Maddi and Elisha

How We Met

Elisha and I met our sophomore year of college at Azusa Pacific University. He is originally from Kodiak, Alaska and I am from Washington. But somehow we both ended up at Southern California college! We met one sunny September day at our apartment complex’s pool! We instantly hit it off and hung out almost every day over the next few months (finding constant excuses to see each other or “study” for something or other! We both were signed up for the same study abroad program in Cape Town, South Africa that spring.

Maddi and Elisha's Engagement in Montenegro

We left for our study abroad trip just friends…(okay maybe there was a little, alright BIG, crush already involved!) Two weeks into our program, while walking on the beach I found a message in a bottle attached to a buoy near the shore. Within the message, Elisha asked me to be his girlfriend!

Maddi's Proposal in Montenegro

Within two months, I was head-over-heels in love and I already knew this incredible man was the one. We spent the next three years finishing up our degrees, graduating university and traveling as MUCH as we could! We have been to almost 40 countries together and fall more in love every day!

Wedding Proposal Ideas in Montenegro

how they asked

The day we got engaged fell in month 7 of our 8-month round-the-world trip! We started in Asia and are now making our way through Europe! We are currently in Kotor, Montenegro, a stunning bayside town surrounded by gorgeous mountains on all sides.

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Montenegro

The morning of our engagement day dawned, beautiful, crisp and cold! Elisha had told me a few days earlier that he was taking me on a date on this day and to be ready to go by 10AM! That morning, Elisha greeted me with a cup of hot coffee, not unusual ;) When I lifted the cup to take a sip, a note fluttered out from beneath my mug, “Reason #1 why I love you…”

I smiled at this sweet gesture, again not suspecting too much because a note like this wasn’t out of character for him. A few minutes later, over breakfast, I discovered a second note. We departed for our date day in the city. We had scarcely made it 100 yards from the house when I discovered another note, this time hidden WITHIN a Narnia style lamp post…!! Our date went on. We went wine tasting, visited a maritime museum, walked through the city and explored a gorgeous beach. At each stop, I would find another note, hidden within a city wall, a message in a bottle (JUST LIKE the way he’d asked me to be his girlfriend 3 years ago!) all these notes were hidden in the most creative little nooks and crannies that you would never even THINK to look in. Each note was another reason that he loves me.

Disclaimer: At this point, I’m getting a little like WHAT is going on. I kept taking frequent bathroom breaks to give myself pep talks HAHA. The thing is, he is acting SO normal. Cool as a cucumber. Not nervous or strange at all. We spent nearly an hour talking and skipping stones at a beachside spot that had the perfect view of the bay. The whole time my heart was like BOOM BOOM BOOM hahaha because of the way he kept looking at me and everything he kept saying!

But alas, we left the beach and were on to our next destination. Also, he is still SO calm. We arrived at an impossibly gorgeous restaurant that is built upon stilts so it essentially effortlessly hangs over the ocean. It’s beautiful and perfect. We both ordered, I got sea-bass? So random I know HAHA. When our waiter brought my meal, Reason #9 was attached. We enjoyed an amazing meal and then he starts looking at me like that again.

Cue bathroom break #76. When I come back, he’d left our table…and was waiting for me near the door. He led me outside to a private patio that overlooked the bay in the shadow of the mountains. Everything was so still and quiet. He pulled out Reason #10, told me he wanted to spend the rest of forever together and then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.


What follows is a blur. I attempted at least three Irish heel clicks. I can’t do these nor am I Irish. I screamed multiple times. I’m basically so HIGH on life that people probably assume I’m insane, but I can’t help it! Neither of us can. :) We skipped through the streets for the whole rest of the day and you know what? We haven’t stopped since. :)

Elisha is the kindest, most generous, hardworking, determined, creative, adventurous and wonderful man I have ever known. He surprises me CONSTANTLY with his wit, his intelligence and the insane way he loves me. This was the BEST day, but I have a feeling the day I marry him will be even better :)