Collin and Miranda

Image 6 of Collin and Miranda

How We Met

Miranda and I met when we were 11 years old playing the trumpet. Through junior high and high school, we became best friends.

After 5 years of friendship, I asked Miranda to be my girlfriend at the high school dance after the first football game of our sophomore year. Ironically, the dance was named the “First Chance Dance” and after a fun night of dancing in the school gym with our friends, I asked her to be my girlfriend. From high school dances to going off to college, and to start our careers, we have grown up and fallen more in love.

How They Asked

Taking off work, having a picnic at Griffiths Observatory, and then ending the day at Los Angeles County Arboretum was our plan.

Little did my girlfriend, Miranda, know there was a bigger plan at play. The ring was secretly hidden in my car door which I would later put in my jacket pocket. We had picked up Cava, one of my favorite Mediterranean restaurants, on the way to the observatory. We had an awesome time at the observatory and, (thanks Covid), the place was practically empty!

Image 1 of Collin and Miranda

Once we were finished, we packed up and made our way to the Arboretum. About a week prior, I had snuck over the Arboretum with Miranda’s mom, Stacey, and our photographer, Amy. (Planning is key when you have a girlfriend who can sniff out a plan from a mile away!) We found a few places for photos and Amy suggested locations where the lighting would be ideal. Erick, my friend, also tagged along. I decided to practice my proposal on him. It worked, he said yes, building up my confidence for when I asked Miranda!

Image 5 of Collin and Miranda

The Arboretum was crawling with people and peacocks! We hoped the people, or peacocks, would not get in the way during the proposal. We came up with a game plan to make sure the timing was right when Miranda and I entered the Arboretum. Then the plan was set.

Once Miranda and I arrived, I transferred the ring from my car to my jacket pocket trying to be as sneaky as possible. The people at the gate gave me a knowing glance as I had called them ahead of time to arrange the engagement. We walked up to a map and deliberated which path we would take around the park. My original plan was to go to the right, then loop around to the left where the proposal would be. Those plans were thrown for a loop when the map said we should go to the left if we were first-time visitors to the Arboretum. I tried to convince Miranda that we should go to the right but she ultimately decided we would go to the left.

Image 4 of Collin and Miranda

After some stalling on my part, we made it to the waterfall on schedule. We took a selfie and I texted Amy to signal we were 5 minutes out. We walked up a staircase to the left of the waterfall and made our ascent to the proposal site. We worked our way to the proposal site which was a pond above the waterfall. We stopped for a moment to look at the waterfall. I began to get nervous so I took a deep breath and said to myself, “Here is the beginning of forever”.

Image 3 of Collin and Miranda

We walked closer to the pond and I suggested we take a selfie. That selfie was the signal to my photographer that the proposal was about to go down. We took our masks off and took a selfie. The large red box made its way out of my pocket and I took a knee. I said a lot while I was on my knee, most of it I do not remember, but I ended with “I hope we can spend the rest of our lives together, will you marry me?”

I opened the box.

Miranda responded with a resounding “Yes!”

During the proposal, Amy, our photographer, popped out of the bushes behind us and the shutter began clicking. Stacey, Miranda’s mom, popped out as well, while excitedly videoing.

Image 2 of Collin and Miranda

We had a small photo session with Amy, after the proposal. Amy talked us through some fun poses and was great to work with. I invited our parents to join us afterward, which was a surprise to Miranda and we ended up getting some great photos!

It was the beginning of our two families coming together.

Image 7 of Collin and Miranda

Special Thanks

Amy Flammang Photography
 | Photographer
Stacey Fifield
 | Planning
James Allen
 | Ring