dacey-and-jess_largeWith a Little Help From Our Friends
An entourage of friends help create a scavenger hunt that leads to happily ever after.

Jess and I met in July of 2008 at a poker party hosted by a mutual friend. Jess walked into the room and I was fixated; not only was she beautiful, but she spoke with intelligence and wit—a true Southern belle. We attempted to play poker, but admit we both lost our shirts (not literally!); clearly, neither of us were all that interested in our cards.

We spoke as if we’d known one another for years. Our friends in attendance that night still enjoy mocking our conversation: “Oh my gosh … you love the Steelers? … You had a boob reduction, as well? … You love to breathe air, too?” They knew, even in that first meeting, we’d make a life together, someday (even if Jess and I were oblivious).

After dating for nearly two and a half years and buying the ring of Jess’s dreams, I created a plan to propose on July 2, 2011. I enlisted four of our closest friends to help and had each write up a clue that would take us to five places that were special to Jess and I in, what Jess believed to be, a scavenger hunt for a housewarming gift.

Our friend arrived at our house around 9:30 a.m. with the first clue. At each Atlantan location was another friend with another clue. Before the afternoon was complete, we’d seen Smith’s Olde Bar, special because it is a Steelers and Alabama bar; 3 Legged Cowboy where we loved to two-step, Après Diem where we went to dinner on our first date, Piedmont Park where we love to spend time with our friends, and finally the Botanical Gardens which is where we had our first date.

At the Botanical Gardens, I removed my blindfold and led the group to an area off the beaten path where we were completely surrounded by beauty. When we were both instructed to take off our blindfolds, I was on bended knee. I’ll never forget the look of pure surprise and happiness on her face.

We are getting married Friday April 13, 2012 (our dating anniversary is also a Friday the 13th) in Niagara Falls, NY and I can’t wait.

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