The Marriage Project | Erich & Keely


Erich & Keely got married on a blazing-hot 4th of July, almost a year & a half ago. The entire day was overflowing with the kinds of things we live for at a wedding day--laughter, happy tears, raucous best friends, plenty of alcohol, and alcohol-embellished dance moves. We've been wanting to just hang out with them ever since, and we thought they'd be a perfect couple for another Marriage Project post. 

Keely is quickly & beautifully approaching her due date, and they're expecting their baby Weston in a few weeks. The boys had wine, the ladies put their feet up, and we all fought over each other's amazing Erich-created berry cobbler. We had an amazing time laughing and comparing pregnancy and marriage notes, and rehashing their wedding day. They told us about their amazing Mexico honeymoon (Erich even got them first-class plane tickets as a surprise, and Keely was so happy and exhausted that she cried). They're even happier and cozier together now that they've been married almost a year (although it's harder to hug/put shoes on these days). :)

[Since we've interviewed these two, their glorious baby boy Weston has made his chunky debut!]

how he describes her

Full of love--and he gets to receive so much of it.

how she describes him

Full of life, SO friendly. He inspires her to be more kind and outgoing. His comfort zone is: everything. She's more affectionate now because of him (even hugs her best friends finally). 

EK Marriage Project19.jpg

favorite thing about being married

His: Having a forever teammate.

Hers: Getting to introduce him "my husband" instead of "the guy from the bar". 

tricky things about being married

We loved how Erich said this: "It's not about my way anymore, it's about our way." With random little habits, household things, putting the blinds down or not... Being able to let things go and being willing to change.

new things learned about each other

That she can eat anything at anytime. (Even garlic wheat thins before breakfast).

That he actually doesn't have a cold heart. He has a totally new-to-her sensitive soul.

their marriage in one word


date nights

Pretty much single Friday night since they've been together (4 years), Erich has either taken Keely out, or made dinner in. No talking about work, no TV and no sweatpants--a time to dress up and reconnect together. Their favorite "dates" are also all-day Saturday dates, going up to the Columbia Gorge and hiking, getting hungry, and heading to Hood River for beer and lunch.

jobs (usually)

She cooks dinner, he washes dishes. They nonverbally happen to take care of different things: Keely scrubs the toilet, Erich cleans up dog poop.


the most important thing they do every day

He gives her a kiss and a hug when she gets home. She can get caught up in getting home, starting dinner, and busyness, and it helps her to reset and realize she's home. 

her advice to husbands

Just listen! And don't zone out--try to take it in, and not always try to solve it.

his advice to wives

Support him. There's nothing a man needs more than knowing his girl 100% believes in him.

key to marriage (kinda)

Have three bathrooms and poop in the one that's furthest away from the other person. 

what they're most excited about

Baby! They're thrilled to get to be parents, and have been ready to start their family ever since they got married. Being together has been amazing, easy, and comfortable, and they're excited for the new challenge, and the complete change to their life/routine. 

marriage + baby

It's super important to them to continue to prioritize their marriage. As Keely put it, "Erich will still be #1, and the baby will be #1.5." 


A couple months after we got married, we went to India. (Not something we'd planned on doing right after becoming newlyweds, but we had no idea at the time that we'd be getting married so soon). We went with a group of 16 of the best of people--young & wise, older & wise, young & hilarious.

We had a whirlwind 24-hour layover in China, and then ended up in Kolkata, where worked at a church called the Grace Community Center. Spent several days teaching computer classes, English classes, and getting to fall in love with and wrangle kids in their daycare or "creche" for children (many of whom would be running wild on the streets while their parents were at work if not for the church's ministry). After a few days of that, we went to the Sundarban Islands, where it feels like you've stepped back a couple thousand years, and where some people have never seen a single person with white skin; We did street evangelism there--preaching, skits, lots of singing (even some beautiful Bengali songs we had learned), a call to faith, and prayed with them and then passed out Bibles & stickers for the mobs of kids at the end.

Having managed not to get bitten by one of the terrifying bugs found in the jungle area hostels we stayed at, and unfortunately/fortunately not having spotted a Bengal tiger, we made it back to the city. Back at the church, we started into the Vacation Bible School--mobs of excited and listening beautiful faces, lots of singing, flannel graphs, skits, crafts, and chaos. Some of the hardest work I've ever done. In between everything, we had some time for exploring Kolkata (the Victoria Memorial, Mother Teresa's house, etc) and plenty of thrilling bus rides.

It's been something hard to explain, like most out-of-country, eye-opening things. Thankfully, Peter made this video, which is a way to show people who've asked "how was it?" a little bit of what it was like. Since "it was amazing! and a lot of things!" isn't the most helpful of explanations. I always feel like, with a trip, you can either tell someone everything, or you can just say "it was good." Most people do not want to hear everything, but "it was good" doesn't exactly do it justice either. Therefore: videos and pictures. It was also the kind of trip where so many completely foreign things were happening all the time, that it's hard to actually process what's happened until later, which I don't think I have quite yet. 

It was challenging, it was exhausting, eye-opening, it shocked our cynicism with the powerful working of the Holy Spirit in the people we talked to. I wanted to bring home about 25 kids, and will never forget their joy and generosity--especially Puja, who kept bringing me candy and flowers from her home in the slums. So thankful for an once-in-a-lifetime trip with such an amazing group, and for the opportunity to fellowship with the most hardworking and servant-hearted Christians in the church in Kolkata.