Today's blog post is so great I can hardly stand it! You'll be as excited as I am about these two high school sweethearts when you hear their story! I loved getting to know them while we took engagement photos at Watson Mill Bridge State Park, just outside of Athens, GA. I met Julee Beth and Ryan long after they'd started being Julee-Beth-and-Ryan so I asked them to fill me in a little. Hearing it in her words is a little like hearing the happiest Taylor Swift song:
Ryan was in chorus in high school and so was Julee Beth’s twin brother. We already knew who each other were but had never really met. We also both played church basketball at First Baptist. Ryan was a part of the youth band that played every Wednesday night and Julee Beth started attending the services with a couple of her friends. We started speaking to each other more and more at church and when we saw each other at school. One night, while scrimmaging each other in basketball practice, Julee Beth was showing up one of the other guys on Ryan’s team. Ryan told the guy to switch players with him so he could guard Julee Beth. The rest of the practice we were just flirting with each other and having a good time. And that was the first night that we both really knew that we liked each other.
I love the part about the basketball scrimmage! :) They have such a great story and they've been a pair ever since. So as they got more and more serious Ryan started looking for a ring. He did such a great job of being stealthy about buying the ring that he should probably give lessons in it. GUYS, TAKE NOTE:
We had been to look a couple of times so I had a pretty good idea of what Julee Beth wanted. I took a Thursday off of work because I knew she had to teach during the day and had class immediately following, so she wouldn’t be home until later that night. I drove over to Atlanta that morning and went to Solomon Brothers in Buckhead. I was completely out of my element and was so overwhelmed. The saleswoman was able to show me a couple of styles of bands and a few different diamonds until I found the perfect ring. I knew once I saw it that it was exactly what she wanted and bought it that day! I drove back to Athens and acted like everything was normal, even though it was the hardest secret I have ever had to keep! Julee Beth did not suspect a thing and all she knew was that I had a “great day at work.”
And the proposal? A trip to Colorado, a couple of great friends, and a hiking trip that Julee Beth was not up for! Check it out:
This trail was supposed to have a great view of Denver and the land outside of the city. At this point it was getting chilly, so I am wearing Ryan’s Georgia windbreaker as we walk up to the trail. It had gotten so soggy and muddy from all the snow melting down the mountain. Laura and I began to tell the guys that we were not sure about going because we didn’t want to mess up our shoes-which is hilarious now! Laura, being more determined, began climbing up the fence post that lined the mountain trail and I stood there trying to discourage the idea of hiking up the soggy mountain.
But of course, together they make it up the mountain and Ryan proposes. The rest of their story is just beginning! :)
Their engagement session was on one of the first sunny days after a lot of rain and I just love how vibrant all of the colors are! The Watson Mill Bridge was a gorgeous backdrop (that Ryan suggested!) for these engagement pictures. We grabbed a bunch of photos there before heading back to Athens quickly for a few photos on North campus! I was nervous but we made it just in time!
Thank you, Julee Beth and Ryan! You two were a joy to photograph and I am looking forward to your wedding!