Hannah and Joshua

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How We Met

Josh and I met while chaperoning a youth group event at Church of the Highlands. He boldly asked to sit next to me during worship, and I mumbled something like “Um, yeah, sure.” He is really handsome, so you’ll have to forgive my witty acceptance. We connected through social media, exchanged numbers, and started seeing each other as much as we could. For our first date, Josh took me to his grandfather’s lake house where the two of them cooked dinner for me. How could a girl NOT fall in love with a guy like that?

how they asked

Last October, we began approaching our “1000th day” of dating. Because I really love dates (like birthdays, holidays, sentimental goodness), I marked our calendars for October 22 and deemed it “Our 1000th day: the best day ever.” Little did I know, Josh was planning our engagement — and it would be THE best day ever.

Josh arranged for me to leave work early (yes- he thought of everything), have time to plan an outfit, and be ready in time for our surprise date. We drove to his grandfather’s lake house. Josh grew up on Lake Jordan, and is a master skier. I’ve always known that this lake house carries a special place in his heart, so being there for our date didn’t come as much of a shock. In fact, for our first date, Josh took me to this very house where he and his grandfather cooked dinner for me.

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We boarded the ski boat and sailed off to enjoy a beautiful sunset. (Pause- ladies, before we took off, Josh explained to me the best way to sit on the boat so that the wind wouldn’t mess up my hair. And we all said, “amen.”)

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Several minutes into our ride, Josh started acting different. He seemed much more quiet, and much more clumsy — which is odd for his “put together” exterior. Once arriving at his intended spot of perfection, Josh dropped the anchor, turned on my favorite childhood song (Kiss the Girl– the Little Mermaid), and asked me to dance.

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My heart started to beat a little faster, and my legs felt a little bit weaker. You know the moment when you think all of your dreams are finally coming true, but you’re still a bit of a realist, so you don’t let yourself get too excited just yet because being disappointed would be too hard? That was me.

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As if he couldn’t hardly stand it any longer, Joshua Keith Oates got down on his knee, looked at me in my now VERY tearful eyes and said, “I’ve been your boyfriend for 1000 days, and now I want to be your boyfriend for the rest of your life. Hannah Rebecca Chatham, will you marry me?”

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My mouth said “YES!” And my heart said “DUH” and “FINALLY” and “OH MY WORD” all at the same time.

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Once we arrived back to dock, Josh surprised me by having all of our family and friends waiting and cheering on our arrival.

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Again, my tear ducts continued to show off for everyone.

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October 22, 2015, You really were the best day ever.

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JKO, I’ll love you for the rest of my life.

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Special Thanks

Penni Lauren
 | Photography
Alea Bostic
 | Photography