One year to go...

Today marks one year until our wedding day! But what's even cooler is that yesterday marked a full eight years since the night that Les and I first met. It's so wild to think that we've known each other and have been together for almost a decade. We met when we were eighteen years old, and now we're in our mid-late twenties. We have been through and done a whole lot together, so I thought it would be fun today to share a memory/moment from each year we've been dating! It was a lot harder than I thought it would be to pick just one per year, especially because some years were so big for us. But what I ended up with were memories that were kind of milestones for us. A little trip down memory lane...

during our first year...

September 2011-September 2012

I have a zillion pictures from our first year of dating, partly because it was also the first year of college and taking pictures was the thing to do! Choosing one memory for our first year together was actually harder than I thought, but the one that I think sticks out the most is when we went to Niagara Falls together our first summer after college. This was our first trip together and we still laugh about one particular highlight... We went for two nights in between Les's 19th birthday and my 19th birthday (only five days apart) in June. Since the drinking age is 19 in Canada, Les ordered a beer with dinner on our first night, and I ordered a virgin strawberry daiquiri. I'm not sure if "virgin" means the same thing in Canada as it does here when it comes to alcohol, or if the server just thought he was being generous, but I ended up getting a real drink. The result? I got SUPER excited about the live guitarist, Chico, who was preforming at the restaurant. He was playing covers of songs like Wild World by Cat Stevens and I insisted that we HAD to buy his CD. We played it in the car on the way home the day that we left, and of course they weren't covers of classics-- they were his original, much less compelling songs. Les still pokes fun at me for being one of Chico's biggest fans.

our second year...

September 2012-September 2013

I think I set myself up with using what I think is a really great photo for our "year one" memory, because this one is less than great. :) The second year that we were dating, Les stayed at Northeastern for most of the summer with the rowing team. I was home in Connecticut but I took the train up to visit him so that we could go see the Rolling Stones together! We've gone to a lot of concerts together since then (and a few before then) but this one was definitely one of our favorites! The other reason why this memory stuck out is because on the train ride up to to Boston, my train broke down and was stranded on the tracks for maybe a little over an hour. No big deal, right? Not for most people! But I'm incredibly claustrophobic and have anxiety about being "stuck" places-- the train was getting super hot since it was powered down and the AC wasn't running, and I was panicked about not being able to go anywhere. We finally got moving again after what felt like ages, and the next stop was Providence, RI. Even though we were on our way again, I just felt like I needed to get off that train. Les, being my hero, left Boston and drove down to meet me in Providence and picked me up from there. Since then, he has always come through for me; he knows me better than anyone-- what makes me anxious and how to fix it-- and it means the world to me that no matter how silly it may seem, he'll always show up for me.

our third year...

September 2013-September 2014

During our third year of dating, Les and I went to Las Vegas for my cousin's wedding. I feel like I always have to clarify that my cousin was stationed there in the Air Force and his fiancé is from Vegas, and they had a BEAUTIFUL outdoor wedding that was not in a 24hr chapel... Anyways, this was the first time that Les traveled with my family and I. It was honestly just such a fun trip and it was really exciting going somewhere that neither of us had ever been before, and I loved having Les with me at a big family event. It was a quick trip, but one of our favorites!

our fourth year...

September 2014-September 2015

The fourth year we were dating, we adopted Nestile! There's so much I could say about this little love; I wrote a bit about her in this post here, but she has brought so much happiness and goofiness into our lives. She's made Les and I more active, and she has so many quirks that I think make her perfect for us. Having Nestlie has solidified, in our minds, that we'll always be dog people, and we'll always be dachshund people. It's wild to think we've had her for half of our relationship now, and it's honestly hard to remember "us" without Nestlie. I love this little family of mine.

our fifth year...

September 2015-September 2016

During our fifth year of dating (and after our fifth year of College-- we did two full semesters of co-op while at Northeastern) we graduated together. It was so incredible to finish college the same way we started it-- together. Almost my entire experience at Northeastern is defined by Les and I wouldn't have it any other way. We helped each other study, proofed each other's papers, and we even took a math class together. Right before we graduated is also when we moved in together (we actually adopted Nestlie before I officially moved into his apartment)! It was so comforting to take such a big step into the "real world" and into our first jobs knowing I had Les by my side.

our sixth year...

September 2016-September 2017

Another not-so-great photo, but a really really incredible memory. The sixth year we were together, Les finished his Master's in Finance at Boston College. I was SO proud of him!! He started as a music industry major in college before realizing that he was passionate about finance. So he studied like crazy right after we finished college, took the GMAT, and got into one of the best programs in the country. This felt like a SUPER adult moment for both of us because I would finish my master's a few months later. This whole year marked a lot of hard work and late nights for both of us. Les was in his program full-time, taking a full course load and then interning as well toward the end, and I was working full-time and taking two classes a semester at night. We sometimes wouldn't see each other until 10:30 at night when we would eat a quick dinner and then crash. But we did it, and are better for it!

our seventh year...

September 2017-September 2018

Our seventh year of dating marks another "adult" moment for us because it's when we moved out of Boston and up to the North Shore for both of our jobs. Les got a full-time offer where he had been interning and I took the job that I'm in now. When we moved to Boston, we were dropped off by our parents as 18 year old college freshmen. But moving up to the North Shore, we picked our own place and it kind of felt like we were laying down some roots! What's even more special is that this is where we'll get married, too. In fact, this photo was taken on the beach right below Misselwood Estate! This was also the year we went to Europe with my family-- ah! I told you that some years were big for us!

& our eighth year together.

September 2018-September 2019

Of course my favorite memory during our eighth year of dating was getting engaged and officially deciding on forever with my best friend. Les and I knew really early on (I'm talking our first year together) that we would get married. In between all of these incredible memories we had our ups and downs like every couple does, but I think we both always knew that nothing would ever be big enough to change the fact that we're each other's "person." Getting engaged just affirms that we've decided, for better or for worse, we're in this together.

Ok, that was a lot of sappiness...but as I told Les yesterday morning, I think it's really important to reflect on the fact that we're SO lucky to have found each other and to have done so at such an early age, which means we get to experience a lot of milestones together. We also did a lot of maturing together, and in some ways we're different people than when we first met. But we're still in love, still compatible, still growing, and I think that's pretty cool. Let the one year countdown to the big day BEGIN


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