head. We planned to meet a week later and I had never been so nervous, the day came and I couldn’t eat anything as I prayed that the piano player who would join us to discuss photo ideas would somehow not be able to come. My prayers didn’t work since he came with Michael anyway.

    Both Michael and their keyboardist showed up to the bar and after the keyboardist left 10 minutes into the meeting, Michael asked if I’d like another drink. We stayed and talked until 2am. A year and a half later, he asked me to marry him.

    No more drunk groomsmen. :)

  29. My fiance and I met on a cruise ship in the Cayman Islands. Our 2 separate groups were placed at the same dinner table every night. We hit it off from the beginning. Both of us had planned on some chill time with our friends, but fate had other plans. I thought we’d never see each other again! We’re getting married August 2012 in Charleston SC!

  30. You know how people get a bit embarrassed to admit that they met someone “online”? Well, Mike and I aren’t shy to happily announce that WE MET ON FACEBOOK! We even have a tiny pack of gum on top of our desk that we bought from the local candy shoppe that says it on there and has a cute picture of otters (though we pretend they’re ferrets because we have two of those rascals). And no, we didn’t meet in *that* way where you scroll through all of your friends of friend’s pages desperately looking for a hottie…. Well, kind of….. But not as creepy! I swear!

    I’m a photographer and have a Facebook fan page. I had recently posted some pictures of my friend Megan, and I saw that someone I didn’t know had “liked” the photos, and has also “liked” my fan page (okay, I’ll admit, I’m not a very popular photographer and I only had about 190 fans at the time so I EASILY noticed every time I made a new fan)….

    So I was like “who is THIS guy?” and did the casual Facebook stalking of his page, but he had made it private. I wasn’t going to just give up, this guy was way too cute! AND, his profile picture was a photo of him taking photos while wearing a Muse t-shirt! *Swoon*

    So I poked him. I poked the crap out of him! When I try to explain this to my parents or anyone who is “too cool” for Facebook, they gasp at me because they don’t realized what poking is on Facebook. It’s basically a little notification that gets sent to the other person saying “Hey, so-and-so poked you. WHAT’S YOUR NEXT MOVE?!”. Okay, it doesn’t say all of that to you, but that’s how Mike took it. He was at work when I poked him and he turned to his co-worker and was like “What do I do?! She just poked me!”.

    So he sent me a friend request and I gladly accepted although I knew nothing about this guy, I could tell in his photo he wasn’t a puppy kicker or steals-candy-from-babies type of guy. Then I left a comment saying “Hi hi hi hi hi hi hi :)” and we started chatting and set up a date at the local Science Museum.

    I show up and don’t see him outside, so I start freaking out thinking “oh my gosh, this guy is TOTALLY a steals-candy-from-babies and ditches-internet-girls type of guy! UGH!”. Just then I see him and he had already gone inside and bought our admittance wrist bands. When he tried to put it on my wrist, he couldn’t stop shaking and it took him about a minute. It was so cute.

    We finally stopped being so nervous after a while and got to talking. I had to leave for work after a couple hours and we went outside and breakdanced in the parking lot. I mean, any guy who is willing to make a fool of himself on the first date is a keeper…… and he definitely was and still is a keeper. We celebrated our one year anniversary last week and I can’t wait til we’re 80 and still having breakdance competitions at the nursing home :)

  31. II had just moved to California the prior year from Michigan and was just finally starting to feel more at home. I was living in a house with two other girls, adjusting to my new life, and having fun. Attached to our house were three apartments. Little did I know that my landlord owned a couple of Italian restaurants in the area and he would be bringing several people over from Italy to work for him and have them reside in the apartments behind the house I was living in. I love learning about other cultures, so when the guys and girls started arriving from Italy, I immediately started friendships with them. About six months later, I noticed a new guy hanging out with them, he kept staring at me, I didn’t think much of it and continued with my evening. A few days later, I was driving home from work and noticed a note on my car, I found myself driving a little faster so I could see what it said. When I got home, I looked at the note and it read “have a nice day – from Italy.” I thought “hmmm that was nice, it must have been one of the Italian guys I am friends with that lives behind me.” As the night went on, I was outside taking my laundry to the laundry room and saw a bunch of the Italian guys out in the driveway. I asked, did someone write me a note? Nobody responded. I was about to walk back into my house and all of a sudden I heard “Brandy.” I looked to see who it was and it was that guy I had seeing stare at me several nights before. I thought to myself, “how does he know my name?” I went over to talk to him, he introduced himself and we tried having a converation (barely new English). One thing he did know how to say however, was “Do you have a boyfriend.” my answer was no, and from that moment on we have been together an have been married almost three years. This girl from Michigan and guy who had just moved here from Italy could barely converse in the beginning because of the language barrier, but I guess love doesn’t need words, just feelings.

  32. In 1997, Preston and I met at summer camp on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. We played lots of ultimate frisbee together and had many mutual friends. It wasn’t until 4 years later, at 16, that we started dating…. and never stopped.

    We were engaged this past August during our little 10th anniversary trip to Aruba. We’ll be married in early June, surrounded by many of our lifelong friends and our amazing families! I couldn’t be more excited about this party! ;)

  33. I’m peruvian, but studied college in Argentina. One day I decided to change my life sold my beautiful tools of trade { camera+ Mac} and bought a ticket to the remote island of Hawaii. Arrived with no job or Housing neither much money! but with a heart hungry for living life to the fullest!. After two months I met a man who change my destiny,I was hitchiking to a remote beautiful beach where many people play drums circle and have a beautiful sunday sunset. within 1 finger that i put my finger up ( it usually takes forever to get a ride) a very retro mercedes stop. Without looking at me but just making sure to clean the front part of the car so I can get in There he was, Matthew. I have to admit I was looking at him first neither before getting in the car, but i was looking at the avocado on top of the hand break, I Love avocados and i happen to have a lime in my purse! hahah, yeah weir people.. the first thought came to my mind was…I just need salt and we can make a salad! He happened to go to the same beach. Since that day we never got separated againg in two weeks he proposed, and 10 days later we were married. 2009 was the year and happily ever after ever since; Still crazy for each other like the first day. Yes I believe in LOVE.

  34. Thanks, this is an amazing post! I love the music, it is a beautiful post and thanks for giving us the chances to download the music <3

    Much Love


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