Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Engagement Day:)!

The Story.
As most of you know, last Thursday June 11th is a day that changed my life. In a very good way:) I have been wanting to post this story for a while but as you can imagine, it has been a crazy, surreal, exciting, yet very tiring time. For the 3 days after Matt and i got engaged i could not get any sleep. Thursday just kept going over and over in my mind! So let me share just a bit of what i can't stop thinking about...

I normally have Thursdays off. It is a great day for me to catch up on things, eat lunch with friends and just get some time to myself. I woke up last Thursday morning feeling a little down actually. Wed afternoon i had a pretty intense encounter with road rage and it shook me up so much that i woke up thinking about it Thurs. morn. I will save that story for another day b/c it is a good one. So after spending some time with my sis before she went to work, i of course checked facebook. Blair (my good friend who lives in the Middle East) was online so we started chatting. we chat almost everyday but this day i decided to ask her, "do you know when i am getting engaged?" I told her that she did not have to tell me when but i just wondered if she knew if matt had a plan. ha! i'm seriously so impatient. So after getting NOTHING out of Blair, i sat down to do my Bible study. I am studying "beloved disciple" (by Beth Moore) with Mama Hopper and we are loving it! We were planning to meet at 2 in the afternoon at her house so we could watch the video. So i took my time getting ready thinking about all kinds of things, none of which would be the possibility that i would get engaged in just a few short hours!! 

Just a few minutes before it was time for me to leave to head to the Hopper home, i received a text from Mama Hopper. She asked me if i could meet her at a baby consignment store in mint hill to give my opinion on some things she had picked out for James and Blair, well baby Weddington actually. I told her that i could be there at 2 and asked her where it was. She said that it was across from the bank near Carolina Creamery. Carolina Creamery is an ice cream shop in Mint Hill and a special place to Matt and I. It was where we had our "DTR" (define the relationship) last summer after hanging out for a couple of weeks. We sat at a picnic table and talked for around 3 hours about everything... expectations, past experiences and just told stories from both of our times overseas. It was such a special night for us:) 

So i left and headed to this so called 'baby consignment store'. I was still not sure of it's exact location so i began to get in the left turn lane planning to turn the opposite direction of Carolina Creamery. As i was looking around though, my head turned to Carolina Creamy and i saw this sign on the picnic table....

I think my very first thought was, "that's my name" not thinking it was actually for me... but i soon realized that the sign was infact for ME! That was the moment i was pretty convinced that i would be getting engaged within the next few minutes and then i thought, "how did he surprise me?"!!! If you know me, you know that i am almost impossible to surprise. I can pick up on even the slightest change in behavior and i know it if anything is out of the norm. and i am always snooping.... i know, it's bad! But this time, Matt (and everyone else) got me good! I WAS SHOCKED!!:)

At this point i am still in the left turn lane and Carolina Creamery was to the right. So what did i do?? That's right, crossed over all the lanes to turn into Carolina Creamery. I mean, the sign was for ME!!!!??! I pulled in pretty quick and began to walk towards the table. At this point i see no Matt, just some sort of book laying on the table. So i sat down and began to read.

The book was an album/scrapbook that Matt had made for me. It was the story of our relationship starting with his first memories of me. Then it led to our service in the college ministry together, the trip we led to Ecuador together, my time overseas and then of course our relationship in the past year. For each part he included pieces of those memories like pictures, pieces of a t-shirt, emails, ticket stubs and lots of other creative things:) When i got towards the end of the book Matt came up behind me...
This was the point where i kinda started freaking out. He told me to keep reading and i said, "i can't!". but i settled and kept going:) When i got to the end, Matt told me not to turn the last page. He turned towards me and told me that he believed in us and the future of our relationship. Then he shared James 4:3 with me, which is sorta his life verse. It says, "you ask and do not receive because you ask wrongly to spend it on your passions". 

Then Matt shared with me that he wanted us to get joy from our relationship, but ultimately he wanted for us to ask of the things that would please the Lord and ultimately glorify Him. I love this boy i have:)! During our little moment a man in a truck drove up and said, "can i be the first to congratulate you??", to which we both replied.... "not yet!", haha.

