They met online, dated and fell in love. Within a year, they were living together; two Christmases later, a treasure hunt led to a life-changing wedding proposal, this is Chris and Dan's love story.
Dan and I are both from Essex and originally only lived 30 minutes from each other. We met on the internet over four years ago. People were initially skeptical about it, but we got to know each other properly before we even met face-to-face! I'll always encourage people to investigate internet dating because I'm now the happiest man in Essex!
When we first started seeing each other I didn't drive, so Dan, who was very dedicated, became our designated dates driver. That quickly changed though, and he encouraged me to pass my test!
It only took a year for us to decide that moving in felt right; we had even discussed the future and knew that marriage was on the cards, but I had no idea that Dan would propose when he did.
It was Christmas Eve and Dan was really nervous, but brushed it off as nerves about cooking for 12 people the next day. At 4am he woke me and begged me to get up. Begrudgingly I did.
Dan had organised a treasure hunt around the house, with my present at the end. The clues eventually led me upstairs into our loft room, there I found Dan holding a string of lights that read Will You Marry Me?' I said Yes!" straight away, I was over the moon!
Gay marriage was legalised three months later, and we were overjoyed about it. We both wanted a totally relaxed day, scrapping most of the rules but keeping the ones we liked. Considering gay weddings were relatively new, we wanted to take full advantage and make it up as we went along. We also decided that as we were getting married in a converted barn, and are quite outdoorsy anyway, we would implement a country wedding' theme for everything, from our venue to our suits.
We had around 100 guests at our ceremony and wedding breakfast and roughly 150 for the evening. Choosing who to invite was actually one of the hardest tasks you know a lot more people than you think you do!
We were so lucky with the weather, it was crisp and sunny throughout the ceremony which was handy considering it was held outside!
Overall the wedding was just how we'd imagined and planned it, it was perfect for us. We had a lot of feedback from our guests and all said how they'd enjoyed it, which was great to hear. It really was the happiest day of my life and I envy anyone that is due to do it! At the ends of the day just take a deep breath and enjoy it!