Shelby and Andrew
How We Met
This is my favorite story to tell! Andrew and I currently work for the same company, Booster, and we both started our career on the same team up in Washington, D.C, but a year apart! I was there first in 2013, moved to Atlanta for an internship. When I left DC, Andrew filled my spot on the team. We had just missed each other in the transition! I stayed close with the team there, so during my Atlanta internship, I went to DC to see everyone. During my visit, we all went to dinner together. Andrew was on the team at the time, and he sat next to me! It was inevitable…his bright blue eyes, huge smile, & fun personality hooked me from the start. We chatted a little bit, figured out that we had a lot of mutual friends, but that was really the extent of it. I can vividly remember being interested, and I was simply drawn to him. He has the kindest heart, and is inclusive of all people. I got to see it in action that night. We left dinner, and I did not think I would ever see him again!
About six months later after my internship ended, I accepted a new position at Booster. During training, I walked into the room, and Andrew’s bright blue eyes and huge smile greeted me! I could not believe we were seeing each other again. Over the course of the week, we really connected and got to know each other. I had never felt that way about someone, so I was trusting that what my heart was feeling was worth seeking out. I learned from Andrew that he was going to be moving to Southern California that next week for work. All I could see was the 2000+ miles that would be in between us.Thankfully for Andrew, I was (& still am) a determined woman. It was our last day together, and I knew I needed to make one last effort to spend time together!
My opportunity came early that morning at the office. I overheard him saying to someone that he needed a ride to his brother’s house at the end of the day. In the most nonchalant way possible, I told him that I had plans to go into the city and I could take him. Little did he know, I immediately rescheduled a hair appointment and dinner plans. When I say I was determined, I mean it! Thanks to Atlanta traffic, Andrew and I spent an hour and a half in the car together talking. It’s one of the only times I have ever been grateful for bumper to bumper traffic! I dropped him off at his brother’s house and when he gave me a very friendly side hug to say goodbye, I drove away sure that there was nothing more in store for us.
About a week later, our mutual friend Leslie (who knew I had feelings for Andrew) mentioned to him that she heard we spent a lot of time together in Atlanta for training. She asked him if he would ever be interested in dating me. Andrew replied to Leslie that he was certain I would never be interested in dating him. With one look from Leslie, Andrew says that it all clicked! He was so distracted with his new job and a big move ahead that he never even thought my advances were anything more than me being friendly. Leslie encouraged him that maybe he should think a bit more into that.
I am so grateful for that conversation, because from that point forward things really changed for Andrew and I! He began reaching out to me, and with every text and call, I grew more hopeful that maybe all I had felt was not one-sided! We didn’t talk about our feelings for each other, but for once I was okay with being patient and letting things happen naturally. After a month and a half, we would be seeing each other in Atlanta for a work event. Andrew and I excitedly greeted each other with butterflies in our stomach! Everything felt so natural as we continued to spend time together. One night, he asked me if we could spend some time together just the two of us. I felt like I was in a dream! We found a spot to sit in the hotel lobby, and he walked me through what he was thinking and feeling since the day we met.
Andrew told me that after our month or so of talking and getting to know each other, that he had grown to want me in his life every day. He said that although we lived over 2000 miles away from each other, that he wanted to date me and pursue a relationship with me! He told me that the reason he did not fully reciprocate in the beginning was because he didn’t want to lead me on, and wanted to be sure that we were not jumping into something too quickly. My response was that it was about time, and that the feeling was definitely mutual. From that moment we knew that we would never be the same! We decided together that we would take it one day at a time, give it 100%, & trust God in every step.
The rest was history! There were a lot of flights between Georgia and California, tired mornings in Georgia after Red Eyes back home, Facetime calls almost every day, & of course snail mail. We adventured, spent time with each others’ families, and invested in spending time with our friends who we love so much! Andrew lived in Newport Beach for our first year of dating, and then got a promotion that sent him north to San Fransisco. This was a huge step in his career! Thankfully, work supported my decision to make the move to San Fransisco. We went from living 2,220 miles apart to living less than 1 mile apart. After almost 1.5 years of long distance, we finally closed the gap! It’s been a really fun season for us starting life together in Northern California. We love it here, and truly feel that it is home for us!
