We are Matthew and Katie Ruppert!
Matt and I grew up going to Leisure Week with our families every summer. Neither of us is able to remember a time without Tuscarora. From the time we were 4 and 5 years old the tradition of the family program was a part of our lives, and we can't even remember when we first met.
When we were older, and started the teen program at Leisure Week during high school, we began spending a lot of time together. He would walk me “home” (back to Hillside) at the end of every night.
Though we wouldn’t see each other or talk much throughout the year, in the summer it was like no time passed. We liked each other, but neither of us ever said anything about it. FINALLY, the summer after my first year of college (I had liked him since I was 14), on one of those nights when he was walking me "home," we stopped to talk and ended up talking about us!
We started dating and we would see each other once a month for that first year (he was away at school). The second year we were dating, I was in South America and we would email every day and talk on the phone each night.
That summer (2 years from when we started dating) he planned a picnic by the river and asked me to marry him! We got married this past August.
It may sound cheesy, but I really think I always knew Matt was the one for me! I dated other guys throughout high school, and relationships would always end after spending a week at Tuscarora with Matt! He was my standard. Matt was also sure of our future long before we started dating.
We never would have met or had a relationship if it wasn't for Tuscarora. It’s a really special place to us. We first started to get to know each other on those walks from Riverside to Hillside. We hope to bring our own kids to leisure week one day, and to continue to be involved with the Tuscarora family!
Our advice? Serve each other joyfully. When you see that something needs to be done or that the other person needs something, just do it- joyfully. Even if it’s something small, it makes the other person feel known and loved.