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Chelsea + Loren | Shades State Park Proposal + Engagement

It all started last summer after a yummy dinner with friends. As we were leaving the restaurant, Chelsea pulled me aside and whispered that I should tell Loren to call me when he decided to propose so I could be there to photograph it. So, shortly after that night, I sent Loren a Facebook message that said, “Okay, so I’ve decided whenever you decide to propose to my friend you need to call me so I can be there to photograph when it happens (of course I won’t ruin the surprise). K? K.” And his response was, “Sounds good to me! Its a deal!” Wow, could that seriously have been any easier?!

Fast forward three months. I got another message from Loren that said he had gotten the ring. Whoa. This thing was actually going to happen. And I was going to get to be there to witness it and photograph it. And I had to keep my big mouth shut so I wouldn’t ruin the surprise. We picked a date and decided it would happen at Shades State Park. Loren went to the park ahead of time and took photos of different areas on the trail that he was going to casually lead Chelsea down, so I would know exactly where he was going to pop the question.

Since this actually happened last fall (and Chelsea has been oh-so-patiently waiting for my new blog to be finished), and my texts with Loren are on my old phone, I’m going to rehash the planning details from my memory….

Loren’s plan was über impressive. You see, Loren is quite the handy guy around the house. He’s also super handy with making things out of wood (like tables and other awesome things). Well, he had to come up with a good story to get Chelsea out to Shades, since they live in the Greenwood-ish area. Loren needed to buy some special wood for a new project. He was going to buy the wood from a guy named Andy Canton (aka ME!). Well the wood guy actually did exist, and Loren had already bought the wood from him, but his name was not Andy Canton.:)Loren even saved my phone number in his phone as Andy Canton. So, when Loren was close to Shades, he called Andy (me) and had a planned, one-sided conversation with me, and he acted like I was telling him I wasn’t going to be at my shop for a while. So, since Loren and Chelsea were conveniently close to Shades, they stopped there to pass the time.

Loren’s phone call was my cue that they were close. Ryan was with me, and we hid out behind some trees, just waiting for Chelsea and Loren to get there. Every time we saw movement at the beginning of the trail, we would get into place behind the tree, thinking it was them. Well there were probably about 20 people that passed by us before Chelsea and Loren got there. Talk about multiple surges of excitement and adrenaline every time I thought it was them!

Then I saw them making their way up the path, and it was go time. When they got to the spot, Loren got down on one knee, and I popped out from behind the tree with my camera. And Chelsea was 100% absolutely shocked. Our surprise plan had worked and she didn’t have a clue any of this was going to happen.


After the actual proposal, we headed down into the park and also stopped on the side of the road in a field with pretty light.:)

Oh, and did I mention that Loren packed an outfit for Chelsea to change into after the actual proposal since we had planned to do some engagement photos right afterwards?! I mean, really, what kind of awesome guy thinks of that?!

Chelsea was one of my first friends that I met at the beginning of my junior year at Purdue after transferring from DePauw. We lived in a townhouse with two other awesome roommates my senior year. And now we live less than 15 minutes apart from each other. And I get to shoot her wedding in October. And I can’t wait!:)


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