How He Asked
Andrew’s proposal is one of the few times in my entire life that I have truly been surprised. I love surprises, and he was intentional to make sure that would happen with every detail. Napa is a very special place to us. When Andrew got his promotion last year, we took a weekend trip to San Francisco to see where he would be living and working. One afternoon we decided to take a very spontaneous trip to Napa!
In Napa, we came across a beautiful restaurant tucked away in the hills. We pulled up to Auberge du Soleil and it quickly became one of our favorite places that we had ever been. From our seats on the balcony, we clinked our glasses of wine, and looked out at the most beautiful view of vineyards! After lunch, we walked down to a balcony below where we had eaten lunch to enjoy more beautiful views.
We took in the moment, and dreamed together of the days that I would live in California as well. We took a few pictures together to remember the moment!
Fast forward to February 14, 2017. This was 8 months after our first trip to San Francisco and I had been living in California for about 4 months. Andrew took me to a nice dinner in town and told me that he had a Valentine’s day surprise for me! He revealed that a few days later we would be headed to Napa for the day to do a Wine Maker for a Day class at Raymond Winery. It was the perfect gift!
Over dinner, we talked about other vineyards we could visit, and I suggested that we could go to Auberge du Soleil for lunch. Andrew agreed that it was a great idea, but told me he wanted to plan the rest of the day since it was my Valentine’s day gift. That weekend, we headed up to Napa to make our morning wine making appointment. In the class, we worked with a staff member of Raymond Winery to taste, blend, bottle, cork, and seal our own wine. It was amazing! We were even able to create our own labels that we put on the bottles.
One of them was named Peach Coast, a combination of our Georgia roots and West coast home, with a picture of our favorite sunset that we watched in San Francisco. The other was named La Reyna after our favorite Penny and Sparrow song with a photo of the two of us. They both were labeled & dated February 18th, 2017. Once the class had ended, it was time to head to Auberge. We got a table with the same beautiful view on the balcony, and we were both so excited to be there again. We talked about our last time there, and shared some of our favorite memories of the time between then and now. We could not believe that we had dreamed of the day we would live in the same place, and it had finally happened. I looked at Andrew and said, “I can’t wait to do this forever.” After lunch, we walked down to the balcony we had visited 8 months prior and enjoyed the beautiful view.
We stood there hugging, and Andrew began telling me the reasons he loves me and is grateful for. He is always so sweet, so it was not something that made me suspicious. I was looking at him and noticed that his cheeks and lips were a little jittery. I asked him why his lips were quivering, because it was odd to me. It was in that moment he pulled the ring box out of his back pocket and got down on one knee!
I gasped and immediately started crying. Andrew looked up at me and asked me to spend forever with him! I looked at him and could not stop saying “Oh my gosh! Is this really happening?!” At one point, I felt like I could not even fully stand, so I knelled down with him! In shock, I asked if anyone even knew this was happening. That is how surprised I was!
From one knee, he told me that he had asked for my parent’s blessing months before, that my best friends all knew, and that we had an engagement party the next weekend in Georgia with all our friends and family! He took the ring out of the box and told me that a part of the ring was my Nanny’s diamond that she had left for me when she passed away. My Nanny is my Mom’s mom, and I spent most of my childhood by her side. She was my best friend. At that point, I really lost it and could not stop crying! My heart truly felt like it exploded with joy. I joyfully answered, “One million times yes!” and he put the most perfect ring on my finger! He stood up and we hugged. Our sneaky photographers came out of hiding, and everyone on the balcony above began clapping and cheering for us!
Although our friends and family are mostly all in Georgia, California has become our home together. I love more than I can say in words that the start of our forever together happened in a place that is mutually special to us. It was the most perfect day!