Our Story

Today is our 10 year wedding anniversary! So what better time is there to write about how our journey got started?

Pinterest Icon Expand ImageOur Story

Tommy Hilfiger Jacket | Tommy Hilfiger Pants| MAXSTUDIO Jumpsuit
In August of 2006 my life changed FOREVER!

The Introduction

It all started when I went to a friend’s band’s concert and happened to run into someone I had a college class with (hi, Jared). He happened to be hanging out with his bestie, David - my hubby, so he introduced us. We chatted for a few minutes and he told me about their awesome band and that I should check them out. We then all went our separate ways for the night.

When I got home that night I sent a message to their band’s MySpace page (I can’t believe that page still exists!) because that was how the cool kids did things back then. David is the one who replied back and we just started chatting back and forth for a few months. He invited me to several local shows that he was the bassist for (can you believe he’s played bass in 17 bands!?) and every time I made up some excuse as to why I couldn’t go.

After about 3 months of persistence I finally agreed to go to one of his shows, alone, in Tampa, which is about a 3 hour drive. You’re probably thinking: “This girl is dumb.”1, but before you get all judgy on me let me just say that it turned out a friend I went to highschool with happened to be friends with him since kindergarten aaaannndd her mom gave the approval of him to my mom so you can get rid of that judgy face now 😋.

The First Date

The day came and we talked most of the way there and listened to some wholesome Dane Cook comedy when we had run out of things to say. I had gone in with low expectations, and I wasn’t looking to get into a relationship… so I didn’t have anything to lose. But I was blown away with what a gentleman he was! Kind, fun, respectful, and handsome!

Long shot side quest:

Someone took a picture of the two of us that night and we never got a copy of this photo. If you happen to be one of my readers and have this picture, please send it to us!

Send an email to jessica@jessicakhope.com if you have it or know someone who might!

The Girlfriend

After that night every time I saw a MySpace message or a text from him I would get butterflies! We started hanging out more and more and about two months later we were together on New Year’s Eve, and as soon as midnight struck, while the fireworks exploded overhead, he nervously asked me if I would be his girlfriend… and of course I said yes!!!

Pinterest Icon Expand Image2007
How many hairstyles can we go through in one year?!

The months flew by, he continued to amaze me with how he treated me. I felt like at any moment I had to wake up from this dream, how did I get so blessed by this man? Surely there must be something wrong with him!

The Proposal

Well, a year (to the day!) went by and there we were in New York City… standing at the top of The Empire State Building. He says to me, “What’s this?” and grabs a brown paper bag off the top of a trash can and pulls a book from the bag (like… who does that? I really thought it was someone else’s… or trash). He opens it and begins to read it out loud (and I’m still thinking it’s not his… frantically looking for someone to take it from him) and then I realize that he was reading our story! This velvet-wrapped hand-stitched book was a book he hand-made about our past year. There were even drawings of moments we’d had together to go with each page. Well, he finished reading, pulled something from his jacket pocket, got down on one knee, and with lots of beautiful words that I don’t remember he asked me to be his wife. I was in total shock! I really REALLY wanted him to ask me on this trip, but he had even gotten my roomate in on his plan and she had convinced me that it wasn’t going to happen! So I really couldn’t believe it was actually happening!!!

Pinterest Icon Expand ImageDavid reading the book he made for me
Pinterest Icon Expand ImageDavid down on one knee proposing
Pinterest Icon Expand ImageSmiling after we got engaged
Pinterest Icon Expand ImageThe ring!

I said YES, just in case you’re wondering 😁

I was 21 at the time and many people had said things like, “You’re too young”, “You need to date longer”, “Are you sure about this?”, “You need to experience the world more”. I’m so glad I didn’t listen to any of them! So, with confidence we got married 6 months later! The most important people in my life didn’t question us, they knew our relationship and that we were made for each other. If my 21 year old self could see the future me now I probably would have married him sooner. He is every bit of that man I fell in love with and more. With every year that has flown by I have fallen for him over and over again in new ways. He pushes me every day to be the best version of myself not for him but for myself, and for our kids.

Today is our 10 year wedding anniversary and I couldn’t be more proud to be his wife!

Happy Anniversary, my Love!

<3 Together for forever Love, that’s the way it going to have to be! (Just a quote from a song he wrote and recorded for me while we were dating 😍)

Marriage Pro-Tips

They say it takes 10 years to master something. If I could give you 5 tips to apply to your (future) marriage it would be these:

  1. Look for a married couple that truly have it together. Learn from them. Even ask them for advice!!! (In our case it was our leaders at our church. Hi Sarah and Rory 👋)
  2. Know your spouse’s love language(s). I’ve promised to write about this before, and I will! But for now you can just Google it.
  3. Be willing to change and grow, don’t be so stuck in your own ways that you aren’t willing to become someone better (both for you, your spouse, and your kids). Be willing to change in the small ways (like learning to close the shower curtain so it doesn’t get moldy) and the big stuff (like when I realized I can choose the way I react to my emotions, which in turn puts me in control of my own feelings). I talk a little about my own journey with change and growth in my post on Insecurities.
  4. Make your spouse a priority before your kids. If your marriage is in the right place and if you are on the same page it makes a huge difference for your kids. Great Marriage = Better Parenting.
  5. Date each other. Especially if you have kids, go on dates. Put your phones down and get away with your spouse as much as you can, whether it’s just a few hours or a few days, find the time. Even if it just something small like playing a board game or sampling some cheese and wine in bed after putting the kids down for the night.

Thanks for reading! Have a happy and healthy future!

[1] You know… 12 years ago 20 year olds generally didn’t just meet people they knew from the Internet in person, especially by themselves. Doing so was considered very unwise back then. :-)

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