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ISSUE 01 • MARCH 2018


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nd o m Dia

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Featured Real-Life Stories To make you laugh. to make you cry. To celebrate love.




After his birthday passed with no proposal (one I "I turn and see his knew he had planned with some expert text message snooping, sorry babe) I stopped anticipating and just parents and sister enjoyed our time together. Also all of those manicures were getting pricey for my college student legitimately running budget. Fast forward to the second weekend in May we were in Chattanooga, TN for his sister's away from us..." graduation from his parent's alma mater. We got the full tour, including a hike in the park where his Dad first told his Mom he wanted to spend his life with her. At the end of our hike while enjoying the view of a gorgeous waterfall I turn and see his parents and sister legitimately running away from us. Confused but not concerned I turn back to the water and Carp joined me on my rock and told me he loved me. "I love you, too!" He grabbed me by the waist and turned me to face him and said "No, I REALLY love Our relationship has been a string of you." I immediately started crying. He dropped down stories of yes but my favorite one was the on one knee and I started nodding my head yes day Carpenter asked me to be his bride. We had been dating for 4 years and I knew before the poor kid could even ask me to marry him. I still have no idea what he said but loved every he was the one from the day we met, just babies at 17. At my 21st birthday party he second of our precious moment of "YES!" had a couple of drinks and showed all of my friends a picture of the ring he "Our relationship has designed with the team at Zachary's. Obviously they told me, that's what friends been a string of are for. So every weekend for the next 2 or 3 months I convinced myself he was stories of yes..." proposing. Hair done, nails perfect, outfit ready to go Friday-Sunday like clockwork.

#StoryofYes Amanda & Carpenter Warren

#StoryofYes Paige & Rusty

BLESS THE BROKEN ROAD I set out on a narrow way many years ago Hoping I would find true love along the broken road   But I got lost a time or two   Wiped my brow and kept pushing through   I couldn't see how every sign pointed straight to you Every long-lost dream led me to where you are   Others who broke my heart they were like Northern stars   Pointing me on my way into your loving arms   This much I know is true   That God blessed the broken road   That led me straight to you.

Sometimes it takes forever and a day to find the love of your life. In my case, let’s just say "wisdom comes with age" We are each other's best friends and have learned through experience how to have a successful marriage. Rusty proposed on July 4th. We were sitting on the front porch bench of our home watching fireworks. It was sweet and

memorable. I enjoy having that memory on a such a fun holiday. On our wedding day, the pastor sang for us. He had chosen the song after hearing our stories of how we met. It was incredibly moving and perfect. Everyday I am reminded how blessed we are and I am thankful to have found my one and only.



#StoryofYes Cole Rossiter & Leah Storti

engaged! Our parents have been friends since high school. Our Dads worked together in the same super market. Leah and I met soon after we were born in 1992, but not again until we were sophomores in college, even though we grew up only 30 minutes apart. Leah in Harwinton, CT and I in New Milford, CT. We were re-united for the first time in 2011 when our parents decided to get together for a family dinner at Applebees, but we were both seeing other people at the time. Again, in 2012 we got together for dinner at Bohemian Pizza. This time we were both single. After dinner, I asked her for her number and we started talking. The first time I asked her out, she turned me down. But, I was undeterred. The second time I asked her out she said yes. We went on our first date in May 2013. After a few dates she visited me at school in the fall and we started dating on October 20, 2013.Our relationship has been a tale of patience and distance. After school, I took a job in Maryland while she stayed in Connecticut to go to graduate school. We've lived 300 miles apart most of the time we've been together. It hasn't been easy but it has proven to us how strong our relationship is and how much we are in love.

"After dinner, I asked her for her number and we started talking. The first time I asked her out, she turned me down. But, I was undeterred." On Thanksgiving 2017 I proposed on her grandparents patio in front of her entire family. It was a magical moment and she said YES! After midday dinner we went to my parent's house to surprise them with the news ... and eat some more. We are getting married on December 1, 2018. And although we still live apart we know those days are coming to an end and we couldn't be happier for our future together!


#StoryofYes Janet Whitehead Davis & Edgar Lee Davis, Jr Our 1st date was at the National Portrait Gallery Museum in D.C. There is a book that you can sign and that is what we wrote in the book, "We're on our 1st date!" Two years later we were driving by and my husband (then boyfriend) pulled over stating that something was wrong with one of the tires on our brand new car. I got out of the car with him ready to see how I could help and he asked me if I could see what was wrong with the tire. I told him no and he had me back up onto the steps to get a better a look. He asked again, "Can you see...?" and again I said no.

In the rain, on one knee, in front of people walking by he asked "Can you see how much I love you, will you marry?" I jumped up and down, grabbed for the most amazing ring I have ever seen, and offered him the wrong hand to place it on. No I didn't answer him right away I was too overjoyed and completely surprised. It wasn't until he asked, "Can a brother get an answer?" did I scream YES!! #DavisStoryofYes!



