Mackenzie Miller and Jake Ryon have had the quintessential pandemic engagement experience. Mackenzie, a special education teacher, and Jake, a mortgage lender, both began working from home last March. They adopted a dog together, their adorable rescue Soto, to brighten their quarantine life. And when Jake began planning a proposal, Mackenzie couldn’t help but notice — she could overhear his phone conversations in their small condo!
Jake popped the question in front of Maxwell Park, their favorite DC wine bar, in May. Their pandemic proposal, complete with masks and covid announcements in the background, was captured by a friend taking pictures from across the street. Jake did manage to surprise Mackenzie with one step of his plan: their friends were socially distanced in Logan Circle, safely gathered to congratulate the couple.
Though businesses are beginning to reopen and more people are getting their vaccines, wedding planning is still largely on hold for this 2021 couple because of how much things keep changing. Mackenzie and Jake have set their date for October and booked their venue, District Winery, and their band to lock down those details. Other decisions, like their guest count, will depend on safety guidelines. They hope to finalize their guest list and send out their invitations in August. (Mackenzie jokes that they should send covid testing kits with the invites and give out vaccine doses as their wedding favors.)
One detail that Mackenzie can start planning is her flowers. She found Poppy through a friend’s recommendation and contacted us to design her wedding flowers. Mackenzie’s floral vision is a ‘less is more’ feel with a neutral palette — white and cream flowers with lots of greenery.
Aside from wedding planning, she has plenty of other priorities to focus on. She works for the largest elementary school in her county, and a lot of children will be coming back to school this week. After months of remote teaching, keeping her energy up to engage her first and second graders stuck at home in front of a screen, Mackenzie and her fellow teachers will need to adjust to new standards: like spacing learning areas so the children can stay safely distanced from each other. She hopes that the situation will bring some normalcy back to students’ lives, as she’s been saddened that the pandemic has taken away so many fun hallmarks of elementary school life: Valentine’s Day and Halloween activities haven’t been the same over Zoom, and fully remote learning has meant no more snow days off from school.
With the pandemic affecting so much of their story already, Mackenzie has one dream for her wedding: for Dr. Anthony Fauci to officiate!
We would love to help Mackenzie reach Dr. Fauci so that he can officiate her wedding. Let us know if you have any ideas for how we can make this happen! We’ll check back in with Mackenzie later in the spring to see where she is in her wedding planning process.