How We Met
Jackson and I met while working on a game day staff for the Atlanta Braves! We didn’t get close until the 2nd year on staff when we were supervisors and spent more time together. We started talking and texting more and one night we went out in Athens with our coworkers, Jackson told me he had feelings for me. I was shocked and made him tell me again the next morning just to be sure he was serious! About a week later I went to the beach with his family and we were inseparable after that. We dated secretly for about 4 months until the end of baseball season and then took our relationship Publix. Since then we have traveled a ton, made some awesome memories and have really become each other’s “person”.
how they asked
Our proposal was a complete surprise. We got engaged on November 4th and my birthday is November 6th. Jackson told me we were going somewhere in the afternoon but I started my day with brunch and getting my nails done with my sister and mom (how convenient). When we got done they brought me home and Jackson and I left. I had no idea where we were going until the GPS told us to continue on for 80 miles and I realized we were leaving the state of Georgia. I tried to guess all the way there what we would be doing but had no idea. We finally got to our destination and Jackson told me that we were there for “The Lights” festival. If you’re unfamiliar, it’s a paper lantern festival where hundreds of people release paper lanterns at the same time into the night sky. It’s incredible. We got there early so we listened to the bands and ate some dinner while waiting for it to get dark. I wrote different things on my lantern and drew pictures with the markers the festival provides and Jackson wrote “Jackson loves Danielle” on his.
About 30 minutes before the lights were set to go off Jackson encouraged me to go to the bathroom. I was a little put off but figured I might as well. While I was gone he asked a random couple next to us to take our picture because he was planning to propose and they had a nice camera. When it was time to do the lights, we set mine up and started to light it. As it filled with air we were in awe of all the lights being released. Once mine was in the air Jackson took my hands and said “Danielle, we aren’t just here for your birthday, we’re here for something else too.” He pulled out his lantern and on the top it said “Will you marry me?”
My first response was “is this a joke?” because I couldn’t believe it was happening and was so confused on when he would’ve talked to my dad or bought a ring without me knowing. We lit Jackson’s lantern and he got done on one knee and gave me the most gorgeous ring ever. I of course said yes and we celebrated the moment and really just took it all in.
It took us about 2 and a half hours to get back home and when we walked into our apartment I was surprised by my entire family (including my brother and his girlfriend who came home from college to surprise me), Jacksons’s family and my college roommate/best friend. They had decorated the whole apartment and had champagne and gifts waiting. I had no idea Jackson had coordinated so much stuff. The whole night was so amazing and it still feels like a fairytale.