#StoryofYes Brianna Vachon & Robert Vachon

city he pretended to tie his shoe and got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. The photographer he’d hired reveled himself and we took photos and ended our night with champagne and pizza at a small Italian place before heading home.

We were headed home to New Hampshire for Christmas his junior year at the Naval Academy, along the way we stopped in New York City— We’d somehow never gone before. He surprised me with a stay at the Waldorf Astoria and a full day planned the next day. He revealed the plans with envelopes with tickets in each one, we began with skating in Rockefeller center, went to see the Rockettes at Radio City and then his “favorite part of the day” going to watch the sunset at the top of the rock. As we looked out over the

"He revealed the plans with envelopes with tickets in each one..."


#StoryofYes Michele Conklin & Robert Conklin At 41, I was wondering if I would ever find love again, but praying and hoping for God to come through for me. My son was in college, my daughter almost 16, at a Bible School with me. Broken & wounded, from my first husband dying from alcoholism, many poor chooses along the way, including, a physically abusive relationship, yet hoping my “Prince” would still come along. My prayer was to meet a musician, who loved to worship, as I did.

ring if e d n o w I was find r e v e d I woul in... a g a e lov unspeakable joy! So If you have never been in the deepest valley, then you can never experience my “Prince” did come and he was a musician, and we were married within 6 months! Three years later we had a child together who only lived 71 days. Out of this tragedy, came a radio ministry with a prayer line. As we were transparent about what we were feeling, many people called in sharing their sorrows, and through prayer we watched God do many miracles. One of them written up in Readers Digest. I call my “Prince,” The love of my life & my one & only love. After 29 years of marriage, he stopped working for two months to see me through a life threatening disease, and once again, God doing a tremendous miracle! Now we are challenged with my “Prince’s” life threatening diagnosis. I will be by your side, my love, my life, with faith, hope, and prayer, my one and only love ��.


#StoryofYes Evangeline & Mike Ross When Mike & I were dating, we went on a picnic at the Naval Academy near the sea wall. There was a couple in their 80’s picnicking near us & we commented how sweet and in love they appeared to be. On the day Mike proposed, he took me back to the exact spot where that couple had been and asked me to spend the rest of our lives together and I said yes! Also, the next day Mike announced our engagement to our family on a flight to Vegas to celebrate my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary. The whole plane cheered. It was a wonderful celebration!


ane l p le o h a w s e a h T w " It . d re e e h c ful r e d won n" o i t ra b e l ce


#StoryofYes Megan Carr &Â Patrick Houst The story begins in a small apartment building in Annapolis where both Patrick and Megan lived separately with their dogs. Seamus (Patrick's 5 year old Chocolate Lab) and Lucy (Megan's Goldendoodle puppy) quickly became friends. Since Megan was new to the dog owning world she did not have a full grasp on how much energy Lucy had or how to help her alleviate that energy. This is where the friendship started. From teaching Lucy fetch to dog sitting when Megan had to work late, Patrick and Seamus quickly became apart of Megan and Lucy's lives. It did not take long for Megan and Patrick to start going out without the pups. Their first date was a typical day after Tug of War in Eastport, they were both a bit hungover and needed some good pub food. Patrick decided to show Megan one of his favorite spots in Annapolis, Davis's Pub. The relationship started there as well as escalated to the next level right across the street a couple years later when Patrick popped the question with a beautiful Zachary's ring. Megan of course said yes! It did not take long for Patrick and Megan to realize they were meant to be together. From their first kiss when Patrick smoothly told Megan she had something on her face and went in for the kill to late nights watching movies and playing Spit. In the three years that Patrick and Megan have been together, they've been through a lot, but they have been there for each other every step of the way. They are excited to continue the journey that all started with a "yes".


norway: a tour of harstad

#StoryofYes Elyse Bertling & James Bertling Our story stared way back in 1991. I met Jim at a mutual friends house. It was fall and I went for a bike ride and my high school friend had the guys overs he told me to stop by and hang out and being a guys girl I said I would when I was done enjoying the beautiful fall day in Michigan. There was a “new” guy there named Jim. There was an immediate feeling like I had known him for years. I found out he grew up just 2 miles from me. We talked all afternoon like we were old friends. We remained friends until things/circumstances changed for both of us in 2009 and were married in 2010. He jokes that we met as kids at the Sanders ice cream shop. That’s why it felt like old times when we were formally or informally as the case was in 1991. He still remains my best friend.


