Columbia Engagement | Stacey and Shawn

Today I’d like to introduce you to Stacey and Shawn from Columbia, South Carolina.  We met up at the State House grounds in downtown Columbia late in the afternoon to make their engagement photos, and then we headed down to the banks of the Congaree River for a visit to the scene of The Proposal (it’s important, it should be capitalized.  Every time).  This set of photos is pretty darn sweet, because not only are Stacey and Shawn great in front of a camera and cuter than kittens playing with bubbles, but we were also lucky enough to get some really amazing afternoon sunlight.  Also, I feel it’s only fair to warn you that if you’re going to hang out with Stacey and Shawn, you probably shouldn’t try to drink anything, because it’s going to end up coming out your nose.  Sorry to be so icky to infinity, but these are two wicked funny people, and I hadn’t done a good deed yet today (cough-cough, in a few days, cough-cough).  A public service announcement counts, right?  So put down your coffee cup before you scroll any further.  You’re welcome.

And now, here’s a little bit more about them in their words:

How did you meet?

Stacey’s side:

We met in a rather average way—at work. What makes it not-average is that my parents met at the same company 30 years ago—the plot thickens…kinda.

At the time, we both were going through a corporate leadership course for management. We were both working during the evenings, but these courses were held every Monday during the day. About 2 months after we met, we bonded in the lunchroom telling jokes and stories (he was super cute, and very interesting—he lived in Japan for a year teaching English, what?!) and I invited him to my epic rooftop bar birthday party that weekend.

The Monday after the party was my actual birthday and he asked me out on our first date after class. So here I am, struggling to get my spare cupcakes back into the container without making a mess, and this Superman-esque guy asks me out. ON MY BIRTHDAY. How gutsy is that, right?!  He was the first and last guy for which I broke my “no dating at work” rule. We went to see Batman and we were holding hands within the first 10 minutes… no big deal.

Shawn’s view: 

Like Stacey, I had a general rule about dating people at work. However, I knew Stacey was special so I broke that rule. (If you’re going to break a rule, it might as well be for a good reason!)

When I asked Stacey out, I didn’t think I was being all that bold. After all, a birthday’s just another day, right? Lucky for me, she didn’t have plans already. I’m glad she said yes!

What was dating like?

Stacey’s side:

Oh man, dating Shawn is so fun. We have adventures every day that vary in scale- whether its grocery shopping or going to Charleston for the weekend, we’re just happy to be together and have fun. I hope we never stop dating.

Shawn’s view:

Stacey and I are able to have fun doing anything. Even just running errands is fun when we do it together. We are both open-minded and open to adventure, so our plans/activities can vary wildly—which is great!

 Describe your proposal.

Stacey’s side:

We had been talking about getting married for a while and had gone ring shopping together, so I knew that a proposal was coming but I didn’t know when. The night before, Shawn suggested that we go to the Riverwalk in downtown Columbia which is basically a sidewalk that runs alongside the Congaree River (thanks Google). It’s one of our favorite places to go walking, so I agreed. The next morning, however, I was STRUGGLING to get out of bed. Like forrealitwassohard but he made me coffee and got me out of bed and into the shower and we were headed downtown. Once we got there, we were walking along the path and I didn’t make it very far before we sat down on a bench. I was making small talk because he was being super weird and I was about to bring up the Law&Order SVU episode from the night before when he stopped me and got down on one knee to propose.

He was so calm and sure of himself and it was perfect. I was shaking for maybe about 2 days afterwards from joy and beside-myselfness (yes that’s a word, no need to look it up).

Shawn’s view:

So I had purchased the ring, made the proposal plans in my head, and selected the location. However, when the big day comes, Stacey would not GET OUT OF BED. So I started to make coffee, tried to get the puppies to wake her up—everything short of banging pots and pans together. I had a proposal to make, and time was wasting away!

After finally getting her up, Stacey was stressing about getting to work on time. In the back of my head, I knew she would probably call out of work after I proposed. I just had to get her to the spot without telling her why. So I was probably acting weird. But I had a good reason!

How would you describe your relationship?

Stacey’s side:

If I could describe our relationship in one word, it would be thoughtful. Both of us are introverts and intuitive by nature so we spend a lot of time thinking about how our words and actions affect others. This has helped us through everything from navigating the new dynamic at work, communicating with one another, and planning our wedding.

It’s probably because of this trait that we knew that this relationship was special fairly quickly. It helps that I ask some pretty direct questions too ☺

Shawn’s view:

Stacey and I make a great pair because we not only love each other, but because we understand our strengths and weaknesses. We support each other, and have a vision of growing together throughout our lives. We can be serious, silly, quirky, fun, lazy, active—whatever the situation requires. I like that we can do that, and I love Stacey for being who she is!

We have active minds that entertain all subjects, and we love to analyze things together. We often pause TV shows just so we can talk about the characters and meanings of scenes—who does that?!

What’s your wedding going to be like?

Stacey’s side:

I’m hoping for simple elegance with lots of lights, good food, and a beautiful view. It’s going to be spectacular, and it’s going to be so “us”.

Shawn’s view:

Stacey and I aren’t formal people, so we’d like a relatively simple wedding. We want people to have good food, good drinks, good music, and a good time. People often tell us the wedding is “all about us”. Maybe to some extent, but the wedding is also about all the people who’ve been part of our lives. With that in mind, we want to make it easy for everyone to feel comfortable and have fun.

Now you totally want to be their friends, right?  In case you were wondering, Stacey did eventually give Shawn a thumbs-up for his efforts.  It was close, but he squeaked by.  Thanks Stacey and Shawn for being such a blast to hang out with.  By the time I got to my car, I realized that my cheeks were totally hurting from laughing.  I’m making a note in your file to use a faster shutter speed at your wedding so that more photos are in focus next time.  I can’t wait for your wedding in September!

Amanda Summerlin

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