Hannah and Tyler
How We Met
Tyler and I met in the summer of 2017 while serving at a Christian summer camp called FUGE Camps in Charleston, South Carolina. I remember that Tyler was one of the last staffers to arrive at Charleston Southern University on May 28th. When he walked into the lobby of the Russell West dorm where we were all waiting for his arrival, I remember thinking that he was the cutest boy I had ever seen, and then immediately felt embarrassed when I realized I was wearing crocs and pizza socks. Despite my wacky outfit, he still sat next to me during our first night of staff training and the rest is history.
During that summer we were able to form a great friendship built upon our individual desires to serve the Lord and the city of Charleston. I loved being able to watch Tyler go out of his way to have intentional conversations with students, encourage our staff, and serve in a way that reflected his love for Christ.
As the summer was winding down, we both started thinking about what life after camp looked like. For Tyler, the first thing he had to do after camp ended was drive the camp rental van back to LifeWay’s office in Nashville, Tennessee. He threw out a casual invitation to our staff to join him on this road trip and I ended up being the only person to take him up on it. So on July 23rd after we said goodbye to the friends we made during the summer, we embarked on the 8-hour drive to Tennessee. Luckily the drive flew by because we had each other on speaker phone the whole time! We made it to Nashville that night where we were greeted by members of Tyler’s family who graciously allowed us to stay with them.
The next day while we were driving through a car wash in the camp rental van, we finally had the “so are we gonna date” talk. If you know anything about Tyler and I, you can safely assume that conversation was a little awkward but we drove out of the car wash with plans to go on our first date the next night.
On July 25th Tyler and I went on our first date to a Chicago-style pizza place and by the end of the night, we decided we wanted to keep on dating each other! We knew that pursuing a long-distance relationship was going to be difficult but we also knew that we liked each other way too much to not give it a try!
Over the next year, we fell quickly in love even while we were 950 miles apart. Tyler’s trips up to Boone, North Carolina, and my trips down to Alexandria, Louisiana, and every stop we made in between were filled with tons of laughs, cups of coffee, and trips to Waffle House. Those fun adventures inspired our Instagram hashtag #DatesAcrossStates that first started out as just a joke but quickly turned into a cute way for us to document all of the places our relationship has taken us!
how they asked
On the morning of July 24th, 2018 my mom woke me up and surprised me with a large envelope that had a letter from Tyler in it and several other small sealed envelopes with instructions on the front of them. Inside the first letter was a plane ticket to Nashville for that night and a note from Tyler saying that he would see me soon to celebrate our dating anniversary. He also told me not to open the other envelopes until it was the time written on them and that they would explain what was going on. My mom then took us to have a girls morning before my flight which included coffee and getting our nails done!
That night I arrived at the airport in Raleigh and was able to open some of the sealed letters in the terminal and on the plane. The letters were sweet notes of encouragement and love from several friends and family members including my best friend Teva, my parents, and his parents. Once my flight landed in Nashville I opened a letter from my camp best friend Stacey saying that she was there to pick me up at the airport! Stacey and I spent the night catching up on the summers of camp we had just worked and how excited she was for Tyler and I to celebrate a year of dating.
The next morning I woke up to a note from Tyler saying that today was the day we had both been eagerly anticipating, he was going to ask me to marry him. I couldn’t contain my excitement in knowing that by the end of that day I would be engaged to my absolute best friend! I also got to read a note from my sweet friend Shelby congratulating us on this big milestone and encouraging us to enjoy every moment of this special day! Stacey and I spent our morning enjoying some of our favorite cute spots in Nashville followed by a trip to The Dry House salon to get our hair done for the night. We then went back to where we were staying to do our makeup and get dressed up for the big night.
We got in the car and went on what I felt like was the longest drive ever. I couldn’t wait to finally see T! We finally arrived at Percy Warren Park where I could see Tyler standing on a staircase with a box in his hand. I wanted to sprint up to see him but the large steps and my high heels prevented me from doing that! When I eventually met him at the top of the stairs, I honestly don’t remember anything he said because I was so overjoyed at the fact that the best man I had ever met really wanted to spend forever with me. The next thing I knew he was down on one knee and sliding the prettiest ring on my finger after I said yes!
We were then joined by Stacey, Tyler’s aunt Toya, and cousin Carrie who had been taking pictures the entire time. We celebrated in the park and then continued celebrating with dinner at Woolworth’s. One of the best parts of the night was Tyler realizing that he ripped his pants when he got down on one knee but we were too excited to even notice until we were on our way to dinner!
We can’t wait to enjoy this exciting season of engagement and look forward to spending a life together as husband and wife!