Stephen and Abby

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How we met

Stephen and I met when I was a sophomore and he was a senior in college. We were both in “Foundations of Education” together, the first class taken as an education major. We sat at the same table and would often work together on group projects. In October our class went on several school observations and Stephen and I would often try to carpool together. For one particular observation we spent the whole day wandering down school hallways, cafeterias and classrooms. Stephen and I went everywhere together, and we shared our love for students and education. We grew to see together how teaching can be a ministry, and how God’s love can be shown through teachers.

Image 2 of Abby and Stephen

The next week he asked me on our first date. Stephen and I were both new to the dating sphere. I was his first girlfriend and he was my first boyfriend. On our first date we went to Cracker Barrel and played checkers, then we later ventured to a local coffee shop called Java Primo. Stephen ordered a s’mores bar, which came complete with graham crackers, bananas, chocolate, marshmallows, and an open flame. Stephen was a little sick on our first date, so when he coughed into the flame and molten mallow it almost caught my hair on fire. We never left our little college town of Arkadelphia on our first date, but the date was almost 6 hours! About a week later we went on a second date, and on our third date in December he asked me to be his girlfriend!

how they asked

On Friday September 9th Stephen told me he was going to pick me up for a quick dinner at 6pm. He had been gone all day with work and I assumed we would just grab dinner and watch a movie. He drove out to Cracker Barrel, we played checkers, and then we went to Java Primo and ordered s’mores. This time my marshmallow caught on fire and I blew it in his face. Payback. We left Java Primo to head toward campus because “my dad needed his keys from his office in the education department.” At the time, my dad was serving as dean, so it wasn’t unusual to run up to his office and get something for him.

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We went to the education floor and to my surprise we found the classroom across the hall glowing with Christmas lights, our names on a chalkboard, and a table full of pictures and notes. The classroom was where we had Foundations of Education together.

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It was where we met, learned how much we both loved students, and grew to love one another. On the table was a box of notes Stephen and I had kept over the past year and a half of dating each other.

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There were some rough times where we struggled though life together and there were some joyous time where we celebrated together, and through all of it we learned to show unconditional love. When Stephen and I first started talking about getting engaged he didn’t have a job, so I mentioned that I would be okay if he proposed with a fruit loop instead.

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At the bottom of the box was a fruit loop, and my heart jumped for joy at the sight of it. Then, Stephen got down on one knee and proposed with a small, shiny, and beautifully crafted ring I like to call my fruit loop.

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