It was the first Thursday of the fall semester at the University of Connecticut. Steph, a graduate student pursuing her Masters Degree in Education, decided to take advantage of a cancelled class and celebrate a rare night out. Brenton, a freshman, straight out of the Marine Corps, was eager to begin the college experience he had always dreamed of. After a chance meeting through a mutual friend at a favorite watering hole, Huskies, the two hit it off and chatted well into the wee hours of the evening.
After that night, Brenton went on to make the necessary calculated moves, strategically texting Steph a couple of days after the unexpected encounter. A week later, they met up for a casual ice cream date. Both were pleasantly surprised when they saw each other that second time, in the clear light of day, without the impairments of whatever liquid courage they had imbibed in that fateful first night.
Persistence continued to pay off for Brenton, wearing Steph down, little by little. Their relationship slowly progressed, despite Steph being diligently focused on her studies, while Brenton thoroughly enjoyed the more social aspects of college life. Their partnership just worked. They overcame any and all obstacles during the next few years, even living an hour apart while Steph began her teaching career in East Haddam, and Brenton remained at UConn to complete his Bachelor's Degree.
Finally, after six and a half years together, the time was right and Brenton proposed on May 31, 2014. The timing was perfect because all of Steph's family was in town for Steph's neice's dance recital and they all knew how big of a day this was going to be. Nervous to lose the precious ring, Brenton duct-taped it to his ankle to make sure it would stay put throughout the day.
After the recital, Brenton escorted Stephanie to what he claims is the central point of campus (the rest of us are still awaiting confirmation from Wikipedia about the validity of this claim), flanked between the Student Union and Homer Babbidge Library.
Hand-in-hand with Stephanie, Brenton began his spiel about their history, beginning when they first met among the throngs of co-eds and their fellow sorority sisters and fraternity brothers during Nickel Nights at Huskies. Now, seven years later, they had grown from what started as a carefree college courtship, to partners in everything they did. As he approached his punch line to ask the big question, Brenton got lost in his own words, his nervousness about what he was about to do causing him to stumble and sweat. Sensing what was about to happen, Stephanie became concerned about how Brenton was feeling, and took charge of the situation, coaching him to breath deeply and calm down, and also likely instructing him on what to say next (in Miss Cone's own true fashion!).
As Brenton got down on one knee, it was then that he realized the downside of his brilliant duct tape scheme. He struggled with getting the ring box out of its adhesive hold (it did do the job quite well, too well), sacrificing some leg hair in the process. Of course, the rest is history, and Stephanie said "yes" to a lifetime with Brenton as husband and wife.
After that, Stephanie's family came around the bend just in time to squeal with excitement and pop the bubbly! And later on dinner with their closet family and friends was the cherry on top to an absolutely perfect day.
Stephanie + Brenton cannot wait to celebrate with friends and family as they tie the knot on July 18th, 2015.