(We both first met in Preschool, and went to the same school all through out until graduating. We lived in a very small town.)
A Lenten service at the 1st United Methodist Church in 8th grade sparked Ben's interest in Maria. When Maria was singing in the choir she smiled at him. Ben took it to mean a little bit more than an average "smile," that became the start of a long crush, if you can consider it to be a crush after five years.
Maria didn't particularly like Ben. She thought he was weird and immature. It wasn't until 10th grade that they became closer friends. They did many things together: Ballroom dancing, Sea Scouts, Christian Retreats, Birthday Parties, and of course Maria's strange gatherings. After graduating Maria went to Lancaster School of Cosmetology and Ben went to Webb Institute. They continued to stay in touch.
Maria moved back to Hallstead to figure out her relationship that was on the rocks. During this dramatic break-up, Ben came to show his support. It was in that time that Ben invited Maria and their friends to come listen to him play the song "Surprise" on the piano at his church. It was definitely a "surprise" when he started to sing. Maria didn't realize he would be singing and it took her off guard. It was then that she realized he wasn't the person she thought he was. Her judgements were false.
A nine page application with an essay to date her and a few months later, they officially began to date. They experienced many adventures and had great fun. After reading many books about marriage and a year and four months later, Ben proposed. It was a surprise 21st birthday present. They celebrated by going to a Jars of Clay concert in New York City.
And after Ben waited 7 years for Maria they chose to get married in an exotic place called Hawaii. Their wedding day was on the beach on a Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 3:30pm.
They are now living in Washington state while Ben pursues his career in Naval Architecture/Marine Engineering at SAFE Boats International. They are expecting their firstborn in June, 2013.