Conner and Mackenzie
How we met: I met Conner in high school when I was a sophomore and he was a junior. Our town is tiny, so we always knew each others family and who each other was but never actually considered pursuing each other. That was until we were set up on a low-key soccer pick-a-date I guess you could call it. We both had played soccer at the time and in the fall the guys soccer team would plan a fun night of games and food and best of all, a surprise date! Each male soccer player chose another guys name and whoever they picked they had to find them a date. The girls in the school knew what was going on so we all wanted to go and when one of my guy friends asked me to go with Conner, I was immediately nervous. But the night went great and I can distinctly remember Conner wearing a white shirt and falling into a huge mud puddle which he used ashis way of talking to me again the next day, telling me the stain came out! We continued talking, met each others families, which we each fit into so well, and soon enough we were dating, then graduating, then heading off to college where somehow I always ended up following his footsteps.
How he asked: This last summer we had gone ring shopping, more for fun than anything. We had always talked about the possibility of marrying each other but in October we were in a wedding together and after that something just clicked and we both knew we wanted to marry each other, and did not feel the need to wait any longer. I had known Conner had the ring and my only wish was that I would be surprised whenever he proposed. I had been waiting about a month and bugged him pretty much everyday that he didn’t propose to me. :) He had a friend visiting from out-of-town and they had planned to have breakfast at 7:45am on Tuesday, December 23. But on Tuesday, I got a call at 7:45 and Conner tells me we are having breakfast together, he’ll pick me up at 9am and I have to dress, in his words “kind of nice”. My thoughts were everywhere that next hour. What about his friend? Either this is a really mean joke or he is proposing to me today. Luckily a proposal is what came. I’m not a morning person but on this morning I was able to pop right out of bed. I had dreamed about this day for so long and I was trying very hard to not get too excited in case he really was just making me breakfast.
So 9am rolled around and he picked me up and we drove to his house, which is conveniently right across the street. We walked in and it was very quiet, light music in the background, candles lit, and he led me to the table where I found a letter, rose and ring box set perfectly together. I cried right away, which I am not a crier by any means. He told me to read the letter, which looking back at it I read it but had no idea what it said. Once I was done, I set it down and he was on one knee asking me to marry him. YES! The whole time we were being photographed by his cousin, and our already booked wedding photographer (I may have already been planning the wedding before I was engaged). We celebrated with mimosas, and he made breakfast, which I was too excited and shocked to eat. Who wants to eat when you could look at a pretty diamond on your finger? We called our families and grandparents to let them know the exciting news.
After breakfast, Conner tells me I have a manicure and pedicure scheduled at 10am. The car ride there I’m thinking of all the friends I need to tell and planning out my day. I’m a planner, but little did I know Conner had this whole day planned out for me. We got to the salon and out pops my high school best friends and Abbey the photographer capturing it all. My new fiancé leaves and there I am getting spoiled and pampered with my friends, who took off work just to be with me. I try to get out of them if they know what’s going on, or what’s happening next and they just smile. As I finished up at the salon, I get an envelope handed to me saying I can use this gift card to buy myself a nice dress and to be ready at 4:30pm for dinner.
So off to bfearless, a local boutique, I go. I walk in and everyone working knows that I just got engaged and they give me hugs and lead me to the fitting room where they “picked out some dresses” ahead of time for me. By now I kind of suspected another surprise and out pop my two best college friends from Michigan and Chicago who made the long drive that morning. I was SO happy!! And of course, Abbey was there again being my paparazzi and capturing every surprise. Not only did I have my friends from home with me, I had my college friends that I never thought would drive all that way just to celebrate with me. So now we shopped, and if you know me, you know I love to shop, so I was in heaven with friends, a diamond and shopping all in one day. I found the perfect little black dress and jewelry to go with it.
Then I headed home with all my friends and we got to hang out for a while before I got ready. When we walked into my room, Conner made sure we had everything we needed, roses, champagne, and my favorite snacks. When 4:30 rolled around Conner came to pick me up and off we went to dinner. The whole ride up we doted on my ring and I tried to think of what his friend and my friends would do the whole time I was gone. He told me not to worry and that’s exactly what I did. We got to the restaurant and walk in and the hostess tells us part of our party is already here. I look and Conner, not knowing other people would be having dinner with us and he gives me no clue what is going on with his facial expression. So I just assumed the hostess messed something up. As she led us to our table there sitting were his parents and my parents. Another surprise! It was the best dinner and we talked about how they’ve kept this a secret for the last month and I told them all about my day. I don’t think I could stop smiling.
When dinner ended, they asked what we were going to do, Conner said go look at Christmas lights. By that time I didn’t care what we did, I just had the best day of my life and didn’t know what could make it any better. So we drove around for a while and took a different way home, basically wasted a lot of time. I made Conner promise me no more surprises so I could relax. He promised and when we got closer to home he told me we should go to his house to show his grandma my ring. We got to his house and I walk in not to see just his grandma, I walk in and everyone yells SURPRISE…all of our closest friends, and family are there for an engagement party. Conner thought of it all. I was under the impression that his siblings weren’t coming in for the holidays until Christmas Eve and had even asked him earlier that morning if he was lying to me and he convinced me they weren’t, and there they were.
There was the cutest decorations, snacks, and my heart was so full. I looked at Conner and said now do you promise no more surprises? He was finally done with all he had planned this last month and I was blown away that nearly 40 people so close to us kept it a secret that whole time. The best day of my life by far and so glad Abbey was at every stop to capture it all.
Photos by Abbey Kline