How We Met
In Fall 2015, my friend Katie introduced me to her cousin Joey. She said that he was recently single and very tall (I am 5’ 11’’)! She sent my number to him and told him to text me. We started texting about typical things: college classes, things we enjoy doing and of course football. Joey attended Clemson University and I attended University of South Carolina- huge rivals. Luckily, I am not as diehard as he is! After several weeks of texting and talking on the phone, Joey asked me to be his date to his cousin’s wedding. I of course said yes but was somewhat nervous because we had a long drive to get to the wedding and that would be the first time we had spent together in person. On the day of the wedding he picked me up and we made the hour drive to the wedding. It was like we had known each other for forever. The ride was not awkward or nerve wracking, instead we had great conversations. I was very relieved! When we got to the wedding I was glad to know some people. We had a great time eating, drinking and socializing. Believe it or not we had such a good time I convinced Joey to come to Columbia the next weekend and he attended a University of South Carolina football game! From then on we have been to MANY more Clemson games, but we have happily been together since!
How They Asked
On May 18, 2018 Joey and I traveled to Biltmore for the second time. In the spring we had visited and had fallen in love with everything about the estate. We enjoyed our visit so much we bought yearly passes! Biltmore was a place we could come and truly relax and escape from our busy lives at home. With me being an elementary teacher and Joey a nurse at night, we work long hours. We were both very much looking forward to our weekend getaway! When we arrived on Friday, I had been complaining about never having time to get a manicure or pedicure anymore, so Joey treated me to time at the spa. I was surprised by his offer, but happily accepted time at the Biltmore Spa after a hectic week of teaching! Little to my knowledge, while I was getting pampered and relaxing Joey was doing just the opposite. He was frantically changing plans that he had been working on for months. Prior to our trip, Joey had arranged a carriage ride to a well known spot with a beautiful view of the Biltmore House. When we reached this spot he was going to propose. He even had a photographer lined up to capture it all! Well….when we arrived at the estate on Friday there had been very heavy rain and the river that runs through the estate was starting to flood. Joey was notified that the carriage ride had been cancelled. I now know that he received this phone call while we were at a rest area on the way up to the estate! While I was getting my manicure and pedicure Joey frantically drove to the carriage house. By this point, they knew exactly who he was due to his very detailed plans and many phone calls to verify everything would be perfect and just as he had planned! The workers at the estate felt so bad that they started to brainstorm and finally came up with an idea. They took him on ATV to a remote spot where horses were grazing. (This is not a public area and in fact has a very large sign that reads “No visitors beyond this point!”) When he saw the spot he knew it would work out great! It had an amazing view of the Biltmore Estate, arguably even better than the original spot! Joey took the photographer to the spot and they planned positions to get the best pictures possible! Soon, it was time for him to come back and pick me up from the spa. We decided to go back to the hotel and get ready to go explore and go to dinner. We spent the afternoon and night at the winery and ate a great dinner! When we woke up on Saturday morning, the royal wedding was on TV. I actually made Joey wake up with me at 5 am to start watching coverage (my grandmother is British). Little did I know I would planning a wedding soon. We watched the wedding and rested in our room with breakfast while it misted rain outside. Finally, we decided to get up and get dressed. I started putting on gym shorts, a t-shirt and tennis shoes and threw my hair into a bun. It was raining out and I was not going to go through the work of getting ready to get then soaked with rain! It took a lot of convincing by Joey and a promise of a nice lunch to get me changed into nicer clothing and put on makeup! While I was getting ready, Joey was pacing and leaving the room frequently. I did not think much of it, as he cannot sit still ever (all of our friends can attest to that). All of a sudden, he seemed very rushed. Little did I know the rain was about to come down so Joey had talked with the photographer and gotten everything ready. This was three hours earlier than planned! We raced through the road on the estate! I was actually getting nervous and asked Joey to slow down several times. He then quickly pulled off on a side road where the large sign read “No Visitors Beyond this Point.” Anyone that knows me well can attest to the fact that I am a rule follower. I did not want to walk through this gate even though it was open. I asked Joey multiple times was it okay and he kept reassuring me saying “The gate is open Summer. Let’s just see what is up here.” I reluctantly agreed to walk the path. I struggled up the path in sandals, as it was muddy from the morning rain. As we made our way up a small hill I saw a man in the distance. Joey quickly reassurance me that it was fine to be there because “see there is a photographer up here taking pictures of the house.” As he said that, the house came into view and I was amazed. We kept walking forward but I could not take my eyes off of the view. Suddenly I felt a tug on my hand and Joey was dropping to his knee. I was in shock. I think I asked him “Are you serious?” five times before I even said yes!
After the proposal, and a series of pictures by our amazing photographer Will, we went up to The Inn to celebrate! We sat on the porch and enjoyed time together. Joey told me we had reservations at The Inn for dinner that night. I was looking forward to the very nice meal with my new Fiance. As we sat on the balcony we happily called as many family members as we could think of! The only people I could not get in touch with were my parents! Finally, after multiple phone calls, my mom answered and we told my parents! They said they knew it was happening and they were so excited and couldn’t wait to see us when we got home. After talking to family and sharing our news we went down to our hotel to get changed for dinner. When we arrived back at The Inn we started to walk around until our table was ready. As we walked down a long hallway I tried to convince Joey to go back out the balcony we had sat on earlier in the day. He kept saying “just come this way.” We rounded a corner and there stood my parents and Joey’s parents. I was in shock! I could not believe he had actually brought them all there! It was such a thoughtful and caring gesture! My mom shared with me that she was not answering because she was nervous and did not know what to say since they were driving up. She cannot keep a secret very well! We happily got to enjoy dinner and celebrate together that night! Having our parents there definitely made the day even more special!
The ring was beautiful, the planning was thoughtful and detailed, but the best thing of all is getting to spend the rest of my life with such a thoughtful and amazing man!