UCSB Belltower

The Story of Us:

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away two adorable youths came together to find true love. Okay, enough with the crap. Here's our story...

We met on October 24, 1997 at an "80's dance" held at St. Mark's church in Goleta, CA while we were both students at UC Santa Barbara. Katrina was a bouncer at the door and was excited to welcome Mike to the dance. Mike could not keep his eyes off Katrina the entire evening. For both of us, it was practically love at first sight.

Katrina spent the following summer doing volunteer work in the Dominican Republic, while Mike entertained himself by spending plenty of hours bodyboarding at Pismo Beach, CA. The time apart was difficult so early on in the relationship, but we found that our affection for each other only grew stronger.

The next year, the only thing separating us was the lawn between our two apartments. Mike could see Katrina's front door from his back porch. We spent many evenings studying together, going for walks, or eating ice cream in the park. For Mike's 21st birthday, we took the customary road trip to Las Vegas.

Katrina graduated that June and two months later, in August of 1999, moved to Tucson, AZ to begin graduate school at the University of Arizona. Meanwhile, Mike was beginning his senior year at UCSB, so it was back to a long distance relationship for us. We enjoyed spending our vacations and long weekends together, either Mike traveling to Tucson to see Katrina, or Katrina visiting Mike in Santa Barbara. We also had large phone bills that year. AT&T's stock did very well.

Mike finding a job in Tucson brought us together that summer. While Katrina spent endless days and nights studying for her qualifying exams, Mike began working for a software company called Ephibian. On August 5, 2000, the day after Katrina finished her exams, Mike took her out to a nice dinner to celebrate. Unknown to Katrina at the time, Mike had an ulterior motive. That night between the salad and the main course, Mike got down on one knee with a ring in his hand and asked Katrina to marry him. For the first time in her life, Katrina was speechless. All she could do was give Mike a hug, and when she finally caught her breath, she whispered "Yes."

Mike finished his degree in December that year, and relocated to Tucson permanently. By this time, the wedding plans were in full swing. In August while casually looking at new houses being built in Tucson, we fell in love with one of the model homes, and just a week later signed the papers to have a house built for ourselves. We spent the next 5 months visiting our house every Sunday after church and watching it's progress as it was being built. In January of 2002, our house was finished and we moved in.

The next 6 months went by like 6 days, and on June 22 at 2pm we were married at St. Joan of Arc church in San Ramon, CA. The honeymoon was a wonderful 2 weeks spent at Disneyworld in Florida and on a Carnival cruise in the Caribbean.

In the years since our wedding, Katrina finished her PhD and accepted a position as a Mathematics professor at Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant, MI. Mike left his job at Ephibian and started his own software company called Gaucho Software. We are both enjoying our lives and careers here in small-town Michigan, and are living happily ever after...