Today we are kicking off the 2018 Bride Blogger Series with Betsy and Tim’s engagement session. These two are getting married next weekend! After the wedding Betsy will be looking back on her planning process and share insights on the blog.
FROM THE BRIDE:
We did two engagement shoots because our photographer, Moose of Blu Moose Photography, is amazing and he offered. Our first session was in September on Tim’s parents’ land in Highland, Wisconsin. Our second session was in December on the windiest day of the year. Moose came with us to Summer’s Christmas Tree Farm while we cut down a Christmas tree.
OUR LOVE STORY:
Two weeks after Tim and I met I told my dad, “I don’t know where this is going but I think he might be my best friend.” We’ll get married a month shy of our five year anniversary but we started planning for forever pretty much from the beginning, either that or we’re both the same kind of crazy.
Tim and I have worked together for almost as long as we’ve been together. We started our first business together just a few months into dating. That business pivoted and pivoted again into what we do now, which is the perfect amalgamation of our skill sets. We own DwellHop Real Estate and DwellHop Construction where we use his background in real estate and construction and my background in design to help people find and create homes of their own. (Insert HGTV joke here.) Sometimes when we tell people that we work together everyday they say “I could never work with my spouse, we’d kill each other,” but we can’t imagine it any other way. Early on when we first met we talked about how we wanted a partner in life, someone to truly share our dreams with and we’ve found that. We support each other’s dreams by building them together.
Getting married took a backseat to building our businesses and our life together. When we finally decided we were ready to get married we spent a year brainstorming ideas and pricing out options. I have spreadsheets and Pinterest boards for everything from an Oktoberfest themed farm wedding for 250 people to an intimate downtown dinner for 80. The first venue we considered was HotelRed because the bar at HotelRed is “our spot”. We celebrated our first Valentine’s Day there and go often enough that most of the staff knows our names. It even played a part in us getting engaged. We really struggled to wrap our heads around the cost of a wedding and a lot of the options we considered were based around trying to bring the cost down. After a year of considering other options we finally realized that our first instinct was right.
Tim finally proposed after a year of planning together. We ordered my engagement ring the day we signed the contract with our venue. He still managed to make it a surprise and in a way that was very “us”. Tim proposed at the Observatory on campus where we were suppose to have our third date but still hadn’t made it to. He wanted to be able to say he “proposed on our third date four years later”. We’d gone to the city design commission meeting to see the new design for HotelRed and Tim’s plan had been for us to go to dinner then take a walk on campus. After the meeting, Tim was pushing for us to go to dinner on the Square, but, as so many engagement stories go, I unknowingly foiled his plans by pushing to go somewhere else because it was so busy downtown. After dinner we went to the Union and Tim suggested a walk on campus. About halfway up the hill to the Observatory I remarked how dark it was. Tim hung his head and sighed, “I know,”. The Observatory is only open on perfect nights, with no clouds and low humidity. The only place they announce if the Observatory will be closed is on Twitter. Tim had been checking all day but apparently someone forgot to post. The doors were locked so after a good shake to be sure Tim proposed outside them. Then we went to HotelRed for a drink to celebrate because, of course.
We’re so excited to share Madison and HotelRed with our guests. Planning has focused on making sure our guests have fun and that we have as many opportunities to see everyone as possible. Our wedding website’s headline is “Happiness is best when shared”. We love socializing together so our wedding is one big chance for us to do that with all of the people we love. We’ve casual events planned on Thursday and Friday night as well. Our favorite memory from planning is the Sunday we spent five hours watching our band play in a tiny bar while imagining how much fun they will be at our wedding. We can’t wait to celebrate the next step in our life together and to party with all of our favorite people.