HOW DID YOU MEET?
We met the summer after I graduated high school in 2007 when we both worked at Puleo’s Grille. He was a server and I was a hostess. Let’s just say there was a lot of flirting up at the hostess stand that summer. However, we never actually went on any dates, and at the end of the summer I went off to college in Chattanooga. The following summer I came back home to Cookeville and worked at Puleo’s again, so the flirting continued and this time we went on a few lunch dates. Still nothing came of it, and I went back to Chattanooga at the end of the summer. This little game continued for 2 more years until my 21st birthday. I had my birthday dinner at Puleo’s, and all of my friends knew about Timothy and that we had liked each other in the past, so they all asked me if he was going to be our server that night. I had no idea. But sure enough after we were all seated for dinner, in walks Timothy to take our drink orders and the room went silent. Twenty-five pairs of female eyes immediately turned in his direction. Rumor has it that he was pretty intimidated. After I left the restaurant, we texted for the rest of the night. A couple weeks later, Timothy called me as I was driving back to Chattanooga for school (yet again!), and finally laid all of his feelings out on the table. If you have ever driven from Cookeville to Chattanooga, you know that the cell phone service is pretty spotty along the way. Right after he finally told me that he liked me, we lost cell phone connection before I had the chance to tell him I liked him too. When I got a better cell connection, I called him back so we could finish our conversation, and we made plans for me to come back home to Cookeville a few weeks later when we would finally go on a real date. I guess the timing was finally right, so even though we still lived in different cities, we started dating after knowing each other for 3 years. Oh, and did I mention that Timothy was my first (and last!) kiss?
WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO TIMOTHY?
His smile. Also the fact that he is so personable. I’ve never seen him meet someone and not be able to carry on a conversation like they were old friends. He just overflows with kindness and has such an amazing heart. And to top it off, he loves Jesus.
WHEN DID YOU KNOW HE WAS “THE ONE”?
Let’s just say that Timothy knew I was the one way before I knew that he was the one, and he was so incredibly patient as he waited for me to figure that out. When I realized that I couldn’t imagine my life without him would be the cliche answer, however it’s also true. But I guess when I realized that every single one of his actions when I was around him was rooted out of love for me…that’s when I knew. Timothy is genuinely one of the most selfless people I know. His love for me and for others is an incredible reflection of God’s love for all of His children.
HOW DID HE PROPOSE?
It was the night before his 25th birthday. We had just had dinner with my mom at our favorite Cookeville restaurant, House of Thai. He told me that he was going to hang out with his brother, Ben, while my mom and I did some shopping for his birthday. When my mom and I pulled into the driveway after shopping, I noticed that all of the porch lights were off. As we walked up to the front door, I realized that all of the lights inside the house were turned off as well. We walked into the front room and I saw a single votive candle on a table. That’s when the butterflies in my stomach started going crazy because I knew what was about to happen. I then walked into the living room, which was decorated from top to bottom in white Christmas lights, and the mantel and all of the tables were covered in lit votive candles (Ben had been helping him set the room up while we were shopping!). Timothy was standing at the far end of the room waiting for me. He sat me down on the couch and sang an acapella version of “The Luckiest” by Ben Folds. We both love that song, and we had seen Ben Folds perform with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra the year before. When he finished singing, he invited my mom in to be the photographer, got down on one knee, said a whole slew of unbelievably sweet things, and asked me to be his wife.
WHAT INSPIRED YOUR VISION FOR YOUR WEDDING?
We wanted a wedding where all of our friends and family would feel relaxed and just have fun! We never wanted a super fancy wedding, so we went for a more casual feel with a touch of elegance. We decided that Dogwood Park would be the perfect location for the atmosphere that we wanted. Pinterest, of course, was a HUGE help. We picked our colors- yellow, grey, and light blue, and just went from there. I also wanted a bit of a DIY feel, so I let my bridesmaids pick out any style of grey dress to wear, and I also made some DIY crafts and decorations.
TELL US ABOUT FINDING YOUR VENUE:
We knew we wanted to get married in Cookeville. It’s where I was born and raised, where we met, and the most central location for all of our family and friends. We only looked at a few places because we knew we wanted an outdoor wedding to display all of Fall’s beautiful colors. Dogwood Park was really an easy decision for us because it is about a block from my house, right next door to the Leslie Town Centre where we decided to have the reception, and of course it looks absolutely beautiful after the expansion and renovations. To top it off, there is a lamp post dedicated to my dad as well as a tree planted in his memory at Dogwood Park, so I knew that his spirit would be present at the park on our wedding day.
WHAT SONGS DID YOU USE AT YOUR WEDDING?
A lot of the pre-ceremony music was my cousin Jeremy’s own music that he had written himself. For the seating of parents and grandparents, Jeremy played and sang “Garden” by NeedToBreathe, and for the wedding party processional, he played and sang “Marry Me” by Train. I walked down the aisle with my mom and brother as a dear family friend played a beautiful piano version (no vocals) of “The Luckiest” by Ben Folds, since that is the song Timothy sang to me the night he proposed. After the wedding, we walked out to “She Said Yes” by Mumford & Sons. It is such a fun song, and everyone was clapping along with it!
WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE IN PLANNING YOUR WEDDING?
Probably planning it long distance. I lived in Chattanooga when we first got engaged, and then a few months before the wedding we moved to Nashville, so the entire time I was planning the wedding, I was doing it from afar. It was stressful to schedule time to drive in to Cookevillle to meet with vendors, and it was hard to plan out decorations when I couldn’t go to the venues and brainstorm ideas in person.
DID YOU HAVE ANY DIY (Do It Yourself) DETAILS?
Yes! We had several. I went to Goodwill with my maid-of-honor, and we bought quite a few picture frames of various sizes and painted them. I then put scrapbook paper into the frames and made them into signs to display at the wedding and reception. For example, I made one that said “Don’t get blinded by our love!” to display next to our wedding favors — sunglasses! I also asked one of my bridesmaids to make our cake topper, and one of my other good friends made a “here comes the bride” sign for Timothy’s nephews to carry down the aisle. Finally, I borrowed a ton of china plates of all different patterns and colors from a good family friend, and then went to Goodwill and bought more to ensure that each of our guests would have a unique place setting for their meal at the reception.
WHAT WAS THE MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT OF YOUR WEDDING DAY?
Oh man, there were quite a few! I distinctly remember walking down the aisle with my mom and brother thinking to myself, “I can’t believe I’m about to get married!” And then after the ceremony as Timothy and I were walking away from everyone, I remember looking at him and saying, “Did that really just happen?!” We were both grinning ear-to-ear. It was all so surreal. One more memorable moment was during the wedding ceremony when my cousin was giving us the Charge. He hadn’t told us anything about what he was going to say, so you can imagine my surprise when he incorporated my dad and his love of baseball and had everyone literally stand up and “charge” us (“Duh nuh nuh nuh nuh nuh…CHARGE!!!”…just like at a baseball game) into our marriage with their fists up in the air!
ANY LAST BITS OF ADVICE?
Don’t be afraid to ask for help! After doing the majority of wedding planning myself, I would definitely advise future brides to delegate tasks to their friends and family members to take some stress off of themselves. My sister kept telling me to delegate, and I realized that I am just not a very good delegator! I guess I am such a perfectionist that I thought I had to do everything myself. Towards the end of all of the wedding planning, I finally started asking some of my good friends for help, and each one of them was so happy to pitch in! So I would strongly suggest to delegate tasks from the beginning, and then wedding planning will be much more relaxing.