The Bridal Babe Blog
Amanda Middleton Pt. 1
Amanda & Matt
How They Met
It’s been said that when you meet your soulmate, you just know. As fate would have it, one night at our mutual friend Moira’s housewarming party, I saw Matt in a different light than the high school basketball player and gracious host I had once known him as in college. Sporting a fresh haircut, I struck up a conversation with him. The butterflies were instant! We were pretty much inseparable for just over a year until life took us down different paths.
As the years passed, (around 8, but who’s counting) I never could fill the void left in my heart. Matt and I kept in touch and I held on to the hope of one day getting a second chance at love with my soulmate. Fast forward to May 2018, Matt convinced me to meet him for coffee (which I don’t actually drink). The sparks I (we) felt were instant. As we caught up, I will never forget Matt telling me, with the most sincerity and confidence in his voice and love in his eyes, “no one has ever made me feel the way you do”. That was the exact moment I knew we were getting our second chance.
A few months passed and he asked to fly me to Dc. to be his New Year’s Eve date. My parents (thinking I was crazy) hesitantly agreed to watch my fur babies as I eagerly jumped on a plane to fly across the country to be with the man I had always thought I would (and wanted to) marry.
Weeks turned into months as we continued to grow closer and our love deeper. We took advantage of every 3 day weekend we could find as we dated from 1,620 miles apart. 13 months into dating, he finally popped the question I had been hoping to hear (from the man I loved) for the last 10 years of my life!
I thought I had it all figured out; clearly a Valentine’s Day proposal or maybe a spring break proposal. Ha! Leave it to Matt not only to surprise me but to take my breath away.
What I believed was a weekend in Austin, Tx for Matt’s friend’s birthday, was better than any engagement dream I ever had! The morning of February 29, 2020, Matt picked me up (“from the airport”) to drive us to Austin for a friend’s birthday celebration. When he saw what I was wearing, converse, a distressed pink sweater, and white shorts, he asked me to change (something he has NEVER done before). I was upset, so he told me we were going to have lunch with some congressman before we went to Austin, something that made complete sense given his career. I changed into a pink and white dress and sandals.
Matt said we needed to stop at the 4 Way Bar and Grill to get something from his best friend, BJ who owns the place with his brothers. Totally normal, no big deal. Then, he pulled over at our favorite overlook on Medina Lake, (which we stopped at frequently to take pictures). He said it would be too dark when we came home to take a picture there, made sense. As we walked into the grass, I noticed a semicircle of roses on the ground. I turned around and what I saw was better than any proposal I had ever dreamed of! Matt was on his knee giving me a beautiful speech! AHH! I was so surprised and elated that I literally couldn’t speak- I forgot to say yes! Matt planned every last detail. He had a drone filming the entire thing, another drone taking pictures, and a good friend hiding in the bushes taking pictures too.
It still gets better. We pulled into the 4 Way, “to pick up something from his best friend,” and while I was in my own world, I began noticing a few people on the crowded patio that looked familiar. Mom? Dad? GRANDMA? My best friend from Houston?? WHAT?! Yep, Matt planned an entire surprise engagement party with our friends and family there to celebrate with us too! That day was a literal dream come true. I am so grateful to have a second chance at love with my best friend and soulmate!!!
Finding the Gown
Everyone arrived at my house where I had shirts waiting for them that read “Bibbidi- Bobbidi Crew” along with signs to rate each gown. I also made myself a “Bibbidi- Bobbidi I DO” shirt that I wore with a beaming smile! At the first dress stop, my very first bridal gown was gorgeous, nearly perfect, but something wasn’t quite right. I tried on about 4 other dresses before I came to dress 5, which I also LOVED, but again something was missing. I realized I loved the top of the first gown and the underlayer & bottom of the second gown. Jokingly I said, I wish I could take this bottom and that top and combine them. As if she were my real-life fairy godmother, the owner, Elizabeth, said, “actually they are the same designer, I think you can”! The next thing I know, I am in two bridal gowns one folded into the other.
I had my eyes closed. When I open them, like a flood, my eyes fill with tears and everyone around me is crying happy tears too. It was perfect. Just to be sure we left and went to my other two appointments that morning. After lunch, I still wanted to go back and get that dream of a gown. Elizabeth took my measurements, we completed paperwork, and although I had no intention of finding my gown that day, just like that the custom couture gown of my dreams was ordered!
The Perfect Venue
So, funny story… Matt and I had some serious conversations about marriage before he popped the question. One of the many reasons I love him so much is that he knows how type “A” I am, and loves me for it. We began discussing wedding dates on a long car drive to visit his grandmother. Like magic, 4-3-21 sprung into my mind as we discussed a spring wedding. As luck would have it, it was a Saturday too! We both thought it was absolutely perfect! Then, with alarm in my voice, I told Matt that it was the perfect day, but that surely other people would think of it too as we were about to hit engagement season.
Since he was home for 2 weeks over the winter break, he thought it would be a good idea to visit a few venues for an idea of what we wanted. Christmas day was here! Matt met my dad in his office and asked for his blessing. It was a lengthy conversation and my dad made sure Matt knew there were no takebacks or refunds… haha, dad! Sadly a mishap occurred with the venue we toured days before, they gave our date to someone else without informing us first (they input the wrong hall on our interest form) and we didn’t find out until we were ready to put the deposit down a few days after touring and getting the blessing from my dad.
Matt had to go back to DC for work. I made a few more appointment tours and drug my parents around with me to a few venues the next two weekends since he was gone and I was determined to find the dream venue. We stumbled upon the Milestone New Braunfels, and I instantly fell in love. It was elegant and romantic yet modern and rustic! My parents also thought it was perfect! I face-timed Matt proudly showing off this gem of a venue. Our date was available and we all adored the venue, so my parents put a deposit down that day. We had our wedding venue and the date set with a deposit even before Matt had actually proposed and yet I was still 110% completely surprised when he did.