Sarah and Andy

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How We Met

I have never been a huge fan of Valentine’s Day, especially in high school. It was my junior year and a few of my friends planned on going to a party to celebrate being single. I was at my best friends house getting ready, doing what girls do, and we heard a knock on her door. Two boys were standing there from our class. No one invited them, they just showed up. It turned on one of the boys liked my friend and he wanted to see her on Valentine’s Day.

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It was only us five hanging out at her house for a little. I was not interested in hanging out with just these two boys on Valentine’s Day, I wanted to go to the party! I was texting my friends across the room trying to convince them to get the boys to leave, so we could go to the party. Andy, one of the boys, made a comment about how everyone was texting everyone in the room. As a joke, I asked my friend for his number and started texting him to be annoying.

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Little did I know that those text messages would lead to a seven year relationship with my high school sweet heart. Later on that night, I went to the party and continued to text Andy. He did not come to the party because he had “other stuff” to do. I will never forget one of his texts said, “Why do you want me there so bad?” I thought to myself, I don’t want you here that bad.. don’t flatter yourself. I’m 99 percent sure I never answered that text because I did not like him or care if he came at all.

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A month passed and we texted very minimal, but he was always on the back of my mind. Spring break came in March and one of my best friends boyfriend was having people over. Him and Andy were good friends, so my friend and I made a plan to get Andy there so we could hang out again.

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The plan worked and Andy showed up to the party with one of his friends. We talked the whole night and I woke up the next day to a text message from him. I was shocked that out of no where I started to really like this sarcastic, baseball loving, moving quoting guy. Following this night, we hung out twice always in group settings.

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I now developed a full crush on Andy. I would get butterflies when he would text me and talk nonstop to my friends about him. On March 21, 2009 Andy asked if I wanted to be his girlfriend. We were with a small group of friends hanging out and he pulled me aside and just asked me.’

Andy was kind of shy and quiet, so I was shocked. I was filled with so many emotions. I was excited, happy, nervous, confused, everything all at one time. I barely even knew him, but I felt so comfortable with him and he made me feel different than any other boy. Honestly, my friends made bets on how long we would last because it was so fast and random.

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Basically in a week, we hung out, talked, and started dating. On Monday, at school, so many people come up to me and asked, “Are you and Andy really dating?” I was hesitant myself, but hey worth a shot right. I remember seeing Andy in the hall that day and we made eye contact and walked right past each other. We were both so awkward, shy, and nervous.

I ALWAYS overthought EVERYTHING. Like most girls, I would read way more into texts than I should, but with Andy, I didn’t. I didn’t think, I just took went with it. I never overthought him or us. Most people gave us a month to last. I myself thought a month would probably be right. Seven years later, two separate colleges, long distance relationship, I am still with my high school sweetheart and I could not pick a better person to go through life with.

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How He Asked

Fall and Halloween are one of my favorite times of the year. I love dressing up and having fun with my friends. Once Andy and I started dating, we have spend every single Halloween together for the past seven years. In college, we started a tradition of going to pick out a pumpkin, carve it, and take your typical fall pumpkin patch picture.

This year, we just moved into our first house on October 20, 2016. I was so overwhelmed with moving in, buying furniture, work, basically anything that you could stress about, I was. Andy was determined to have a Halloween party at our house. He knows this is my favorite party of the year and he wanted to make it special.

However, I was not into having a party at our house 8 days after we moved in. I wanted my house to look perfect before everyone saw it, and it was a long way from that. Andy said he would take care of everything and I had nothing to worry about. Eventually, I gave in and let him invite our friends over.

October 29th comes around and the house is a MESS. Andy spent all morning doing yard work, and I was running errands with my mom. We got a a new kitchen table that morning and I wanted to put it together before the party. Around 11:30, Andy said he had a surprise for my to get out of the house and do something fun because he knew how stressed I was. Immediately, I said no way, we still have to put the table together, clean everything, and get our costumes ready for the night.

He promised my we would only be gone an hour. He wanted to go to the pumpkin patch to pick out a pumpkin. This was the first year that we did not get a pumpkin since we started dating. I was so irritated and annoyed. I texted my friends and his sister about it. I was snapping how much I did not want to go, but in the back of my mind, I did not want to break our annual tradition of getting a pumpkin and taking a picture with it.

I caved in and said fine we can go, but I was even more stressed because the house was a mess. We started to head to the pumpkin patch and Andy said he wanted to try a  new one this year. It took us over an HOUR to get there. I was livid. Andy kept getting lost and making wrong turns. I just wanted to get home to get everything set up.

Finally, we pull up to this little pumpkin patch a hour away from our house. Of course, the tractor just pulled away and we had to wait for the next one. Andy and I sat on a bench waiting for the new tractor for 15 minutes. My patience was running low and I was getting very irritated. Finally, the tractor pulls up and I get on.

While I’m sitting down, Andy goes and talks to the tractor driver. This was not like Andy to do. When he came over he said he asked if they had enough pumpkins because he wanted to make sure we got a good one. I was confused, but whatever, he was determined to get a pumpkin. We pull up to the pumpkin patch and everyone gets of the tractor. Again, Andy goes and talks to the tractor driver and then tells me to get back on the tractor.

I hate awkward, uncomfortable situations and this was one of them. We now were sitting on the tractor with everyone who just picked their pumpkin and we had nothing. Andy told me we were going to a different pumpkin patch because these pumpkins were picked over. I’m not sure why Andy thought we would get special treatment over everyone, but I went with it.

Everyone is sitting on the tractor with their pumpkins and the tractor starts to head back. Suddenly, the tractor goes off the dirt road and up a huge hill. Everyone is confused and the driver says we are taking a little detour. A few second later, the tractor stops and he looks back and tells Andy to get off.

Andy and I get off the tractor while everyone else stays on, and then the tractor left. I can’t even describe how I felt when we walked to the other side of the tractor. Andy grabbed my hand as we walked through the orchards. I saw a beautiful blanket set up with “LOVE”, wine, flowers, and chocolate.

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I knew what was about to happen, and I couldn’t wrap my head around it.

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Andy got down on one knee and made this the best day of my life.

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My best friend, high school sweetheart, love of my life was asking me to marry him and I couldn’t hold back my tears.

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Not only did he plan this outstanding proposal where I thought we were just getting our typical pumpkin, he had an amazing photographer capture this special moment in our lives.

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I could not stop smiling.

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The butterflies in my stomach, felt exactly like I did seven years ago when I first started talking to Andy.

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Little did I know, that this Halloween party was actually an engagement party.

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My sister-in-law and Andy’s sister were back at our house cleaning and setting up the party.

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It was a perfect, romantic night that I would not change for the world. I am so excited to marry my very best friend in the world!!

Special Thanks

Raquita Henderson
Photographer