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Pack light so you'll have to keep each other warm

Updated: Jul 7, 2023

So there we were...


Our story truly began on date #3, when Matthew thought it would be a good idea to see if Shanon would meet him in the middle of the southern California desert for an overnight camping trip. To his luck, she not only showed up on time at the coordinates he sent her, but she had brought a full pack, hiking boots, and most importantly: a sandwich to share.

The hike to the campsite itself took an hour and a half of navigating via a hand-drawn map that a toothless man had given them, and not only included rolling hills, but also required them to wade through waist-deep freezing cold water, and befriend a crew of starving nudists attempting to trek the Pacific Crest Trail. To Matthew's surprise, Shanon never complained once, and trucked along with no problem.


Matthew thought this would be enough to last a whole night...


Matthew, being the planner that he is, packed fairly light, and convinced Shanon that her sleeping bag would be too bulky to lug to the campsite. This left us with 1 hammock, 1 small tarp, and 2 throw blankets.


As the night went on, the temperature dropped, as it tends to do so when the sun sets in the desert. We had no choice but to become two peas in a pod and huddle in the hammock. We quickly figured out that regardless of how we configured themselves, the tarp, and the blankets, that there would always be a 1-inch gap that would let the cold night air in.


By this point, Matthew was convinced that Shanon would be gone with the wind, and nothing but a fond memory by daylight. Shanon, having previously slept holding only her rifle in Annapolis in November years ago, knew that at least Matthew's body heat was better than cold metal, and that the sun would rise again the next day.


The next morning, Matthew thought that it was going to be the last time he'd ever see Shanon again. To his surprise, he did in fact see her again, which is how he knew immediately that this woman was different - and that he had to "lock it down" quick.


It took a while, but we finally have a more manageable camping setup


From that date on, we have been inseparable. Our shenanigans have covered everything from figuring out how to "win Vegas" by hopping fences and hitchhiking at EDC, catching catfish with Matthew's side of the family in Texas, taking Shanon's parents out two steppin' in Temecula, skydiving, taking aerial silks classes, cowboy action shooting, and much much more.

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Although our story and our shenanigans are fun, our core values, our love and respect for our families, and our deepest passions, are what connects us most with one another. As a Navy veteran who went through a rough transition, Shanon has been building her career in helping servicemembers learn how to market themselves and communicate their stories to civilian employers. Most recently, she led veteran hiring programs at Google. She currently mentors members of the military community in what little free time she has to ensure others' are better equipped than she was to write the next chapters of their lives. Matthew is nearing the end of his career as an active duty Marine, and is relentlessly working with Shanon at his 6 to build Mavin's Landing - self-sustained, obtainable, tiny home communities for active duty servicemembers, transitioning veterans, and their families to help solve the housing crisis. The two of us have already begun merging our worlds together to figure out the best way to serve those who have sacrificed their lives so others can sleep more soundly at night.


From desert debauchery to home on the range, whether it's in onesies or wranglers, we always find our bullseye - each other.


Hop and and hold on, we've only just begun.


'Till the next coffee shop

S&M

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