He then told me to turn the last page of my album. When i turned the page, i saw a solitary polaroid picture of matt down on one knee holding out the ring and in the white part he had written, "will you marry me?". Four words that will change a girls life:) then, Matt asked me to stand up, got down on one knee and asked me to marry him right there. To which i screamed... YES!!!

Before he even got the chance to put the ring on my hand i was telling him how much i loved it and was taking it from him! haha. he had to tell me to let him put it on my hand.... geez, i'm such a girl! 

As you can tell, this whole encounter was documented. Not only on camera but also on film. Thank you so much Brian Quein!!! We will be showing this dvd to our children and grandchildren years from now:) 
After the engagement and all the freaking out, we decided to get some ice cream and of course i had to call everyone!!... 

Then we sat in the grass and let brian take some more pics of us. we got a little silly;)

And of course the pic that everyone has been waiting for (the girls at least)... the ring!! i love everything about it! matt did such a great job:)

The 2nd most popular question after, what is the ring like? is, when is the big day??... Matt and i will be getting married march 19th, 2010! yay!:) So i have 9 months to plan which is by far enough time but also kinda overwhelming. All of you seasoned brides out there, i would love your help and advice. :)

So that's the story... i am sure we will be telling it for years to come. I am so thankful for so many things throughout this process, but most of all for Matt and the fact that i get to marry him:) or should i say my fiance. wow. i am still not use to that!!! 

Love you all, thanks for being apart of this very special time!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


there are so many reasons i am excited about summer and one of them started sunday night. POPS in the Park!!:) POPS was something my friends and i did every summer, a few years back. there is an outside covering located right outside the embassy suites by southpark mall, and the charlotte symphony performs for about 2 hours starting at 8pm. hundreds of people from the charlotte area gather around in the grassy areas and bring blankets, chairs, coolers and anything else that may add to the fun. the memories of going every sunday night in june are so sweet. there were times that we had over 25 people and other times when there were just 4 of us, but it was always relaxing and fun! nothing can beat being outside on a blanket, in the summer, with the symphony in the background. if you have not been to POPS you should definitely try it. there are still 3 sunday nights left in june!

this past sunday matt and i went with the hoppers. they have been doing POPS forever! we went to eat at Pei Wei (the boys pronounced it Pee Wee and reminisced about old school Pee Wee movies) for a belated birthday celebration for Matt and then headed over to POPS. This was my first POPS expereince since arriving back in the states and it was pretty meaningful to share with with the hopper's. the people that first come to mind when i think of POPS is our close friends James and Blair (and they belong to mama and daddy Hopper). They are currently living in the ME right now and we missed them so much! Here is Blair's blog if you would like to check out their journey. 

I had my camera out the entire time b/c i was working on homework for my photography class. Thanks to Neal and Sherri for being such great subjects!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

my sister has graduated? i must be old.

this weekend we got to celebrate my sister's graduation from cosmetology school.  b/c amy went to a cosmetology school within a community college, she had the opportunity to 'walk'. it was something we all kinda joked about, but we were SO proud to see her walk across that stage. we sat in some of the closest possible seats and i sat in the aisle in order to get some shots of her. when everyone walked out and i saw her in her cap and gown my eyes got all teared up and i almost lost it! i am insane. 

this reminds me of the time that amy got jaw surgery. the nurses were about to bring her out of recovery and warned us that she would look a lot worse than she most likely felt. my mom had been an emotional wreck the whole day and i (if i am honest) was making fun of her for constant crying at the drop of a hat. well... when they did bring her out my mom ran to her, was talking, etc... and looked up wondering where i was. turns out i was in the corner SOBBING... i mean SOBBING. my mom never let me live that one down. 

nonetheless, i am so happy for my little sister and i think the fact that she can bring me to tears really means something. she is my best friend in the world and i love her so much:) 

here are a few shots from the day.

amy just took a job at Carmen Carmen in Ballantyne. if you ever have any hair needs feel free to call her:)!