I am so excited to share Amanda and Tom’s story! When Amanda sent me a message asking about engagement photos I was so excited because of her excitement! She sent me a LONG message of how they met! Then I couldn’t believe it, but Tom wanted to share their proposal story! I was so excited because most guys don’t have much to say…I usually get a shortened version or a sentence or two! Amanda sent me Tom’s story and it was even LONGER than hers!!! WOW! I loved reading every second of their beautiful stories and I hope you all love it as much as I do! After I met these two amazing people in person not only was it SOOO apparent that they are insanely in love, but they are also so great together! Amanda even was worried that she was being too excited by messaging me too much and I love her allllll the more for that! She even asked me if they could bring their dog, Ranger, to their session! OF COURSE I said YES!!! I am a very excited person, as most people know, so it was GREAT to meet someone that matches my excitement and enthusiasm! Drew and I had so much fun with these two and Ranger! We threw some snow balls in the air for him to catch and we got a KILLER ring shot on Ranger’s nose! Thank you both for being such amazing people and bringing your awesome dog!
I am going to now share both stories with you all! Enjoy and try not to cry!
“Tom and I met almost 5 years ago by happen chance the first week in March 2014. I had been living in Great Falls MT my whole life and things were just stagnant, I felt like I was in a rut. So I decided to leave everything behind and move to Washington to pursue my dream to become a nurse. I needed work done on my car before the big moving day so I brought my car to a buddies shop. I opened the door to bring my keys in, and my whole world changed. There was a new young handsome man working behind the counter, I had never seen him before. As soon as we made eye contact, it was a truly serendipitous moment. Something I had never experienced before. I walked up to the counter and I could barely speak as I looked into his ice blue eyes. Little did I know, he was actually experiencing the same butterflies. It was the most awkward, yet satisfying first conversation. I honestly never wanted it to end. Long story short, my car was ready to be picked up a few short days later. When I came back to the shop, I could tell he wanted to ask me something and he seemed so nervous. He finally asked me to go on a date with him, before I moved. I almost said no because I didn’t want anything changing my mind from going to Washington, I already had a place to live, a job waiting for me, and I had my mind made up. There was something about him that I just couldn’t pass up, and in that moment his charming self convinced me to say yes to one date. March 26th, 2014 was the big day, and we were supposed to go to dinner. Well, I had gone to the gun and antique show in Great Falls earlier that day and happened to eat a hot dog from the concessions. I didn’t think much of it until I was getting ready for my date later that night, when I suddenly got extremely nauseous, sweaty, and fatigued. I was leaving for Washington in a couple days so I didn’t want to miss this date. Usually I would have just called and cancelled but no, Tom was different. I finally met up with him, barely ate my food, tried talking with him between running to the bathroom, and pretended like everything was ok. To this day it is still one of the hardest things I have done, I was sweating bullets feeling sick as a dog but I didn’t want to ruin our short time together. He walked me to my car at the end of the evening and we never even kissed. Which I was more than fine with in my nauseous state, but I truly had never met such a gentleman. The moving day came and he kissed me goodbye, my stomach dropped, my heart fluttered, and a trembled for a moment. Honestly I had never felt that. He never asked me to stay, he didn’t want to change my happiness or change my plans for my future. I never thought leaving Great Falls MT would be so hard. From the moment I said goodbye, everything inside of me screamed “stay!” I made it to Washington and I was trying to settle in, but every day was a little harder. I figured not seeing him would make it easier but my heart only grew fonder in his absence. I remember sitting on my bed one morning feeling as empty as I did in Great Falls before I decided to move. Realizing that home truly is where the heart is, and my heart was back in Montana with a man named Tom. Once again I packed up my car and drove “home” where I belonged. We moved in a week later and have been “us” ever since.”
