Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The past few weeks

I haven't done much the past few weeks. Why? Well, I came down with mono and didn't feel like doing much of anything. Before I knew that I had mono, I was wondering why I didn't want to make any plans or buy a dress or anything. But now I know.

Anyway, I'm mostly better now, so hopefully you'll get to read all about my exciting wedding planning. :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

We are getting Married

Yep. That's right. Married. On July 9th in the Seattle Temple. From here you can read all about Hollis and Michelle's lives. Yep. This is the place. Who we are, how we met, how we fell in love, etc.

Also, you can get more information about our open house and reception. Look at the links on the right to navigate and get to where you want.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

For your viewing enjoyment

Our Story

Yep. We have one.

First Meeting
Michelle met Hollis just after she moved to Seattle. She went to an institute committee meeting, and Hollis was on the Institute Council, so he was in charge of one of the committees. Our first conversation (after the meeting) went something along these lines:
M: "Hi, I'm from Wenatchee."
H: "Do you know anyone from East Wenatchee?"
M: "Yeah, I'm actually from East Wenatchee."
H: "Do you know any Younkins?"
M: "Like Kathy? YES! I love her! We were friends during junior high and high school. And we were roommates."
H: "Awesome! I love Kathy! She's so awesome! I'm one of her friends from Ellensburg. She's one of my favorite people."
M: "Mine too. In fact, my cousin Richard is the one who helped Kathy realize she should go on a mission."
H: "Yeah, I think she told me that story."
M: "Well, see ya."
Yep. Riveting stuff. And that was pretty much it for the next month.

Callings and Friendship
After about a month, Michelle was called to be on the Institute Council. Which meant that she got to be friends with several awesome people - including that kid Hollis. On November 11, Veteran's Day, the Institute Council went on a day trip to Bellingham. We went on a hike - bonding time - and had a planning meeting. So that was fun.

L to R: Michelle, Hollis, Jon, Brother Knowles, Maggie, Stephanie, Julia

But it wasn't until the next week that we did anything outside of our calling together.

One of Michelle's friends had recently broke up with her boyfriend, so she wanted to do something fun on Friday night. Michelle felt like a bunch of people were needed, so she started asking for ideas. One friend suggested that we go roller skating - it's free for University of Washington students. So at Friday Friendship Feast (the weekly institute lunch), Michelle started spreading the word and inviting people. Hollis happened to overhear the words "roller skating" and was extremely excited. So a bunch of us met at the institute and we all walked over. And we had a blast.

L to R: Hollis, Michelle, Maggie

The other event of significance that occurred at that Friday Friendship Feast was that Hollis and Michelle hatched a plan. This plan had been discussed previously, but we made concrete plans. We thought that it would be the best idea ever if we made a fake wedding announcement for our friend Kathy. So we decided to go take engagement pictures.

This is just a sample of the many pictures. More can be found on facebook or this blog post.

And we just kept doing things. This blog does a decent job of chronicling our adventures.

The New Year

So Michelle went home for Christmas. When she got back, Hollis was acting differently. It was as if he was thinking about dating her (which he was). Michelle decided that it didn't matter, she was just going to keep being friends with the awesome Hollis. And we reached a point where we were spending so much time together that we either had to start dating or stop seeing each other. So we gave dating a whirl. We whirled so well that we ended up deciding to get married. So we are - July 9, 2010.

The proposal story as found on my blog.

All about Hollis

I am awesome. And if you are reading this, you probably are too, if for nothing more than association. I'm going to the University of Washington and double majoring in History and American Indian Studies, with a minor in Environmental Science and Resource Management. I plan on going into Washington State Parks after I graduate and becoming a ranger.
I am the youngest of eleven children and grew up in the great city of Kenmore, WA. I love Seattle and the rain. I also love Ultimate Frisbee and Peach flavored Ice Cream. And I also love Michelle Merrill. She will be my wife. You wanna know why? Cause she is amazing. And awesome people should only marry amazing people. I am also part of a couple other blogs. Chec-chec-chec-check 'em out!