#StoryofYes Sean Doherty &Â Katia MacNeill-Doherty Our story of yes takes place in New York City. Katia and I had been dating for 3 years and I knew that she was the one person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I told her that a friend's band was playing a concert in Central Park and that we were invited to a pre-show cocktail party. This was all a ruse to get Katia to a spot I had picked in Strawberry Fields past the John Lennon Imagine Memorial. We made our way to my spot that offered a bit of privacy. I asked Katia if she was happy and if she loved me. She replied, "you know I do." I dropped to one knee and asked Katia to marry me. She said yes and I slid on the custom engagement ring I had made by my hometown jeweler, Zachary's of Annapolis.

Afterwards we headed to lunch with our friend and her husband. After lunch Katia thought we were headed back to our apartment. I asked the cab driver to make a detour to the Waldorf Astoria. I took Katia upstairs to the Penthouse Suite I reserved for the weekend where a a team of hairdressers and stylists were waiting to get her ready for our celebratory evening.

norway: a tour of harstadÂ

Katia didn't notice while I was proposing, but I had asked our friend who introduced us to each other and who also happens to be a photo journalist to hide in the bushes of the park and take pictures of the proposal.

After putting on the dress I had waiting for her in the hotel room I gave Katia her post proposal present, or what I call the Triple P. This was a bracelet I had purchased from Tiffany and Co that looked great with her new dress. We then headed to dinner at a small restaurant on the Lower East Side where we had our first date 3 years before. After dinner I took Katia to a Champagne Lounge in Tribeca where all of our friends were waiting to surprise her. It was a night to remember.



#StoryofYes Mia & Bill Cranford

Vic’s for a drink then to a beautiful French Restaurant for dinner. The whole time I am waiting for a ring but no ring came. When dinner was over we went back to the Plaza hotel, to the Oak Room, for an after dinner drinks. But still no ring.

He picked me up at the University of Maryland before one of my classes to tell me he was taking me away for Valentine’s Day. He wouldn’t say where we were going but we eventually pulled up to the most beautiful hotel I had ever seen. It ‘s name was the Plaza Hotel. I felt like a princess. We had a room overlooking Central Park. The whole time I thought we were getting engaged, but he would say no, this is your Valentines Day gift.We dressed for dinner and went to Trader

Finally, I am exhausted and I realize we are not getting engaged. We head up to our to our room and I open the door and in front of me are two dozen long stem red roses and a bottle of Dom Perignon chilling in a bucket. I turn around and my now husband is on one knee with a ring box in his hand and a letter for me to read because he was worried he wouldn’t remember want he wanted to tell me. It was truly the most magical night of my life. It was right out of a fairytale.


! d e g Enga

#StoryofYes Marisa Kopack & Jacob Shepard

Jake and I met July 21 2007 when we were 13 years old on vacation in Myrtle Beach South Carolina. I was walking on the beach and saw Jake and fell instantly in love. I guess you could say it was love at first sight! After exchanging instant messenger names and phone numbers we became best friends. We lost contact for a bit but saw each other again UN planned in 2009 and again in 2011 when we finally decided to become “official”. Jake was from upstate NY and I was from here in Maryland. We did long distance for 4 years. Jake always promised me he would move to Maryland once he graduated college and boy did he keep his promise! We moved in to our first apartment together in August 2015 and on June 28th 2017 Jake popped the question with a gorgeous custom designed Zachary’s engagement ring right here in downtown Annapolis! We are getting married on August 17th 2018! Our love story is truly a dream come true. Never would I of thought I would meet my soul mate at 13 years old just walking on the beach.



#StoryofYes Kellie Lydic & Mark Lydic

"Somewhere along the way, we fell in love.

I am not even sure where to begin... I knew Mark from work, we we’re both going through a divorce and neither one of us wanted to ever get married again. We were friends that took our kids bowling or to the movies, just spending time with each other. Somewhere along the way, we fell in love. We agreed that we would always take care of each other and love each other until we died, but somewhere in all the chaos he asked me to marry him. My first thought was you don’t get to change the rules after a feeble years dating... but he convinced me to marry him.

We agreed that we would always take care of each other and love each other until we died..." His brother drove a semi and had gotten a ticket in Cincinnati and he needed a ride to court. So Mark and I drove down from Michigan to take him to court and while we were there we found a judge to marry us. It was an amazing time. We were married for 13 years when we found out he had cancer, we were married on July 19, 1999, and on February 5, 2013 he passed away. I lost the love of my life. I think of him always and so wish he was here so he could tell me one more time, hold me once more, but all I have now are memories, beautiful memories of a love that I never ever dreamt was possible. He gave me love, passion and more importantly he gave me strength. He gave me the strength to live without him, something I never thought possible. Thank you for letting me share my story.

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#storyofyes issue 01 (1)  
#storyofyes issue 01 (1)  

Every couple has a story and for most it's a story of affirmation—from saying "yes" to a first date, to saying "yes" to getting married, and...