9 Years || The Story Of How We Met

In Love, Personal

June 20, 2018

Today is our 9th wedding anniversary!! 9 years! Crazy!! It’s hard to believe that Will and I have already been married 9 whole years! It feels like we met just yesterday, yet I also feel like I’ve known Will my whole life!

For this year’s anniversary post, I thought I’d share “our story of how we met” with you guys :) It’s fun walking down our relationship memory lane and alot of you guys have asked for this story over the past year, so let’s do it!

(Photo by Anna Shackleford)

May 2007 – I was 20 years old. My family started making plans to move back up to Virginia from Alabama… When I heard about the move, something inside me felt like I wasn’t supposed to move back to Virginia. I loved Alabama and wanted to stay. So, one Saturday morning at the breakfast table, I shared with my parents that I would like to stay behind in Alabama. Surprisingly, they both got on board and “gave me their blessing” for some strange reason. I’m still amazed at how easy and quick that conversation was. I guess it was in God’s plan :)

October 2007 – The last family member left Alabama to move to Virginia. I was working full time and in school full time, living paycheck to paycheck in an apartment with my friend, Mallery, who was a student at UAH. To help make ends meet, I started doing photoshoots for $50 (the first time I started charging for photography… the rest is history!)

Late November/Early December 2007 – I receive a Facebook friend request from one of Mallery’s college friends. His name is Will. He says something along the lines of “Mallery is pretty cool and you’re her roommate, so you must be pretty cool too!”  I saw that this Will guy and I had alot of mutual friends. I accept the friend request.

Early December 2007 – I start to wonder if maybe I should move up to Virginia in May once Spring semester was over. I love Alabama, but I do miss my family and finances are taking a toll. I become more set on making the move back up to Virginia in the Spring.

Early December 2007 – I get a Facebook message from this Will guy saying that he just saw that we were both going to be at a college student end of the semester hangout at none other than Chuck-E-Cheese. Haha! He states that we’ll finally get to meet in person! We chat back and forth on Facebook. Nothing too flirty, just witty banter.

December 9th, 2007 – It’s the night of the hangout… I arrive at Chuck-E-Cheese and the first person I see at the entrance is Will. He flashes me a BIG smile (the smile that still makes me weak in the knees 10+ years later) and pulls me in for the biggest bear hug ever — before we had ever even spoken a word to each other (I love that that was our first in-person interaction! His hugs are still some of my favorite things:) We basically instantly become best friends and hang out playing games and laughing all night long.

(We obviously fell in love at first sight at Chuck-E-Cheese solely based on our fashion sense;-)

The days following that first time we met, we went to an 80’s party (where we technically had our first dance together). A week or so after that, we went on an unintentional first date when my roomie had to bail on our dinner plans because of traffic in Nashville. We were already at the restaurant waiting for our table when we got her text, so we just went with it. It was a semi-awkward, but fun dinner!  A few days later, I went up to Virginia for Christmas for almost 3 weeks…. and Will and I texted every day… and talked on the phone for over 36 hours total!

After I got back to Alabama, we went on our REAL first date a week or so later, then officially started dating right around my birthday in late January!

In the following weeks/months, I Love You’s were exchanged, and I started realizing that I didn’t want to move back up to Virginia after all. We started talking seriously about the future just a few months into dating and we both knew we’d found “the one”.

We were engaged in October 2008, then married in June 2009… a year and a half after we met :)

One day, I’ll have to do a post about our proposal story and maybe our wedding day story. Maybe on our 10th and 11th anniversaries ;-)


Happy Anniversary, Will! I love you more and more every day… and I’m not just saying that. It’s the truth. I am so thankful for you and who you are. You are everything I could’ve hoped for in a husband and best friend — even more than I dreamed, actually. Is our marriage perfect? No way. Are we two totally different people? YEP. We’ve had our days where we get on each others’ nerves or frustrate each other, but I can honestly say that I love our marriage… flaws and all. You bring out the best in me and I promise I will continue trying to bring out the best in you every day. I promise I will continue to support you and encourage you. To have and to hold you. And to love and cherish you for the next 99 years.

People are surprised when I tell them we’ve been married for 9 years and yet we not only still deeply love each other, but we still really like each other. Like, alot. You are my absolute favorite person to be around. Thank you for choosing me to spend the rest of your life with.

I love you more than the moon! <3

(Photo by Ais Portraits)

  1. Jordan

    June 20th, 2018 at 2:18 PM

    I love this story!!! Happy Anniversary you two!!

  2. Pamela Huff

    June 20th, 2018 at 4:06 PM

    Happy anniversary to you both!! I remember meeting the UAH peeps around the time you guys started dating, I think!! Such a cool story and progression of your love!! God bless you — Have the BEST time celebrating!!

  3. Vicki

    June 20th, 2018 at 8:55 PM

    I seriously can’t wait for the wedding day stories and pictures! 💗

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destination wedding photographer, boutique photo editor, and coach to photographers

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