Heidi is my boyfriend’s (Huck) cousin and was one of the first family members I met on that side of the family! I met Phil the next day and I remember thinking how cute they were together! I didn’t know either of them before they met but I do know that they compliment each other so well and love each other with every ounce they have. I was honored to be a guest at their wedding and it was such a beautiful day! Below you can read how they met, the cutest engagement story I’ve read thus far and all about the special pieces that made their wedding so special!
How We Met – He Had me at “Hola”:
Phil and I had a couple connections that brought us together, both of which focused around my sister, Nancy Carrie. Phil was volunteering as a youth leader for our church’s youth group and he was also helping out with the musical at my sister’s high school. Nancy Carrie is the one who brought us together. She encouraged me to reach out to Phil even though I was reluctant to do so. After all, why should I make the first move? After some prompting I texted Phil to which he replied, “Hola Chica!” His sense of humor and charm are what won me over so quickly.
Just over a year into our relationship, I (Phil) took a youth ministry job in South Carolina. Exactly 430 miles from Harrisonburg. And while the distance seemed daunting I knew it was the right step to make personally and for our relationship. I moved away in October of 2013 and, very quickly, knew I needed Heidi with me for this new chapter.
Planning an engagement 7 hours away is pretty easy knowing I wouldn’t have to sneak around and constantly hide things from Heidi. So I planned for Valentine’s weekend. Cliche I know, but I was right for us. I was already making a trip to Harrisonburg to see Heidi so I why not?! The only hiccup? A storm that dumped over 2 feet of snow over Harrisonburg the day before my plan was to be executed. I scrambled to come up with another option, and quickly realized the answer – the place it should have been all along – was right in front of me.
The morning of February 15 is a blur. I drove to “the spot” to make sure the snow was cleared (plowed away), made a run to Target for some last minute supplies, and made my way to the Logan home. I told Heidi we’d be going to lunch at one of our favorite places…Cracker Barrel. After all, where else does a couple of 25 year-olds eat on a Saturday?! I somehow convinced Heidi to wear the dress she was planning on wearing that night to a show we were going to. **Heidi would have killed me if she weren’t “dressed to kill” when I proposed.** And off we went.
I didn’t eat very much at lunch due to nerves, which prompted Heidi to ask if I was ‘okay’ multiple times. She’s a worrier by nature – something I’ve come to find cute and, at times, entertaining. We paid and hopped in the Jeep. The sky was so clear and blue that day that I told her we should visit our favorite “spot”. It’s a place we visited weekly when I lived in Harrisonburg – the top of the parking deck at the Forbes Center. We would go up on evenings and watch the sunset thanks to it’s great view of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Quad. She was hesitant to stop but I was able to talk her into “just a quick stop”.
As we made our way to the top of the deck, my heart started racing. In just a few minutes my life would change forever.
I managed to distract her long enough to pass our friends, Chris and Anna, who were camped out in their car to snap photos of the big moment, and parked the car. I don’t think the car was fully stopped before I blurted out, “Are you getting out?!” My nerves were getting ahead of me. She hesitated but finally gave in to stand with me in the freezing cold wind. She was shivering, my teeth were chattering. She humored me for a bit and then said, “Okay let’s go it’s freezing!”
It was now or never.
I don’t remember everything I said to her, but a lot of it doesn’t matter. What mattered was that in that moment I asked a girl who was far out of my league and far kinder and gracious than I deserved to be my wife. And she said yes!
Our friends came out of hiding and more photos were taken. We made our way back to her parents’ house where our families were waiting to celebrate. We all went out to dinner and then went to see the musical at Harrisonburg High School, a place that brought us together. I’ll never forget the feeling of introducing Heidi as my fiance. Surreal but familiar. Overwhelming but comforting.
October 11, 2014
I knew from the start where I wanted to get married – First Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg. It’s the church my parents were married in, the church where I was baptized and grew up. This church also held a special meaning for us because, at different times, we both served as youth interns there, and Phil had served as the Youth Assistant before moving to South Carolina. This old, historic church had been a home to both of us, so what better way to start our marriage than in that sanctuary.
It was a cool and overcast day with spots of rain which made me grateful we had chosen an indoor venue. My girls and I got ready in my family home while Phil and his groomsmen got dressed at the church. Our colors were black and white with accents of gold. We did all of the decor ourselves, including the reception space. Though we did have an amazing wedding party who helped us out the night before!
Our ceremony was very traditional, down to the serving of communion to all of our guests. My sister/MOH, sang two songs during the ceremony, and there were many homages to our love of Disney. One of the most special aspects of our wedding was that I wore the dress my mother wore. It was also the dress her sisters and their mother wore. It was about that connection we now share, and made even sweeter since I had both my dad and mom walk me down the aisle. I made a few alterations to make it my own, but I am so glad I chose to go with that gown. It’s something I will always cherish.
After our ceremony we made our way to Spotswood Country Club for our reception. If there is any advice I can give couples, it is to take moments to take it all in! The day and evening go by in a flash and it will all seem like a blur. We ate and danced and celebrated with the people we love most. That is what makes your big day worthwhile – the people you share it with.
At the end of the evening we hopped in the car, stopped by my house to change and drove to Richmond where we stayed the night before taking off for our honeymoon the next morning. There are moments I wish I could relive that day to be able to take in all of the smaller moments. Because what a day it was! God blessed Phil and I with family and friends who surrounded us with love and support as we stepped out on a wonderful adventure together. I’m forever grateful to everyone who helped make us who we are!
We have been married just short of four years and in that time we have fit a lot of “life” into our life. We lived in South Carolina for the first two years. We made some incredible friends and shared memories we will cherish forever while we were there. After learning that Heidi was expecting our first child, we made the tough decision to relocate back to Harrisonburg. This brought us closer to our families and the friends we’d missed while away, but it also gave us a fresh start.
We, by no means, have it all figured out. There are days when we are tired and cranky. There are moments when our kids push us to the brink of insanity. But those small, fleeting moments are always dissipated by laughter and cuddles, date nights and road trips.
Our relationship started with a witty text message and a box of pumpkin muffins. And I like to think it was those two things that won her over. And now, nearly five years into marriage and two babies later, we still find moments to laugh and be silly, to dance in the kitchen, and to celebrate the beautiful chaos that fills our home. And the occasional pumpkin muffin helps too.
Photo taken by Bob Adamek
Photo taken by Amy Cherry
Photo taken by Bob Adamek
Photo taken by Amy Cherry
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