How did you and your significant other meet?
We met each other in math class on our first days of high school; we had several classes together and became good friends, however we didn't actually start dating until our freshman year at the University of Georgia.
As a couple, what are your interests/hobbies?
We love College Football, cooking & cocktailing, coaching (basketball and baseball)
When did you know your partner was “the one” and you wanted to get married?
Ryan: "pretty early on... when we were friends in high school people always joked that we would get married one day... and those jokes turned out to be pretty accurate. From our first real date onwards, I always knew that this relationship could be the one, however we definitely had a lot more to learn about each other and see if we had what it took to have a successful marriage... we were blessed to be able to grow together thought our time in college and start our lives together.
Hannah: "There was never one specific moment where I knew he was the one, it was watching him grow into his own person in college and how well he loved the people around him."
What is one of your favorite things about your partner?
Ryan: "She's as close to perfect as any human can be and drives me to be more like her... She's smart, beautiful, and has an amazing heart which she shows on a daily basis
Hannah: "The first thing that caught my attention when we met was his incredible bright, blue eyes. Then after getting to know him I saw just how much he cared for the people around him. He always leaves people and places better than they were before. He shows me so much grace and love each day, it inspires to be a better person."
What was your proposal like (was the ring a surprise or was it collaborative)?
Ryan: "It was somewhat of a surprise... Our senior year of college, we knew an engagement and marriage was on the horizon. I always said we needed to wait until we both had jobs lined up, and Hannah must have been getting pretty tired of waiting because she managed to get a job after about a week after her recruiting period started. Me being slightly surprised by this quick turnaround, I scrambled to ask for her family's permission to marry her, go ring shopping and plan out the proposal. Luckily, I had some great help and some time off from school so I was able to put together a surprise proposal on the University of Georgia Campus.Hannah: "During our senior year we were having those conversations of what life after college together was going to look like and we knew we were going to engaged. I did not want to pick out the ring, instead I wanted Ryan to pick something out that he thought would represent us and our relationship because that would be more special to me. He did the most wonderful job (and was a very wise man and brought his mom along for the selection process)!"
Tell us about your wedding (if it has happened yet).
Our original wedding planned for June 2020 was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and we had to postpone our celebration/reception until June 2021. However, we knew we still wanted to go ahead and get married on our original date so we had a small elopement/ceremony at our venue with just our immediate families in attendance and a livestream going out to all of our invited guests. The day was lovely (and hot) and we were so grateful to be able to have a small, intimate ceremony while looking forward to celebrating with our extended families and friends in 2021.
Why did you decide to work with Balefire?
We knew Jamie and team would be able to help us both narrow down our options and craft the perfect bands, and that's exactly what they did! Ryan wanted something unique and special, as well and was inspired by some of Jamie's other designs that had the landscape of the venue engraved on the ring. Ryan then had the idea of have a map of Athens, Georgia (our college town and the city we are getting married in) engraved onto his ring that has our favorite and most memorable spots. Both rings were special to begin with, but Balefire took it to the next level. We LOVE telling others about our rings and how wonderful Balefire was to work with.
What advice would you give to other couples shopping for wedding or engagement rings?
Small businesses/jewelers were incredibly helpful throughout both the engagement ring/wedding band shopping processes. We knew practically nothing about diamonds and jewelry as we started shopping, but learned so much from the people helping us at these small businesses. I'd highly recommend starting small if you're feeling overwhelmed!
photos: Once Like a Spark Photography