Jade and Justin

Image 1 of Jade and Justin

how we met

Jade: Justin and I met through a mutual friend that I worked with and also happened to live with Justin. Their house was always the place to be for a party or any kind of social gathering. I was invited to a party at their house and since I didn’t know many people I brought my friend Ashley with me. This is the night I met Justin. We spent the entire night talking and getting to know each other. As cheesy as it may sound, it was love at first sight for me! My friend, Ashley and I left the party and I will always remember looking at her and saying, “Justin is going to be my boyfriend, just wait and see!” A few months later, I was right! Now four years later we are planning a wedding!

Image 2 of Jade and Justin

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how they asked

Justin: If you know Jade, you know how important her family is to her. When I was thinking of the perfect place to propose, I immediately thought of what we call the “Spence Clubhouse” that is on a few acres of her dad’s property in southeast Georgia. This location overlooking the pond has housed just about every kind of celebration and I knew that when the right time came, I wanted this place to have one more reason to have a celebration. I wanted this proposal to be as much of a surprise to Jade as possible so rather than ring shopping together, I did some research. Picking out the ring was actually the least stressful part of the whole process. After scrolling through her Pinterest page a few hundred times, I had a pretty good idea of what I was looking for. The first place I went to was Bernard’s Jewelers in Statesboro. I saw a few rings I liked but one really stood out. I decided to sleep on it and visit a few other stores, but I couldn’t get the first ring out of my mind.

Fast forward a few days later, I had gotten to one of the most stressful weeks of my life! It all started on Monday morning the week before I proposed. After thinking all weekend and working up the guts to ask Jade’s dad for permission, I called him Monday morning and told him I needed to talk to him later in the afternoon about something going on with my house. I hated to start this important conversation with a lie, but I wanted to make sure it happened in person. Later after work, I met Jade’s dad and we went to his office to have “the talk”. We sat down and I let it all out. I told him how much I loved his daughter and how much I wanted her to become part of my family and how I would love to become part of her family. With both of us almost in tears, he said he couldn’t be more excited for me to marry his only daughter. The conversation ended with a hug and I thought the tough part was over. After speaking with Jade’s dad, I knew it was also very important to talk to her mom. The first conversation went so well I decided to go with the same gameplay. I called her mom earlier in the day and asked if she was going to be at work later on so we could talk about something. When I got to the church where her mom works, we went to a quiet room and sat down to talk. I just came out with it. I told her that I wanted to marry her daughter and wanted to spend the rest of my life with Jade. Her mom, Wendy, had the biggest smile on her face and once again, the tears flowed. She gave me her blessing and welcomed me to the family.

Over the next few days, I had to work out all of the final details to the proposal.Thankfully I had a great team of vendors that helped make everything perfect.The day finally arrived that I was going to propose… only it started at about 1am with a trip to the hospital the night before as Jade began to feel very sick. Now, this isn’t the first time Jade’s felt sick over the last month. Earlier this month, Jade had to spend a few days in the hospital. At this point I just wanted Jade to feel better but I was also disappointed knowing that all of my plans were about to be changed. Thankfully whatever the doctors prescribed made her feel so much better. Under the guise of a dinner with my boss, Jade decided she wanted to go shopping to find something nice to wear that night. We went to a local boutique, and together we picked out her new dress. As Jade got ready, I confirmed plans with our photographer, who is also Jade’s sister, and was assured everything was ready to go! We got in the car and as we went in the opposite direction of the fake dinner plans, I told Jade I may not have been completely truthful about having dinner with my boss that night. I opened the door for her and took her hand.

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We walked to the covered dock that was beautifully decorated with flowers, a hand lettered “Marry Me” sign, lights, wine, and candles. You could hear the shutter clicking on the camera and Jade started to cry.

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That’s when I asked the love of my life to marry me! After this, we spent time taking pictures and just enjoying the moment. Afterward I told her there was another surprise. We were having dinner at her dad’s house and both of our families would be there to celebrate! It was a perfect ending to an emotional day.

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If you’re planning to propose, get a few good wingmen. I couldn’t have done it without the help from her family. I had help planning the dinner, helping decorate, and even taking the photos. I knew I could trust these people to keep it a secret and they were all very excited to be included in the planning.

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Jade: I knew that Justin was the one from the first day I met him. It truly was love at first sight. Since we moved in together a few months ago, the conversation of marriage came up a lot, but I knew that it wouldn’t be anytime soon. I was completely surprised when we pulled up to my dad’s clubhouse! Justin jumped out of the car and grabbed my hand. Once I saw the beautiful decorations I knew that my best friend and the love of my life was not my boyfriend any more, he was my fiancé!!! It could not have been a more perfect proposal. I cannot wait to start planning our wedding for next September!

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Special Thanks

Jill Doty Photography
 | Photographer