Nick and Brandon were visiting Nashville when they decided to do a photoshoot in Centennial Park. Centennial Park is a hidden gem in Nashville. This quiet, serene and tranquil park in the heart of Music City is incredible. It’s the perfect place for a photoshoot, but also for a picnic, a place to take a walk, a place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
We met on Facebook in Nick’s hometown (Twin Falls, Idaho). Brandon had moved there for a job (on-air meteorologist) and met a guy (Daniel) who Nick was mutual friends with on Facebook. We connected through this mutual friend.
We dated for a little over two years before we got engaged. Day 800 of our relationship was the day that Brandon popped the question. We got engaged on March 5, 2015 in Santa Cruz, California on a chartered sailboat at sunset Thursday March 5th 2015 (Day 800):
On Thursday morning I woke up at 5:45 am to head to work. I needed to be at work early because Brandon had a work board meeting he was supposed to be in attendance at 7:00 am. I woke up to what I thought was a normal day, Brandon and I proceeded to get ready as normal and he told me I should wear something nice. I put on a nice pair of grey slacks, a light blue button up shirt and a pair of grey chukka boots I received as a Christmas gift. It was going to be a long day for us both at work with meetings and Chamber stuff so we took the dog with us and headed to work. I arrived to work at 6:30 am and was the first one to arrive. I started my day as normal going through emails and responding to them. I had a meeting with a client at 9:00 am to build a website for them and it seemed like the clock was moving so slow. My co-workers started to arrive at work at about 7:30 am and were all asking me why I was there so early and how long I had been there. I explained to them that I thought Brandon and I were going somewhere for the weekend and that I wouldn’t be at work on Friday.
My morning continued as usual, responding to potential customers and completing tasks at hand. At approximately 8:40 the doorbell rang at my work and I got up to answer the door (our building is locked so visitors have to be let in). I walk up to the door and no one was there, I open the door to look outside and there stood Brandon with a pair of green Hurley shorts, a white Hurley hoodie, a grey V-neck t-shirt and a pair of shoes he had recently bought me. He pushes his way in and said “go change, fold your clothes nicely and don’t ask questions.” I proceeded to the bathroom and my mind began to race…I was not sure what he was up to but I knew I was in for a surprise! I got changed and came out of the bathroom, he said, “get your stuff and finish up anything you need to because your leaving work.” I finished up a couple things I was working on, gathered my things and we left.
We got out to the car and I started to panic, I had been working on a little surprise of my own that Brandon had no idea about. We had talked about getting married and I knew that we would soon be engaged so I wanted to order Brandon’s engagement ring and surprise him with it when the special day came. I was going to pickup Brandon’s ring from FedEx that afternoon when I got off work but him picking me up threw a kink in my plan. I told him that I needed to go back to Twin because I had been working on something for his birthday that I had to take care of and that it couldn’t wait. Brandon was very distraught but quickly rushed us back to Twin so I could go run my errand which was getting his ring he had no idea existed. I drive to FedEx, secure the ring in my pocket and drive home where Brandon is waiting in the driveway with the car running.
Now we leave Twin and start heading toward Boise. I ask him what we are doing and he said, “We are going to the airport.” Since I delayed us having to go run my special errand we are now running behind and he has to drive very fast to Boise. I decide to kick back, relax and try not to ask a bunch of questions. He starts to ask me if I know where were going and I told him I was just along for the ride. We make it to the Boise Airport with about 30 minutes until our flight leaves. We weren’t checking luggage but that was definitely cutting it right down to the wire. We get to our gate, board our flight and at that point I figure out we are going to San Jose, California. I start to wonder what he is up to and why we would be flying into San Jose of all places. Brandon has never been to California so I was just confused on where we would be going. Our flight was very smooth and arrived in San Jose early. We get of the flight, claim our luggage plane -side and head to get our rental car. He rented us a 2015 Ford Mustang Convertible that happened to be bright yellow! He asks me to drive and he starts giving me directions on where we are going. Talk about traffic!
