Lilli and Parker

how we met

How we met might be the most surprising part of our story looking back. After he graduated from Auburn University in building science, Parker chose to stay in Auburn and work at a local construction company. Around that same time, I was heading out for a semester abroad and therefore adding a year to my engineering curriculum at Auburn. That didn’t seem important at the time, but our both still being in Auburn for our meeting was quite the miracle. Through a new friend I met that spring, me and my roommate were convinced to join Bumble since, after all, that’s how she and all her roommates had met their boyfriends. We joined but never took it very seriously, never agreeing to dates and just testing the waters. Parker had had the app for a while, but of the few dates he went on, “not a single one actually looked like their pictures.” We matched, but I never thought much of it until he asked me to dinner. Apparently I had stopped replying for way too long (it was a very busy weekend) so he had decided to cut to the chase and ask me for my number as soon as I replied. I gave it to him and he asked if I’d like to get dinner sometime so I proposed that night, just 4 hours later, because I was free and why not? We met for dinner at a barbecue place a block from my apartment, and I ended up overcoming the surprise of my talkative nature by impressing him with wanting to stay for the end of the NCAA Championship game. My first impression was that he was very confident but humble, and I liked that he actually talked back. He liked that I was easy to talk to, and that I actually looked like my pictures. We caught on like a house on fire and did our best to see each other every day after that. Within a week, his phone was suggesting directions to my place as soon as he got off work.

how they asked

After a terrible flight experience in the fall, we had been given flight vouchers which I used to surprise him with a weekend in New York. He later turned this on me, saying it was his turn to surprise me with a trip and to not plan anything the last weekend of February. I was suspicious of everything for months before, as we went on nice dates and spent the holidays together skiing. Then in February, we got a puppy together, which I remembered I had once said would be an adorable way to propose. But still no ring. I had kept my nails done for months just in case so by the time our trip rolled around I was ready. Like I had done him before, he told me nothing of where we were going and hid the GPS from me. One long car ride later and he told me we were there as we pulled up to the yurt he had rented us on top of Lookout Mountain. The view was insanely gorgeous and I thought then that even if he proposed on the deck of the yurt I’d be impressed with his planning. But he had more in store. Knowing my love of hiking, he had a hike planned for us the next day at Cloudland Canyon State Park. We woke up the next morning to watch the sun rise over the miles and miles of view and then I got to work making sure I looked good, just in case. I put on makeup and curled my hair, even adding fake lashes, which I felt ridiculous for. We were just going hiking after all! It was chilly but the sun was warm as we headed out on a 5 mile loop that would take us by many a lookout point. He stopped and spent time at each one, not even realizing he was giving suspicious me a heart attack each time he did so. I enjoy videography as a hobby, even doing some weddings on the side, so he videoed us all day as we trekked. At the end of that hike, he proposed going down to the two waterfalls, which was a serious climb down some icy steps. Along the way I looked down and realized my hands were so swollen that I couldn’t even get my everyday rings off my fingers. At the first waterfall we put my hands in the freezing water hoping it would help, and he started massaging my fingers, paying special attention to the left hand. I wore a ring on my left ring finger at the time, so having that stuck on there was not the best. As we hiked back up the stairs I carried an icicle in each hand, knowing that if this was it then we might have a problem. Luckily by the time we reached Cherokee Falls, my fingers had remembered how to be their proper size. Knowing this might be it, I sat on a boulder and gave him some space while he set up his phone to record us walking around in front of the waterfall. He wanted us to walk away from the camera and stop and do a little pose in the clearing. Before we did so I stopped, kissed him, and told him I loved him. He says that that was when he realized I had probably guessed it but on we went. As we stopped in the clearing, he dropped to one knee, pulled out the ring, and said “I know you’ve been waiting for a while, and I know your fingers are really puffy right now, but Lilli will you marry me?” I’m convinced I partially blacked out because all I could say was “yes” and “I love you” for at least five minutes. To spite me thinking nobody knew when he was doing it, they actually were all in on it. He had planned a engagement party the next day for our families halfway between where they all lived and on the route home. My friends and family all admitted to barely making it through me saying he was “never going to propose” knowing what they knew and that they had found me very funny. We had talked about getting married in that fall, so the longer he waited the more I had wondered what he was up to. And whether he knew how much time it took to plan a wedding (spoiler: he didn’t). All in all, it was perfect. He even got my best friend to plan an engagement party for that next week for all our friends in Auburn and just made it so easy for me to just be there and not have to worry about a single thing.

Special Thanks

Lemon Salon
 | Hair Stylist
Nip and Tuck Florist
 | Floral Designer