How We Met
Chris and I both go to the same small college in Indiana, Taylor University. The summer before our freshman year, during freshman orientation, we were randomly put in the same orientation group. We had to do a bunch of ice-breaker games and awkward about-me games, but he made sure to always be my partner for them. We later found out that we both walked away from that orientation thinking about that cute guy/girl from our “O-Group.” When we reported to school, we had to take a freshman orientation class, and luckily, it was with our previously assigned “O-Group.” We started to hang out more and more during class, and did homework together outside of class. Slowly but surely we became friends, and that friendship turned into a relationship. We’ve been together for 2 years and 9 months since then and we’ve loved being able to go through college together!
how they asked
We are from the cornfields of Indiana, but Chris’ family has a home on a small island off of Charleston, SC. They have been going to South Carolina for Fourth of July week ever since he was in 3rd grade, and really any other opportunity they got to get away. I had been down there with them three times prior to the most recent, and although it is not hard to do because it’s so beautiful, I fell totally and completely in love with that island. My absolute favorite place down there is their long, wooden dock that goes out into the middle of the marsh.
The sunsets right over the bay in front of it and you can even hear the little crabs under the dock clicking their claws; it’s the type of setting you would see in a Nicholas Sparks movie! Chris is a very outdoorsy guy, and his family just recently bought two new paddle boards to use in the marsh canals, so he was SO excited to go out the first chance that we got. Little did I know, he wasn’t just excited to paddle board. We got in late on Friday night and went straight to sleep, but when we woke up in the morning, the plan was to go paddle boarding (again, he was so excited and I didn’t think anything of it because he loves stuff like that).
We were walking out on the dock and he was holding my hand while I chatted away, like usual. When we got to the end of the dock, I went over by the paddle boards and Chris was setting down his book bag (and apparently grabbing a ring)! He came over and hugged me and said, “Jess, I’m sorry, but we aren’t going paddle boarding today.” And then he went on to ask me to marry him and got down on one knee, while I stood there facing the love of my life, while on my favorite place on earth.
I can’t tell you much else from the dock because I was so shocked I don’t remember much.
While we were walking back (me, still freaking out), I saw a photographer on the dock and asked who it was, he said, “You’ll see.” When we got up to him I saw it was one of our best friends all the way from Chicago, he and his wife have their own photography business and do beautiful work, and I couldn’t believe they had flown all the way down there for the engagement, so I just started crying! When we got back to the house, his whole family was there and were so excited, but I was got sad because they wanted us to call my mom and I thought she wasn’t there. Then, my mom and dad suddenly popped out the room behind us! I had all of the people I loved there for the most special day.
The next morning, Josh and Alexa (our super talented, awesome photography duo friends) took us out to the beach for sunrise engagement photos. We got to spend the rest of vacation relaxing with family and friends, and then randomly freaking out when we were reminded that we are ENGAGED!