Rachel and Josh

Image 1 of Josh and Rachel

How We Met

Josh: Rachel and I first met at Penn State University through mutual friends. Our first date was a hayride, which is a yearly dated function at Penn State. Our relationship is special because we both have an appetite for adventure. Whether it’s traveling or taking on the unknown, we both have a desire to live life to the fullest. After college, we moved out to California together which was a huge move for both our lives and our relationship. We also share interests in yoga, traveling, and photography. I knew she was the one after we moved to California together. After going through college and growing up into adults, we had made a lot of life transitions together and our love was stronger than ever.

Rachel: Josh and I both grew up in small towns outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Although attending adjacent high schools, it wasn’t until college where we would meet (although we would later find out we crossed paths not once, but twice! in high school). As my parents drove away from my Penn State dorm, a rush of emotions overcame me, “I can’t believe I’m finally here! Where is my first class? I know no one here!”. Luckily early into my freshmen year, those small-town mutual friends introduced me to my future Fiance. Somewhere between making new friends, studying, and maximizing our meal plan cards, we lost touch. Those new college friends we were busy making freshmen year would eventually lead us to each other again later in college. Every year, students at Penn State attend a dated function, Hayride, where a tractor drives you into what seems like a middle-of-no-where Pennsylvania.

Little did I know that during our Junior year, this event would end up being our first date and best Hayride of our college experiences! We spent the night around the bonfire laughing with friends and seeing who could eat the most smores. In an attempt to impress Josh, I named every constellation in the night sky (I was making these up — which I later found out he was fully aware of! :P). We spent the next two years of college together. We moved to DC one summer for internships and even experienced Europe for the first time together. Shortly after graduation, we decided to continue fulfilling our lives of adventure. We packed as much as we could into five suitcases and jetted off for San Francisco! The next four years flew by. We spent them building the foundation for our lives together. We challenged each other to take every opportunity that came our way. We soaked in every moment that was unpredictable, scary, and utterly perfect — together. Shortly after we moved to California, I knew Josh was the one.

how they asked

Josh: I told Rachel that we had plans on Saturday and we were going on a short walk followed by a picnic. We took a short walk down Lover’s Lane in the Presidio, and I told her to close her eyes and count to 10. I then got down on one knee and asked her to marry me. It was a surprise, although we had talked about it for a while. The planning process went on for about 2 months, I talked to both of our parents and researched rings, locations, and photographers. We are extremely excited to start planning the wedding. We are going back and forth between having it in California or Pittsburgh, PA where we both grew up.

Image 2 of Josh and Rachel

Rachel: Let me start by saying, our lives are completely intertwined. We know every daily interaction and emotion that occurs in one another’s life. We had talked about marriage on multiple occasions and it was inevitable that this day would come. I was confident that I would 100% know when Josh was going to propose — our lives are so intertwined how could I not know (2 months of secret planning I found out)! Of course, Josh knew how much I loved having everything mapped out, and he did everything in his power to make this day a surprise for me. Josh told me had planned a special day for us before we were to travel back to Pittsburgh for Christmas. He had a picnic planned for the afternoon and dinner at one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants in the evening. Before the picnic, Josh wanted to show me an art installation in the Presidio (a wooded public park here in San Francisco), so we traveled down what I would soon find out is called Lover’s Lane.

Image 3 of Josh and Rachel

I thought to myself, “Is Josh proposing? Why am I dressed up in the woods?!”. These thoughts quickly subsided as I saw a sign for coyotes. Coyotes! Josh quickly directed my attention to the art installation, and as we traveled down Lover’s Lane he turned to me and told me he had a surprise. This was it! No amount of planning can ever prepare you for that one moment. When I opened my eyes, there was the small town boy living a life of adventure with me down on one knee. It was a moment I had played out a million times in my mind, but one I was never fully prepared for. The moment was filled with emotion, joy, and pure happiness. After 6 years and one short walk later, Josh asked me the easiest question I’ve ever had to answer.

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Special Thanks

Ian Chin Photography
 | Photographer