Wedding Wednesday: Our Engagement

Milwaukee Engagement PhotosCheers, friends! I’m kicking off a new series today. While we got married in September 2015, I thought it would be fun to share our engagement and wedding photos along with a few more personal stories about how Bill proposed, the planning leading up to the big day, the wedding itself and our honeymoon.

Milwaukee Engagement Photos Milwaukee Engagement PhotosBill proposed the night before I left for a three week tour in Japan with my Irish dance company so you could say I was just a bit surprised. Before I dive into the whole story, I did want to share that Bill had been trying to get me to take a weekend trip to Madison, WI for awhile. Even though we’re from the same hometown, we met while we were attending UW-Madison. He has since told me that his plan was to get me back to Madison and propose on the corner outside of my sorority house where I had asked him to formal (which was kind of like our first date). So, he was going to bring it all full circle. Super sweet, right? Well, I was in the middle of my first year of teaching and also training for our Japan tour so I didn’t have much free time to go to Madison and kept brushing it off, and we never went that summer. Sorry, Bill.

Milwaukee Engagement Photos Back to the night of the proposal. I had been in Chicago the entire week for rehearsals. I was supposed to leave the studio by 1 p.m. at the latest to run errands, pack and hang out with Bill before I left. I kept texting him that I was about to leave, but I don’t think I left until around 7 p.m. I called him as soon as I got in the car feeling awful that I was running so late. He proceeded to tell me that he had made us dinner reservations but had to keep calling the restaurant to push back the timing. The restaurant finally told him to just come if he actually could but to stop worrying about changing the reservation (ugh, I’m the worst). Because Bill is so patient, he told me not to worry about it and that I still had time to run to Target (bless his heart).

Milwaukee Engagement PhotosMilwaukee Engagement Photos Milwaukee Engagement Photos Milwaukee Engagement PhotosI think I was still at Target around 9 p.m., snapping my sister from the dressing room and going through every makeup aisle because obviously that was the best time to stock up (ugh, again). Little did I know that she knew Bill’s plan and was trying to get me to hurry up. I finally pulled into our garage around 9:30 p.m. that night. Bill met me to help unload everything from the car. I remember noticing that he seemed dressed up but then I just thought it was for the dinner reservation that I had totally screwed up. As soon as we got upstairs, I opened my computer because I still had a handful of emails to send to our crew that night. At that point, Bill said we should FaceTime my cute little cousins (hey Franc and G!).

It’s important to note that I used to FaceTime the two of them all.of.the.time. To the point where Bill wouldn’t understand what we possibly needed to talk about and would excuse himself from the room. They were just so cute. Knowing that I was the one who always initiated the FaceTime calls, I thought it was kind of weird that Bill actually suggested it, especially when I was running so late, but I was all for procrastinating more and chatting with them.

Milwaukee Engagement Photos Little White Dress for Engagement PhotosMilwaukee Engagement PhotosWhen we FaceTimed them, they were being so weird. They were barely talking which never happens. Because they weren’t saying much, I kept working on my emails and waiting for them to talk instead of giggle. All of a sudden the two of them shouted, “BILL HAS A QUESTION FOR YOU!” And then I looked to my left, and Bill was down on one knee. The internet went out, and we lost our connection to them but then we had a minute to take in the moment together. It was the best and super, super sweet. Later that night, we asked the two of them to be our flower girl and ring bearer.

Milwaukee Engagement Photos Milwaukee Engagement PhotosWe immediately went to my parents’ house. Bill’s family was already there (and had been for awhile) so we could all celebrate together. It was a perfect night and a pretty remarkable sendoff to Japan. I think we got back around midnight, and I immediately started packing, slept for an hour and then went straight to the airport. Needless to say, I was pretty thankful for a 14 hour flight to catch up on some sleep, but it was really hard saying goodbye to my fiance.

Photos by June & Jae Photography

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  • Sending a virtual cheers to any other parents that had a 5:30 a.m. wake up call this morning ☕️ Not going to lie though, we’ve gotten so much done before 9:30 a.m. including a quiet walk around our neighborhood.
  • Three years without our Kev. Remembering him today and every day 💙
  • So happy to be reunited with my people after traveling for work all week ❤️
  • I feel like a bit of a broken record these days but healing takes time and healing a broken heart while trying to keep it together for your family is hard. My mom was my best friend, and while I like to think I knew how good I had it while she was alive, there are just so many more things I’d want to thank her for, especially with my new lens as a mom to Ainsley. I can’t imagine going through chemo and still trying to take care of her grown kids the way she did. I can’t imagine getting the call that no parent ever wants to receive finding out your son passed away, and then going on to keep fighting cancer for another year and a half. All while still making me breakfast on the weekend and running errands for me during the week, helping me plan our wedding (literally don’t know what I would’ve done without her and my sister), taking every phone call from me as I was navigating new jobs, visiting house after house as Bill and I tried to find our first home and so, so much more that will never fit into an Instagram caption. I see so much of my mom’s determination and stubbornness in Ainsley, and I can’t wait to see more of her as she continues to grow up. I am forever grateful to be her mom — it’s the best ‘title’ I’ll ever have. And while, I’m grateful to have had my mom for as long as I did, it still feels way too short. Today was filled with lots of giggles and snuggles but also lots of tears as I celebrate my first Mother’s Day with Ainsley and my second without my mom. I’m trying to be better about letting myself have the bad days and giving myself more grace. So I’m calling it a night and watching Bad Moms while eating ice cream in bed. Sending lots of love if you’re having a hard day and a virtual cheers with my pint of ice cream ❤️

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