Mariah and Charles

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I met Charles almost 5 years ago, during the summer of 2011. I was playing basketball at South Dakota State University and we were recommended to come our freshmen year before school started. As much as I didn’t want to at the time, I am so thankful that I did. I met Charles through a teammate’s cousin when we were invited over for a spaghetti dinner and although the spaghetti was almost inedible, it’s a night I will never forget. Chuck (Charles) was a cute; farm boy who said he had horses and if you knew me my passion in life was riding horse. Now, I’ve already mentioned how handsome Chuck was, but he was even more of a goofball and although I thought he was just flirting with me that night, I’ve learned since then that he’s just a funny guy. A few weeks went by and he invited me home. I know, sounds serious right? It wasn’t quite like that. He invited me to his parent’s to ride their horses. The ongoing joke is that riding horses was his way of luring me in and apparently it worked!

About three years ago, I began photographing weddings, engagements, families and so on. Everyone once in awhile, I will make Chuck get in front of the camera and take pictures with me. The morning of our engagement was no different. The crab apple trees were blossoming and as many of you know they only last for a week or so. So, I woke up early, got all dressed up, Chuck came over and we were on our way. I had a couple of spots that I had picked out where I wanted to take photos. After taking pictures, Chuck asked me to go to campus with him. I quickly asked, “Why” but went along with it because it was such a nice day out. He said he wanted to take me to “our spot”, which was by this tower on campus called the campanile and if you’ve ever been to the SDSU campus it’s pretty much their landmark. We had started going there my freshmen year because no one wants to sit in their dorm all the time. “Our spot” was the place that we really got to know each other, we would have long talks about the future, tell each other about our days, or just to get some fresh air. So, to say this spot means a lot to us would be an understatement.

When we got to our spot, we sat in the same place as we usually do and talked about the past and the countless times we had been there, we even talked about the future and how I was graduating the next day. Yes, it was graduation weekend! By then, I could tell Chuck was a little nervous but shortly after, he got down on one knee and said, “I love you and I had a speech prepared but I’m too nervous, will you marry me?” Of course, I said, “Yes”.

Obviously, that would have been enough to keep me on cloud nine the rest of the month, but a few short hours later I was offered a job that I so badly wanted. As I write this today, I still find myself speechless. Friday, May 6th, 2016, was a great day, to say the least. The weekend was full of celebration with family and friends and will go down in history as the best weekend of my life.

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Special Thanks

Mariah Elise Photography
Photographer