Mike and Heidi met at a little local coffee shop, in which she trained him. After Mike left to pursue research, they spent more time together and realized they were better people together. After dating for a year and a half, Mike proposed outside the coffee shop where they met. Six months later they were married in northern Idaho in 2015. They currently live in Oak Park, encouraging each other in their artistic & spiritual pursuits, riding the trains daily to work, and looking forward to waking up next to each other each morning.
We are excited to celebrate these two tomorrow night at The Big Fake Wedding Chicago! Read on for their Sappy Love Story!
What was the absolute best memory from your wedding day?
From him: It’s a tie between three things–don’t ask me to choose. Holding onto Heidi while the wedding guests sang “How Great Thou Art”–a hymn that speaks in part to the glory of God in nature–while we were outdoors in beautiful northern Idaho with the sun shining through the trees around us. Eating the food (no judgements, please–it was fantastic). Arriving at our bed & breakfast the first night, knowing that no one was going to bother us for the next week and a half.
What advice would you give an engaged couple?
From him: I’m going to call this advice for guys, but surely there are women who can use it, whether directly or in order to understand what men go through. Listen first, then only speak if you can do it lovingly. You might think you have the best opinion or the most knowledge in a particular situation (especially if an argument is brewing), but chances are that she feels the same way. Two years into marriage, I wouldn’t exactly call myself an expert in this art, but it has been entirely beneficial when properly executed. For real, 99% of volatile situations can be reigned in by shutting your mouth and opening your ears.
What’s the best gift Mike has ever given you?
From her: Regarding love languages, I am a words of affirmation person. I thrive on a positive word and wilt (or become unnecessarily stubborn) in response to a negative word. Men and women (all people for that matter) do not always see eye to eye on how to demonstrate love, but Mike decided to commit to my affinity for words in a tangible way. He gave me one of the best birthday gifts I have ever received. A week prior to my birthday last year, he began a blog for me. He calls it “Words for my Wife” and writes to me every single day! I cherish each post; some are funny, others are faithfully written after a tough day, and many speak of his love for God and for me. My confidence in his love for me grows each time I read and reread (and reread) his words for me.
What’s the most unique part about your engagement story?
From her: Prior to engagement, I overheard Mike tell some of our friends at a New Years Eve party that he had the ring and that he planned to propose to me the following Saturday. Consequently, the next day I acquired a no-chip manicure–of course–to be prepared. That Saturday came and went; I had cleared my schedule and waited through each part of the day for him to pop the question. It ended in a tearful phone call with many apologies from my then dear boyfriend–he had not yet been able to talk with my dad, which is something he and I both valued. I assumed it would happen sometime in February. Instead it happened the next weekend (no-chip still intact)! During dinner he gave me a homemade card (yes, card stock and cut-out shapes) with a letter inside that talked of our future. I believed it to be a kind gesture to mend some of my confusion the prior Saturday. Following dinner, he drove us to the coffee shop in which we met, recited from memory the letter he had written, knelt down in the snow, and asked me to be his wife. Mike has declared January 3rd “Wasted Manicure Day” in tribute to the hilarity of my efforts to be prepared, and gifts me a no-chip manicure each year to remember.
What is the most awesome thing about your marriage?
From him: On a surface level, definitely the faces we make at each other. Not a days goes by without her acting like a total dork and I like a total doofus, contorting our faces like something out of Cirque du Soleil. Also, she’s currently silly walking over and over past the kitchen entrance as I write these words at the dining room table. We often do things like this. But actually, the best thing about our marriage is how at the end of the day, no matter what words were exchanged, act committed, or emotions expressed, we still have each other’s backs and would go through hell for each other. No, really. That kind of a statement could seem trite, but it needs to be true. Sometimes things suck royally, but we committed to each other to brave each storm together–so we do.
What is ‘your song’ and why?
It’s easily the song we used for our first dance, Needtobreathe’s “A Place Only You Can Go.” Sending her a link to the song has to be the single moment the necessary events for us to be married began to unfold. Upon a misguided interpretation of the tune, I sent it to Heidi under the impression that it was about God–she informed me it is most definitely about a woman. Of course, maybe that was just my mind keeping me [blissfully] ignorant in order to begin things with Heidi. At any rate, she didn’t know how to take it, we ended up dating, one thing led to another, and we ended up married.
Julie Miller Photography (1, 2)
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