"We met October 13, 2011. A Thursday...." Garrett
"Yes, it was a Thursday." Natalie
"She came with some friends to a halloween party, my friend wanted me as a wingman for the girl he was pursuing there; that girl was crazy so obviously he didn't want to go alone. I wasn't even in a costume or anything. Then Natalie came up to my friend and me and asked... him first if he wanted to dance. He said "No", so she was like... fine I'll settle for this guy. " Garrett
(Laughing)"Maybe it's cause he was less cute. This other guy looked less threatening than Garrett." Natalie
"So we started dancing and ended up dating that night. I guess she had some pretty good dance moves. By March I'd moved in with her." Garrett
"She's not afraid to stand up to people or situations for the betterment of herself or others. For example, we found these stray kittens across the road; Natalie would go across the street every single day, without fail. Everyday at the same times she'd feed them and take care of them, to make sure they were okay. It was a lot of hard work and to be honest very tiresome of how much effort we had to put into making sure they'd survive. Then she tried to get them adopted and the pet store told us we were committing a felony, cause we couldn't prove it wasn't someone else's cat. But Natalie, she just stood up to them and kind of put them in their place. And we got those kittens adopted! I mean it had been weeks of feeding and caring for these animals, Natalie wasn't gonna take it. I joke sometimes she's my little bulldog, I usually don't care when people are being stupid or in the wrong. Natalie, she stands up right away though, even if they're twice her size; she gets up in their face and call them out. I love it. "Garrett
How are you involved in the community?
"A huge part of our community is the animals we come across. I can't tell you how many dogs we've found on the side of the road and called the number on the collar, we once had a cat get stuck in our window well— we let him in and hung out with him for a couple hours, took a nap with him. We love to be outside, in nature, fishing camping. The outdoors are a big part of our community, we like to get up to the mountains as much as we can." Natalie
"As a couple we are extremely passionate about activism —politically, with animal rights, people rights, environmental changes. We have friends that haven't put a lot of thought into some of these areas, but through our passion we often do raise awareness and spark other people's passion of topics or acts they weren't aware of before." Garrett
How do you manage balance?
"In the beginning of our relationship, we kind of went through hell and back again, like five times— now with the little things that would normally bug most couples, compared to what we've gone through together, it's very minuscule.
Right off the bat, that first night we got together Natalie ended up getting pregnant. Suddenly, we had to deal with some pretty huge decisions. We do have a daughter and she was placed for adoption. Not a lot of people know that— it's not super common for two people to have a child together, give that child up, but still find their way back to one another. We did spend time apart, I dated someone else after she was born, yet ended up coming back to Natalie for all the reasons I've listed and more. Eventually, we got married after our child was placed for adoption." Garrett
"We went through so many emotional ups and downs in the beginning. Our relationship similar to the analogy of the tree, where the tree is weathered, and strengthens its roots as a result of the weathering. I remember Garrett saying to me when I was four or five months pregnant, 'I hate coming over here because it's always like a lion's den.' And I would say, 'Good that's what it is. We are having to make some huge decisions and it should feel like a lion's den.' Since we started with such an extremely difficult situation and were able to work through it and past it, over the years it gave our relationship an incredibly strong foundation. Now we have such good communication, in that time we couldn't just talk about it later. We got good at speaking our minds, and saying it fast. We really learned to work as a team. " Natalie
"It's pretty confrontational at first, very strong opinions are put down. We never name call or throw plates or anything, but it can start off fairly loud. After that, we usually get some space and think about it and cool off. We have this saying, "I love you, but I don't like you right now." To us, of course, we always love each other. I'm always going to tell him that. But in addition, I can also disagree with you. " Natalie
How do you embrace individuality?
"We express our individuality through how we chose to spend our money, I love to spend our money more on experiences where he would rather get something more material. For our birthdays I got him a bag that he had his eye on. I knew he would love and enjoy it and for my birthday we went on a weekend trip, got messages, that kind of thing." Natalie
"For me I'm very quick to jump from hobby to hobby. For example, I brew my own beer, there was a year I got really into it bought books, equipment, got my own recipes, subscriptions, etc. Natalie got way into it with me too, one day she just cleared all the equipment out of my brewing room, vacuumed, swept, painted, put in shelves. I came home to it all, it was very kind and supportive of her. She's just always there saying 'okay let's do it, or what's the next step?'" Garrett
What's your biggest difference?
"Garrett is more of a people pleaser, he's more willing to listen and accept what people have to say. I definitely can't tolerate when I feel like someone is wrong or lying. That's our biggest difference. It compliments well in our relationship cause we help balance each other out, a time to listen and a time to speak up." Natalie
Where does religion take place?
"To us it's all science, the probability, and the chance of life— that's so beautiful to me. I never felt a connection to anything as strongly as I do when I look at it through that perspective. You get one life and that's it, so do what you can. That resonates with me so strongly, and the fact that I found someone who ended up on the same page, it's pretty amazing." Garrett
A power couple you look to?
"Bonnie and Clyde. They were murderous thieves, the worst kind of people together, yet through all the horrible things they did— they couldn't leave each other to die. It's huge after everything they'd done morally, but especially for the time that they lived in with male and female roles. That loyalty to one another is pretty powerful." Natalie