If you are hesitant to use a dating app to find a mate, Allycia and Andre’s story might change your mind.
As soon as Allycia finished creating her profile on the online dating service Christian Mingle, Andre popped up on her match feed. She shares, “I didn’t want to message him because he was based in TX and I lived in LA, but I felt like I HAD too. He was so handsome with the kindest smile. I messaged him, and he responded the next day.”
After two months of texts, phone calls, and video chats, they finally met in person. There was an immediate, strong connection, and they knew it was time to make their relationship official. They embarked on a two year, long-distance relationship, before Andre surprised Allycia with a cleverly charming proposal during an intimate glamping trip.
To celebrate their engagement they worked with photographer Hassard Photography to plan a fun and free-spirited engagement shoot. Allycia shares, “We wanted something natural, primal, and intimate that spoke to us and the love that God has built and strengthened between us across thousands of miles and numerous states.” The results are quite stunning. Read more of their endearing love story, and see their amazing engagement photos below.
- Couple: Allycia & Andre
- Occupations: TV Casting Executive for a Streaming Service; Senior Risk Analyst for Gas Trading and Utility Company
- Engagement Session Location: Palm Springs, CA
Tell us how you met.
As true millennials…online! I, Allycia, felt the urge to sign up on Christian Mingle, and as soon as I finished my profile, I saw his face on my match feed. I didn’t want to message him because he was based in TX and I lived in LA, but I felt like I HAD too. He was so handsome with the kindest smile. I messaged him, and he responded the next day. We texted via the app, then eventually moved onto texting via phone, then WhatsApp (that saved our relationship because we all know green bubbles don’t have FaceTime!) Finally, we met in person at the airport two months later. I was so nervous waiting while he was waiting in the wrong terminal. By the time he found me, I was convinced I was being catfished because it took us forever to realize terminal B and D were not were the other person was waiting.
How did he propose.
In classic fashion I was planning to propose and waiting for a month on a custom ring because Allycia just had to have morganite instead of a diamond. I’m not complaining since the cost per carat is much cheaper. But, the wait after 2 years of dating long distance was wearing on us, and Allycia started to think, “If it hasn’t happened by now, it’s not going to..”, and she tried to break up with me. Oh yeah, this just happened to be 2 weeks before our new year’s glamping trip that we’d already paid for. Of course, I couldn’t let her know I was going to propose, so I held my ground and eventually got her to agree to take the trip and revisit how she felt about “us” afterward.
I wanted to make the proposal special, but since we were going to be in close proximity at the campsite I was nervous trying to figure out how to set up everything I planned to do. Little did I know, it would all work out divinely.
We got settled in our tent and had issues with lighting the fire in our furnace because the logs were wet. Later on we went to the savory, multi-course, live music, New Year’s Eve dinner the host prepared for all the “glampies” and let our hosts know we had trouble with the fire. The dinner was amazing, but all the while I was trying to think of an excuse to leave and prepare our tent for the proposal. That’s when it happened. Although our meal was paid for ahead of time, Allycia questioned if we needed money for a tip. I jumped at the question and casually volunteered to go back and get some cash “just in case” ; ).
I walked out of the dinner tent and ran back to our assigned tent, Red Poppy. When I got back to the tent, one of our hosts was there working on our fire. I walked in and let him know what I was planning. He gladly helped me set up the candlelit “Marry Me” bags I cut out by hand with materials from Hobby Lobby. I scattered rose petals all over the bed and wooden floor and placed her favorite picture of “us” in the center bed with letters A&A for our initials. I installed lights that looked like shining stars from behind the bed and illuminated the outside of the tent with the click of a button. I must have been taking too long because she called me to check if she needed to come help me find it. I quickly said no and that our host was simply showing me how to light the fire. Crisis averted : ).
With half of my mission complete I walked back to the dinner tent and continued our evening. I thought the setup was the challenge, but actually finding the right words to say and the chance she might say “No,” were eating away at me. We enjoyed our evening, took pictures, and walked with her pomeranian Zorro back toward the tent. I started to get ready with the ring in my pocket. I pulled out the remote for the light to turn on when she opened the tent. She thought it was the treat one of our hosts gave her dog, so I had to make an excuse and go look for it. Again crisis averted.
I planned for her to have to unzip the tent to give me time to pull out the ring, but when we got to the tent, it was open from the host helping with the fire going back to finish. Allycia went silent, walked in, and nervously backed in the corner. I began to say words, but I have no clue what came out. I just knew I would say how I felt. I got down on one knee, presented the ring, and asked for her hand. She said, “I THINK SO” lol. I was taken back, but paused and waited for her to process. She said yes, put on the ring, and ran to the bathroom lol. She said she had to go. I think she just went to look at the ring. Oh well, she said yes, and we played music and danced under my lights stars. Cheers to our journey. The bumps make the best memories.
Inspiration for Engagement shoot
We didn’t want stock photos. We wanted something natural, primal, and intimate that spoke to us and the love that God has built and strengthened between us across thousands of miles and numerous states. One of our favorite bands, husband-wife team JohnnySwim always have images where you FEEL their love, their struggles and their pick me up and dust me off story. It’s raw, personal, and imperfect. So, I went on a hunt to find a photographer who would capture the essence of everything we are: eventually stumbled upon @dallinandcienna’s work on Instagram and I knew they would be the one to see us…and off to Palm Springs is where we captured our photos.
My makeup finished late as my makeup artist – @brittanyingrambeauty – couldn’t start on time because the hotel wasn’t ready with our room. Our photographer, Dallin, had to wait in the sweltering heat for us to get ready for the shoot. We raced against golden hour and decided to drive out to the windmills to beat sunset. Parked on the side of the road, hair and dressing blowing everywhere, and tripping over the train tracks. I think at that moment I realized it doesn’t matter if something doesn’t go as planned, it always works out perfectly and for my good. I had everything I needed right there.
Tell us about your wedding process.
We decided to have a weekend in the city and a wedding in the country outside of AUSTIN. Andre is still living in Texas and thought it would be nice to switch it up and come near the groom for once. I, Allycia, am from the east coast, and most of my family and friends have made the commitment to come this way. I am so excited to spend the time making memories and showing them something new. Our big day is Monday, May 4th in Texas Wine Country. We’ve been planning for over a year now, and there have been some bumps, some balloons, and some fights in the process, but somehow we always find our way together in the end.