Abbey and Garrett

How We Met

I remember the day like it was yesterday, June 28, 2014, my girlfriends and I went to a local bar to share a few drinks and a lot of laughs. At the time, I wasn’t looking for a relationship – So it wasn’t until Garrett approached me at the end of the night that I noticed him. But boy did I notice him!! His eyes were unlike anyone’s I’d ever seen, the most incredible shade of golden brown and his sweet smile took my breath away. Garrett politely introduced himself and asked if he could buy me a drink – I kindly denied his offer, but instantly regretted it the second he walked away. Fast forward to the end of the night, it was almost last call and my friends and I were getting ready to head home, when a very rude (& drunk) man called me some nasty names because I wouldn’t take a shot with him. Little did I know that Garrett was heading back to the bar to close his tab and heard the man’s comments to me – He instantly stepped in and I was so grateful that he took the time to intervene and defuse the situation for me.

Abbey's Proposal in Washington, D.C.

You can say he was like my knight in shining armor!! (Yes, I know I’m corny) But all joking aside, that’s exactly how I felt at the time. After that night, I couldn’t seem to get Garrett off my mind – thank goodness for social media!! I found Garrett on Facebook and after about two weeks, I got the courage to send him a request and message. We talked back and forth for weeks and even hung out a few times with some friends. Both being caught up with work and other obligations, we lost touch for maybe two weeks or so. When one night my friend and I showed up at the same bar that Garrett and I first met at, we walked in and sat down at the bar – a few minutes later, Garrett came walking out of the bathroom and came over to our seats looking a bit shocked… Can you believe that I sat down in the exact seat he was in before going to the restroom! Talk about fate!! The rest is pretty much history after that night – we gave birth to our beautiful daughter Charlotte Grace on October 7, 2015 and now we’re engaged!!

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Washington, D.C.

How He Asked

Garrett and I had been talking for a while about getting engaged, we even looked at rings when I was pregnant and picked out one we loved!! However, with everyday life and having a new family we financially weren’t in a place to make it happen. I decided to surprise Garrett with a trip to Washington, D.C. to view monuments and go to Joe Rogan’s live comedy show (Garrett is a huge fan!) for his early birthday present and to celebrate our three year anniversary. Our drive to D.C. was perfect – we made it there in the early afternoon and spent the next few hours visiting monuments before heading to our hotel to get ready for dinner. I’ve always been a believer in fate, so when the hotel attendant handed me our room key #904 (our anniversary date, September 4) I knew this trip was meant to be!! After a delicious dinner at the District Chophouse, Garrett insisted we go to the Lincoln Memorial to see the sunset. Everyone asks me if I expected him to propose, and even though I thought I’d for sure catch on when that moment came, I had no clue! I was convinced that there was no possibility for us to get engaged that weekend. When we arrived at the memorial Garrett asked if I would like to go down to the reflecting pool to take some photos (anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE pictures!) so I course wanted to document every second of our trip.

Standing at the pool, taking in the incredible view of the Washington Monument. Garrett proceeded to tell me how special this trip was for him and just how much he loved me — he then took both of my hands, looked me in the eyes and said “you always say that actions speak louder than words, so today I’m going to prove my love to you” — it wasn’t until that moment that I’d caught on.. my eyes welled up with tears as Garrett got down on one knee, pulling a ring box from his boot. I’ll never forget those words “Abbey Hoetzlein, will you marry me?” – I spit out an emotional “YES, of course!!” and finally get my first look at the ring.

It was breath taking! And the best part is, he didn’t get the one we picked out. Garrett found a ring that he knew I’d love much more and he was right! Garrett slid the ring on my finger and we hugged for what felt like forever, the crowd cheering and clapping. Garrett then asked if I would like to take some pictures, I said “of course!!”, he then pointed at a woman holding a camera and said “that’s Rachel, she’s going to take our photos”. I burst in the tears, in complete shock! I never in a million years thought he would hire a photographer… but he did and it exceeded every expectation of what I hoped a proposal would be! I’m the luckiest girl in the world to get to spend the rest of my life with him!

Special Thanks