It was the middle of winter when Jacob Johnson decided to propose. Valerie Moore thought it was just another night when Jacob asked her to go to Wonders of Wildlife. They were perusing the aquarium when they spotted two divers in the tank and were asked if they’d like their picture taken with them. One was holding a sign that read Wonders of Wildlife but what Valerie didn’t know was there was a backside that read “Valerie, will you marry me?”
It all began in high school when the two were set up on a blind date. “We were together for four years, so we really knew each other going into the engagement,” Valerie says. “We’re pretty similar people, but I’m a little bit more high-strung, he’s a bit more easy-going.” Valerie says this contrast between the two was apparent throughout the wedding planning process.
A special part of the planning process for Valerie was practicing the choreography for their first dance at Step by Step in Springfield. “We would practice every day, and it was kind of nice to put your phone down and practice your dance,” she says. For the big day, they chose the song “Perfect” by Ed Sheeran.
Valerie advises other couples going through the planning process not to fret if something goes wrong. “No one else showing up is going to know your vision if something doesn’t go according to plan,” she says. “It could go wrong, and maybe something did go wrong, but at the end of the day you’re not really going to remember because the day is so good.”
Initially, Valerie was planning the wedding on her own. Eventually, the details started adding up, and she realized that as the bride, she wanted to be able to relax on her big day. Valerie attributes the absence of stress and complications on her wedding day to her wedding planner Abby Mitchell, because if things were going wrong—Valerie had no clue.