All about Michelle

I was born in Edmonds, WA while my dad was attending dental school at the University of Washington. We moved to Oklahoma City, OK when I was two so my dad could go to ortho school, and then we moved to East Wenatchee where I grew up. When I was little, I took ballet lessons and played basketball. Then I discovered softball and soccer and volleyball and tennis.... I love sports. After graduating high school, I moved to Provo where I attended Brigham Young University for four years, graduating with a BS in Chemistry Education. While at BYU, I rediscovered my love for dancing, especially folk dancing. And I also discovered that I love flag football and ultimate frisbee and kickball.

After graduating from BYU, I moved to Seattle to work on a masters in "Educational Communications and Technology" from University of Washington. Shortly after moving here I met Hollis, but that is another story altogether. :)

Here is a smattering of pictures of my life. Please enjoy them! (I do.)

For more information, you can read my blog.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Yes, I really am engaged.

And this is how he asked me.

On Sunday, Hollis asked me if I would like to go out to a fancy dinner with him on Tuesday night. Half of my brain was immediately thinking, "Proposal! Engagement! Yay!" while the other half was working very hard at ignoring the first half. I managed to say "Yeah, and we should dress to match because it's more fun that way!" Because it is.

So Tuesday came along. We'd decided to go with black and green - mostly because I wanted to wear my "little black dress" that I'm currently borrowing from my sister Nat. Hollis had made reservations at a restaurant called Anthony's in Kirkland. It's right on the waterfront with a view of Lake Washington. Dinner was really nice, especially since *someone* had given us a gift card to the place. (Hollis was trying to throw me off and said his friend Kyle "happened" to give him a card to Anthony's, but really my awesome, incredible, amazing roommate Carrie Marie had given him a gift card.)

After dinner we went down to a park on the water front. As we are walking along, I see that the park mostly consists of a large gazebo that is conveniently empty. The park was mostly deserted, which I think was because it was raining (not that hard though). As we get closer, Hollis comments, "I think someone is playing music," and I notice that there is music playing. He starts dancing as we walk along. I also notice that there are candles set up inside the gazebo, but I pretend that I don't see them.

Then Hollis comments, "Oh, look, candles." As if they just happen to be there. We walk into the gazebo and have a dance party. There were three songs that played that were of the peppy variety, and we had fun dancing to them. Though I couldn't dance as intensely as I wanted because I had just finished eating dinner, and I can't dance on a full stomach. But I had fun.

Then, when we were both quite winded, Hollis (pretending that he didn't know what songs were on the playlist) said, "I hope the next one is a slow song." And then our song started playing. (Yes, we have a song - "Leaving on a Jet Plane.") I didn't know that we had a song until it began to play. And as soon as I heard it, I realized, "Hey, we have a song." And I also realized that I was actually going to be engaged.

So we danced and Hollis sang in my ear. And then, right after the third verse, he gets down on one knee and proposed. I just about cried. I didn't, but I almost did.

I said yes, and Hollis pulled a ring box out of his pocket, and inside was this beautiful ring he had made:

You see, I had a dream the week before that Hollis had proposed to me with a ring that was of lower quality than a paperclip, and he had purchased the ring. In my dream, I was frustrated because he'd spent money on it. So Hollis made this ring and informed me that it was better than my dream ring - it was made from a paperclip!

One final note: Carrie Marie and Maren, two of my very good friends, helped set up the candles and the boom box with music. And then they hid in the bushes and filmed the entire thing. And both of them got very wet, but they are awesome!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Allen was right

So a few months ago, right after Hollis and I took some fake engagement pictures, Allen said something along the lines of, "Well, this will be really awkward in four months when you really do get engaged." And we laughed at him. That was silly, we weren't even dating! Nor did we think that we were interested in dating.


Three and a half months later, we're engaged.

(Hollis made this ring from a bead and jewelry wire and a paper clip.)

Allen really was right.