Gina and Hunter Cummings

Gina and Hunter, both 33, met through their church youth group in Whitehouse, Tenn. Both 16, Gina was instantly drawn to his outgoing personality, while Hunter was intrigued by her sweet but quiet nature. They became high school sweethearts and were a couple throughout college. They married July 16, 2005, in the same church where they met. Together with their Yorkie-Poo, Simon, they moved to Charlotte in 2010. Gina tells their story.

First impressions: My family had just joined the church when I saw Hunter for the first time in Sunday school. I immediately thought he was cute, but when he turned out to be funny and outgoing as well, I fell in love with his personality. We were officially introduced for the first time at a Tuesday night devotional in the front yard of our youth minister’s house. We agreed to go on a date that weekend.

Young love: Hunter picked me up in what was known as “Big Blue,” the old blue and white Ford truck he drove back then. We had dinner at Olive Garden – still one of my favorite places – and went to see the Michelle Pfieffer and George Clooney movie, “One Fine Day.” We weren’t too impressed with it, but Hunter was fun to be around. So we joke that it was still “one fine date.”

The saying goes: Hunter and I dated nearly 10 years and will celebrate our ninth wedding anniversary in July. During that time, we’ve learned that communication is vital. (After all this time, we’ve only had one major disagreement, and it was because we didn’t communicate.) We’ve been together more than half our lives, so I guess the old saying holds true: The longer you’re together, the stronger your love for one another becomes. Hilary Trenda


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