We arrive in Santa Cruz after a pleasant drive. The top on the convertible was still up and I had never driven a convertible so I found the first gas station I could to let the roof down. We take off and drive to our hotel, which was the Dreams Inn in Santa Cruz right on the beach! At this point I am so excited after getting to leave work early and being in California where it was 75 degrees that afternoon. We got settled into the hotel and went to grab some lunch and kick back for a little bit. We came back to the hotel to change and head off on an “activity” he had planned for us. We start driving and he tells me he needs to make a quick stop, as we pull into Whole Foods. I think were going on a picnic on the beach or something, I’m really confused. I sit in the car and patiently wait for him to come out. A young boy and his mom walk out of Whole Foods and the mom says to the boy “look, it’s a banana car, you drive around in that car and shoot your banana gun at people” as if I couldn’t hear them sitting in our bright yellow convertible.
After leaving Whole Foods we take off driving and he is giving me directions. He usually navigates when we travel and I drive (I was born to drive!) We pull into a parking lot, which appears to be a marina. Brandon is on his phone reading an email and telling us what we need to do. We went and sat on a bench we were instructed to wait on and this guy comes up one of the docks to get us. He introduces himself as Todd and takes us down to a sailboat. Brandon then tells me he rented us a sailboat and we are going out on the ocean for our “activity”. We get settled in on the boat and neither one of us had ever been sailing before so we both weren’t sure what to expect. Todd sails us out into the ocean and starts talking to us about where we are from and all kinds of random things. Brandon puts in a CD and we start listening to some new songs and favorites of ours. We are sailing out on the Pacific Ocean in beautiful California in 75-degree weather with the love of my life and nothing in the world could put me in a bad mood at this point.
I go below deck with Brandon, where he hands me an Honest Iced Tea for each of us and a cookie for a snack from his Whole Foods bag. We go back up deck and start enjoying the views from the sailboat. Todd is cruising by marine life and the famous pier in Santa Cruz. The view was incredible and the company was even better. I thought Brandon was going to pop the question but after an hour went by of being on the boat with Todd and Brandon I decided it wasn’t happening today. Brandon excuses himself and goes below deck. The sun is getting ready to set in the next 30 minutes. He returns carrying a book with the saying “The Best Things In Life Are Made With Love” on the front cover. I immediately open the book and start flipping through the pages. The first page reads:
From the 1st day I met you and took you to Chili’s for dinner, I knew that you were the one…
The other pages have numbers on them of how many days we had been together when we made various memories over the last two years. I start crying at the sweet things that were written in this book and laugh at some of our funniest moments. I begin to have this feeling like I am on cloud nine and that Brandon and I with the ocean surrounding us are lost in our own little world. I make it through the book and on one of the last pages of the book it reads:
I Love You Because:
You care about others…
At this point I am balling and I know what he is about to ask me, I was so ready for him to ask the question because I already knew my answer! I said yes! We then cried and held each other (might even have smooched a couple of times). Then we opened up a bottle of wine and had sushi he had bought at Whole Foods. I think he knows me a little too well, surprising me with more things I like.
I waited until it was almost bedtime and I told Brandon that we should go for a walk on the beach. We were both exhausted (especially Brandon from being up at 4:00 am getting us ready for this amazing trip). We went for a walk on the beach in the dark and as we were about to head back up to our room I told Brandon to hold on and that I needed to talk to him. At this point the ring was burning a hole in my pocket and I wanted him to have it so we could both proudly walk around and show our commitment to each other to others. He was so surprised and his reaction showed that since it was then his turn to cry while I held him tight. He figured out my urgent errand in Twin before we left for the airport was to go pickup his ring.
It was an amazing weekend in Santa Cruz and San Francisco and it will be a weekend that neither Brandon nor I will ever forget.
Day 800 was one of the best days of my life and it will be a day that I will never forget! I love you Brandon Redmond and I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you.
We got married in Sun Valley, Idaho on September 24th, 2016 in the presence of 130 of our closest friends and family.