Matt and Ivana met on an LDS mission in Mexico, meaning that a relationship between the two of them was strictly off limits until they returned home. Despite limited contact between men and women on their mission, Matt and Ivana were one of the only two people who knew English in the area, and they soon became close because of it. Matt remembers thinking about how cute she was, and how he wished he could be with her- only to find out a year and a half later that she had written the exact same thing in her diary when they had met!
They couldn’t date yet, but they could dream about it as they painted watercolor paintings together and spent every free day they could with each other, becoming closer and closer as friends. Ivana would be returning home six months before Matt, and she started giving him chocolate Kisses “one for each week we won’t be able to see each other”- 26 weeks. 26 chocolate kisses.
They caught a lucky break when Matt’s mission sent everyone home early- only one week after Ivana had returned home! Because of covid, they were trying to quarantine themselves and social distance, but they couldn’t wait that long to spend some time with each other. Their first date was over facetime, watching the romantic movie of the decade- Toy Story 4.
At the end of the date, Matt revealed a secret he had been keeping since his mission. The chocolate kisses. He had kept them all! He pulled out a random Kiss and almost choked on a piece of paper folded inside. The note in tiny handwriting read- “The next kiss I give you will be in person”. Ivana had written the love note on a small piece of paper, folded it up, put it in the Kiss wrapper, and re-wrapped the Kiss for him to find the note later as a surprise! How serendipitous that that would be the exact Kiss he chose to open on their first date!
Matt and Ivana, you guys have one of the cutest love stories I’ve ever known! Your dedication and heart towards each other, even in the face of obstacles, tells me you guys will be a perfect match for a long, long time. I love you both, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for two beautiful romantics like you guys!