I pushed open the door to Townshends Teahouse and was immediately enveloped with the warm earthy tones that only an organic tea house can provide. The smell of dried herbs perfumed the air, and there was not one patron who did not have their nose stuck in a book. For bibliophiles like Caitlin, she was sure to be on Cloud 9. Brandon and Caitlin were sitting across from each other next to one of the three floor to ceiling windows that looked out onto a hip and adorably manicured downtown Eugene. I sat down next to them and shook both their hands and got right to it.
"So what I'm going to do is have you guys tell your stories. From the beginning. I want to know who Brandon and Caitlin are. How you met, and what your dream wedding is going to look like."
I hit the red "record" button on my iPhone, set it down face up on the coffee table and began to listen to the All American tale...
"So I grew up in the sunny central valley of California - Lodi. My parents (Ma and Pa Law as they are referred to by most of my friends!) are incredibly awesome and I am so blessed to have them as parents. I love everything about my childhood. I played competitive softball growing up. Every weekend I would play softball and made some really amazing friends and it taught me how to prioritize things. Softball is actually what ultimately brought me to Oregon. I went to Willamette University to play softball but unfortunately sustained an injury which kept me from playing any longer. My first year in Oregon I really struggled because it was raining all the time, I needed my sunshine. One of my friends from softball convinced me to stay and see how beautiful the summers are. So I did. There is nothing quite like the access to all the hiking trails and being outdoors. It is really special to me.
I also love to drink beer! I love beer, its delicious, I have two hops tattoos. I have made friends in the beer industry. It has been a big part of my life in a non- alcoholic way. I am like the cheapest date ever! It takes me like two hours to drink a beer because I am so chatty!
I am a nerd, lets just put that out there. I love Harry Potter. I was 12 when Harry Potter was 12 and I resonated with that because it was like growing up with that person and that magical world. My birthday is the same as Hermione! In fact my grandpa is the one who bought the first book for me. It has been something I kept up with and have maintained friendships with people who are also crazy Harry Potter nerds. Standing in line for midnight releases for books and all of that. I am also a huge Lord of the Rings fan, my dad gave me my first book, The Hobbit, so then of course I had to read the whole Lord of the Rings trilogy. My cat is named Treebeard! Treebeard and the Ents are my favorite characters."
"I grew up in Salem, born and raised. I finally left for this one right here." Brandon looks and Caitlin and smiles. " I went to the school right down the road from my house and two awesome parents and one sister who lives in Colorado with my nephew. I was little crazy back in the day. Nothing like, awful, but I was a handful for my mother I would say. It was bad. I feel bad for my mother, it took me a while to grow up. I love to play Disc golf. I am all about it. It is like my yoga, when I am out there I really don't think about anything else. It is a very peaceful thing for me.
How they met & The Proposal
"Well MY best friend met Caitlin's best friend. So she moved in with them for a little while. I looked at Lindsay and was like, "hook me up?" and she gave me the death stare and said "nope don't even think about it." I did not listen for long apparently." Caitlin laughed and added
"Our first date was actually here in Townshends! I love tea, and Brandon was like, "this is kind of weird" but the Tacovre was not open yet so I suggested we get some tea before tacos and then it kind of become a thing for us.
"I knew the proposal was coming! " Caitlin laughed. "So every Sunday I get off of work early and we go play disc golf together. He normally throws first but this time he finished a hole an suggested i throw first the next time. not thinking of it i threw it and crushed it and was freaking out because it was the best hole yet. I turned around and he had a beer for me with the ring tied to it. It was so cute, we were the only one of this tee pad so it was just the two of us."
"He did good. He did good. I had been looking at stuff on Pinterest and sending him pictures. He was shopping for rings and kept saying, "this is not the right one". I just told him that I wanted something evil looking. So we went to our first jewelry store in the beginning and I said, "yeah I am looking for a ring that could look like it would collect souls" and the jewelers face just dropped and was totally put off. The next jeweler we went to were totally amazing and had the exact ring in mind for me. They completely custom designed my ring and it turned out better than I could have hoped for."
The clock struck noon and Brandon's taco senses were tingling. Piling into the car we made the one mile trek to the infamous Tacovore, a taco joint nestled in the heart of downtown Eugene, always brimming with clients hungry for spicy taco-ie goodness and ice cold beers. Brandon grabbed Caitlin's hand, his face looked a little thoughtful for a brief moment in between giggles, "If you had asked me before about getting married, I would have said 'Nope'. But when you just know. Well... things change"