“Amanda and I have enjoyed each other for just under five years now. We moved in together only a week after her return from Washington, and only knowing each other two weeks prior to that. We have always loved seeing new places, experiencing new things, enjoying new cuisine, etc, and aspiring for greater things for ourselves. The biggest holiday we love most with one another, to honor or wants, has always been December 31st. New Year’s Eve. Where we vacation to a new warm and cozy place, and just get away. This is the time where we have always locked ourselves away and expressed our aspirations together for the next year, and just get to totally immersed ourselves in one another. When we first moved in together she told me of her ‘five-year rule’ where she believed that in order to truly know someone she needed to date them for five years, because any shorter is not enough time for someone to change, or reveal, all there is to know about themselves, and therefore impossible to accurately develop confidence that the decision to marry a person, she would ultimately make, was sufficient . Yes, she’s quite the logical woman, fighting can be a real challenge at times, and while no winner is declared we both know where the favor lands. I lovingly accepted her rule but knew that this decree would be vastly overwhelmed by my good looks, charm, and dependability. So…four years later… crushing debt revealed, and flaws revealed. I was nervous about which ring would be the right one for the woman I would spend the rest of my life with. I mean after four years I better know her! I honestly could not find the right ring none of them fit her unique personality, loving embrace, and endless beauty. Nothing I saw reflected her. So, during a quiet afternoon running errands together we stopped by her favorite jewelry store to ‘look around’, I casually suggested looking at rings just for fun to see what it looked like on her hand, well we started at the bridal bands from the most affordable section, and slowly worked our way up in both extravagancy and price! Until the last display, of the last case closest at the to store entrance to draw in all the mouthwatering would-be brides to imagine their fairytale ending. Her eyes lit up, her pulse quickened, and the ring had brilliant shine, sparkle, and expertly designed. It could blind astronauts in the right light! She sheepishly asked to see it, and there it was a Cinderella slipper in circular form! I knew that this ring was not just a piece of jewelry to her, but a symbol of the love we’d share forever. It would carry the greatest moments of our lives together and serve as a reminder of those cherished memories when times would become tough. This band was lovingly forged to carry our relationship for the rest of our lives, but the wait of the price was just to heavy for our income, and schooling. As I took a new career opportunity which took me to the opposite end of the State, and her needing to stay to complete her nursing school. As the year came to an end we become weary. We would reunite once every couple of weeks, and our usual trips where sacrificed to reserve time/income to see one another. It was difficult, but she knew that this was my dream, and wanted me to pursue it. However, we would not compromise on your annual resolutions and time away from everything to be with each other. Thus, we decided to fore-go Christmas presents to one another to spend our new-years together. We found a hot spring nestled in paradise MT, where a party would ensue with live music, and fireworks to bring in the new year, and as this was our time together to make our annual vows to each other for aspirations. My secret resolution was making this wonderful woman my Fiancé. I called up the resort, and revealed to them my plans, and everlasting memory started to take form. In the week prior to our trip I was home unexpectedly and asked her Father for her hand. He accepted me, as his own, and for this I will always be grateful. We went away for two days to the hot springs. We arrived, and immediately immersed ourselves in the pool, letting the warm waters expunge our worries, and troubles from the year away, and just took in each other again. We made plans to each at their fine dining establishment and blew our budget on the dinner and drinks and catching up. Neither of us cared, as this was time where we could really be together. However, I did sneak away during dinner, under the pretense that, we needed money for the shuttle that was taking us back later that evening, to finalize some engagement logistics. I did receive quite the text from her about leaving at dinner alone, and one I hoped she would forgive me later. After our meal the alcohol’s effect had worked, it had soothed some of my jitters, and I was now feeling pretty collected. We traveled over to the event, where we enjoyed each other’s company more and of course to have a few more drinks to get in the festive spirit…again mine to slow my fluctuating heart rate, from swells of anxiety of the untold events about to transpire. It was at this moment that the resort texted me that the plan I had originally set-in motion was not possible, as the photographer was unexpectedly taken away, and the plan to present the ring during the fireworks spectacle was not possible. I excused myself to the bathroom and met with the event coordinator to plan our next move. I got extremely lucky as the event coordinator doubled for our photographer of the moment, and she was actually a previous photojournalist, and offered her services to assist us. When I returned to the table, I told my lovely girlfriend of almost five years, that on my way to the bathroom there was an area where we could take pictures, with new year’s garb, and thought it would be a fun photo for us to remember. She accepted, thank goodness. We left our table to take pictures in front of a winter backdrop, with a table next to us and a tree decorated silver, and white lights illuminating, and setting the winter wonderland glow of the scene. We had taken a couple of photos where a million thoughts where running through my mind, and honestly none of them pertained to the silly poses we were doing. Suddenly this became all too real, and I starting to freeze. It was at this moment the event coordinator directed me like a marionet doll to keep up the failing facade. Finally, I snapped myself out of it just enough to lean down on one knee as she started to pose for the next photo, and I couldn’t even speak. I just held my hand out with the box open, with the ring of her dreams, and luckily, she turned to me for a kiss. It was then that I saw the same face of love I’ve known for years, through the tears, thankfully she said “yes.” I knew that I would beat her Five-year rule, and luckily I get to spend the rest of our eternity together.”
Bozeman, Billings, Red Lodge, Kalispell – Montana
Cody, Jackson Hole, Powell – Wyoming
Worldwide Wedding Photographer
Tabby Miller Photography