All the way from the middle school they both attended, through high school and beyond, Sarah and Matt’s paths had converged and diverged for years at a time. With big gaps, their relationship developed slowly. When Matt introduced Sarah to his band as “my girlfriend,” they both knew it had become official. “We took it very slow,” Matt says, “and then very quick.” 

They enjoyed hiking, and Matt decided to propose to Sarah at Muir Woods in the Bay Area, where they would, he thought, look out from the top of a hill to the beautiful, sunny vista of the beach.

When they arrived at the park it was raining and cold. The steps seemed endless, and Sarah wondered, with all the fog, would they be able to see anything? Matt pressed on saying, “We’re going to have a nice view here, pretty soon.”

It wasn’t what he expected, but it was perfect. The rain and wind had eased.

Unsuspecting, Sarah drank in the atmosphere. “You could see the fog swirling between the trees, and a bird flying,” Sarah says. “Everything had drops of water hanging like crystals, and green moss was hanging everywhere.  It was like a fairy tale, magical and enchanting.”

When Matt pulled out the ring, Sarah was overcome.  She cried and they hugged. Matt said, “I’m going to need you to actually say yes.”

They were married a little over a year later.  Though they originally considered an intimate wedding with just immediate family, they realized that they were so blessed they wanted to share it with cousins and aunts and friends.

So they did.

“We had a lot of people who came from far away to spend our day with us, which was really, really meaningful,” Sarah says. 

On the day, time slowed as each prepared for the ceremony. At White Arbor Weddings, Matt retired to the room of the owner’s son to finish writing his vows. There were Lord of the Rings and Star Wars posters on the wall.  “I was writing these vows on the Star Wars book, and it was so perfect,” Matt says.

Sarah also had a tranquil moment before the ceremony. “I sat down with my mom,” Sarah says. “She had written me this really beautiful letter, and oh goodness gracious the tears were flowing!”

When the moment finally came, and everything was in place, Matt waited for Sarah to come into view. As he saw her, Matt thought, “Not only is she gorgeous, but I’m going to remember this moment for the rest of my life.”

As the ceremony concluded, right after they kissed, Sarah thought, “We did it! We’re walking back up the aisle—we’re married!”  That was her absolute favorite moment.

Afterward, the two enjoyed walking around talking to guests. “All of our favorite people in one place…[it was] just amazing to me,” Matt says. “It’s weird to have that many people there, who all know you and care about you and have given you parts of your life.”  

—Margaret Snider