maci + ben // pokagon state park engagement photographer

Maci and Ben. What sweethearts! Cowboy boots and bare feet. I can't wait for their Marian Hills Farm wedding this August. Maci is going barefoot in her wedding dress. *swoon* 

I spent Sunday evening at Lake James with these two. When planning their engagement session, Maci mentioned how much they loved Pokagon. Naturally, we couldn't pass that up! I am so in love with the images we got. It is safe to say I am anxiously looking forward to their big day. It will be one for the books. 

ps. I totally teared up reading their proposal story. So incredibly sweet!!

How they met according to her: We met in the fifth grade!

How they met according to him: We met in the fifth grade and I thought she was beautiful.

Proposal story: Well we have had an interesting engagement and I wouldn't change it for anything!! Originally I had planned a Valentines party and he secretly invited his whole family and some of our friends. When we got to my grandmas, he and my mom were acting so strange. Our song came on in the background and I turned to my brother thinking he was just making fun. Little did I know, when I had my back turned all of the extra family came through the doors. Ben stood up and fumbled with his pocket. He said he had a big speech planned, but was too nervous to say more than Maci will you marry me (with his child like squinty eyed smile). I was crying and just nodded my head! When he opened the ring box, he had a chocolate in there from our first Olive Garden date. It fell and everyone thought he dropped the ring!! 

We went through some tough stuff a year later and walked away from each other. But literally he called me everyday... Until I answered a month later. We couldn't live without each other. We had been such close friends for so many years and even dated!! We met up and agreed to work through everything. With teary eyes we hugged each other. It was like the feeling when you come home after being on a long trip! A couple of months later, on the 4th of July. He had the ring stashed in his camping duffle. We have a family reunion at Pokagon every year. As we were all playing water balloons, Ben slid and tripped over one of my sisters!! As he fell, his ankle twisted and he ended up with a spiral fracture!! He was determined to not go to the hospital so we all walked down to the firework show, which is a couple miles!! He hobbled all the way there and back without a complaint!  that evening we were all turning in for the night and he said quietly, Mace I had planned to walk you to our favorite pier earlier, but seeing my condition, that isn't going to happen. He rummaged through his bag and turned to me. Maci will you marry me, again? 

Our situation wasn't what we would have ever planned. We knew though that God had started our relationship 10 years ago when he wrote me a note that was signed Love Ben (with a little swan drawing). Love isn't a fairy tale or a feeling. It's a choice every day. How can we be better for each other every morning? We are so excited to be married and to start a family!! And within 3 years, we would love to have accomplished our "Registered Nurse andFull time Firefighter" couple status! 

His idea of a date night: Being with you.

Her idea of a date night: I say making dinner followed by an evening walk around town! And it wouldn't be right to end the evening without watching Friends!