homegrown love.

Happy almost Thanksgiving! I have another sweet installment in the {distance makes your heart grow fonder} series--featuring Robbie and Mateya {of The Best Is Yet to Come}. These high school sweethearts were long distance from the start, as they grew up a few towns apart. I won't steal her thunder, so keep reading to find out how they learned to navigate college and his two deployments before they finally got married last October. They will soon add a new member to their family when Mateya has a baby in May. Yay!

Name: Mateya
Significant Other's Name: Robbie
When did you start dating? We started dating all the way back in high school! He was 15 and I was 16—yes, I am a proud cougar ;) We had a few hiccups over the years, but eight years later, we just celebrated our first wedding anniversary.

At what point did you begin dating long distance? Our relationship has always been some sort of long distance. We grew up in different towns (about 45 minutes apart) and went to different high schools, so our relationship was rooted in phone calls, MSN Messenger (remember that?!), and seeing each other on the weekends. Robbie is in the Air Guard, so he went to Texas for basic training after graduation. I opted to go to college about two hours away from my hometown. When Robbie got home from basic training, he went to school an hour away from me, so the long distance continued. Robbie also did two deployments to Iraq, so long distance has a whole new meaning for us.  Infrequent telephone calls and Skype were our saving grace!

How do you fill your days while you're apart? We spent them with friends and family! While Robbie was in Iraq, I took advantage of the time I had with my girlfriends. I knew when he returned that I would want my time with him! I also went home to visit my parents and siblings, which helped immensely. Sometimes you just need your mama!

{wedding photos taken Matt Lien + used with permission}

What do you find most difficult about being long distance? The thing that I found most difficult was the fact that we would bicker over little things. It was often due to the fact we were just missing each other in some shape or fashion. I could always tell when it had been awhile since we had seen each other because we would sort of get on one another’s nerves. Once we saw each other again, everything was just fine!

How has long distance changed your relationship? Being long distance really helped me to appreciate and savor the time we do have together. It also allows you realize the little petty things don’t matter in the big scheme of things.

What do you enjoy most about the time you have together? When we were dating, we would go out to eat, go to movies, or cook dinner together. We wanted to spend time just us. Now that we are married, I enjoy having him with me at home and just doing “normal” things together, which we waited so long to do!

What sacrifices did you made in order to make things work? I used to live in the city and work in a job I really enjoyed. When Robbie was done with college, his plan had always been to go home to work on the family farm. It helped to know this plan from the start because I knew that if I wanted to be with him forever, I would be moving to the country and living on a farm. I never thought we would actually end up there, but we bought acreage to make our home. I moved out of the city and got a new job. We have cows, turkeys, cats, and a dog--and I spend my evenings riding in the tractor with my husband. I miss the city and all of my girlfriends, but being married and finally getting to be in the same place as Robbie is so worth it!

How has your life changed now that you're back in the same place? It is just so nice to be able to wake up next to him every morning. Cook supper together at night, play with our dog, and work in our garden. All of those little things are really just so fun. 

Be sure to stop by and give Mateya some love today. She and Robbie are definitely a shining example for those of you who still face long distance today. I love how she learned to keep her focus on the big picture--and not worry about the small stuff :) Thanks again for sharing your story, Mateya. I hope you all are able to spend your holidays with the ones you love...and if you can't, just remember: your separation isn't forever. You'll just be one of those lucky couples who really know how to appreciate their time together! Travel safely!


  1. Loved getting to know their story a bit better!!! Love you both! <3

  2. They are really sweet! That was a lot of long distance! How amazing to be done with it and able to spend every day together! :) Yay for them!

  3. Such a sweet story! Love your Wednesday posts with all these awesome long distance stories! xo

  4. I can relate to going a long time and then begin to bicker over the tiny things until we see each other again.

    So glad they're together now on their farm. Sounds like a wonderful start to their lives together.
    Emily at Amazing Grapes

  5. Another great love story! I especially enjoying here all the appreciation in these long distance relationships.

  6. such a sweet story! Hope your mom is feeling well!

  7. i think high school sweetheart stories are the most romantic. such a sweet couple!

  8. Aw, I love that they met in high school! And the wedding photos are precious. :)

  9. I really admire your love story! Just like you, we had to wait for 7 years before me & my wife got married and we are still together. Glitches on the road to forever but nothing is impossible and fixable with love, unlike the stories from Paperhelp coupon codes which end up in a devastating way.