Melinda and Jarrod

How We Met

I met Jarrod in February 2013 when we were both attending Penn State University. Jarrod was a Junior at the time and very focused on his studies. I was a Sophomore and very focused on my social life. We had a lot of mutual friends, so many that it’s actually surprising we didn’t meet earlier during our time at Penn State.

Our first date was on Valentine’s Day in a State College hot spot, The Deli. We ordered the same meal and ended up spending hours at that table learning more about each other. Things progressed quickly from there and within two months, we’d met each other families.

While we’d immediately hit it off, we quickly realized that we’d be forced to spend the next three months apart as I was going to be spending the summer interning in Los Angeles while Jarrod would be doing the same in New York City. However, after two months together, we were inseparable and knew we had to give the short-term long distance relationship a shot. We ended up traveling across the country numerous times that summer to visit each other, and the rest is history.

How He Asked

Jarrod and I love to travel together and we always try to take advantage of long weekends to get out of the city. We decided to spend our Labor Day Weekend in Montreal, a destination that was new to both of us. It’s a running joke between us that we never have smooth travel experiences. Our experience getting to Montreal was a mess and Jarrod was noticeably stressed, which is very out of character for Mr. Suave.

I thought he was worried we were going to miss our dinner reservation, which we’d made months in advance, but little did I know that he was nervous that TSA was going to pull my engagement ring out of his suitcase because we were traveling internationally. Jarrod put a sticky note on the box explaining to TSA that the box contained an engagement ring and asked that they use discretion if they did, in fact, need to search his bag. So cute! Lucky enough, we made it through security and customs without any issues.

Our first day in Montreal was perfect with beautiful weather so we decided to go visit the Montreal Botanical Gardens. We wandered away from all of the other guests and stumbled upon a beautiful pond covered in lily pads. I asked Jarrod to take a photo of me (a girl needs her Instagram content!) and he knelt down to get our Canon camera out of his backpack. When I turned around, Jarrod was down on one knee with the ring of my dreams in his hand, and I was overwhelmed with happiness, surprise, and excitement. Once I remembered how to speak, I said: “YES, of course, I want to marry you!”

The Botanical Gardens were the perfect backdrop for our engagement and I can’t imagine it happening anywhere else. Most people spend their entire lives looking for their special someone and I feel incredibly blessed to have found my person so early in life. We are currently planning our wedding in Sonoma Valley, California for June 2019.